As you probably know, the environment is filled with toxins. Whether it’s the air we breathe, the water we drink, or the food we eat, these toxins can take a toll on our health. And if that weren’t bad enough, our bodies also create toxins as a by-product of normal metabolism.
These harmful compounds are known as free radicals and oxidative stress. In this article, we’ll discuss what free radicals and oxidative stress are, how they affect your body and skin, and what you can do to reduce their damage.
What are free radicals?
Free radicals are molecules formed by our body or by external elements. They have an unpaired electron in their outermost orbital, making them unstable. This instability causes free radicals to “steal” electrons from other molecules in order to become stable. In the process, they damage or destroy those molecules.
Free radicals are often associated with environmental pollution and poor lifestyle choices, but our bodies actually produce them as a by-product of normal metabolism. They’re also produced when our bodies are exposed to ultraviolet (UV) light, cigarette smoke, and other sources of environmental stress.
What is oxidative stress?
Oxidative stress occurs when there’s an imbalance between the production of free radicals and the body’s ability to detoxify them. This can damage cells and lead to inflammation.
Oxidative stress is a normal part of life, but it can become a problem if the body can’t keep up with the demand. This can happen when we’re exposed to environmental toxins, when we have an infection, or when we’re under physical or emotional stress.
Oxidative stress alters the DNA of our cells, attacks proteins and fatty tissues, and thus accelerates cell aging. It is also suspected of contributing to the onset of certain diseases such as cancer or Alzheimer’s disease.
How do free radicals and oxidative stress affect your skin?
Free radicals and oxidative stress can cause a number of skin problems, including wrinkles, fine lines, age spots, and dryness. They can also make the skin more susceptible to sun damage and skin cancer.
How to fight free radicals and oxidative stress?
If there are too many free radicals in our body, it means that we have too few antioxidants to counter them. A good balance between free radicals and antioxidants in our body makes it possible to avoid oxidative stress.
There are a few things we can do to reduce the number of free radicals in our bodies:
- Eating a diet rich in antioxidants
- Exercising regularly
- Avoiding tobacco smoke and other environmental pollutants
- Limiting exposure to UV light
- Stressing less
As we mentioned before, oxidative stress results from an imbalance between free radicals and antioxidants. And, one of the best ways to counter it is to give our body antioxidants! But where to find it?
Vitamins A, C, and E are antioxidants. They can be found in fruits, vegetables, nuts, and seeds. You can also take supplements, but it’s always best to get your nutrients from food first.
Some foods that are particularly high in antioxidants include:
- Berries (acai berries, blueberries, strawberries, raspberries)
If you want to make sure you’re getting enough antioxidants in your diet, try to eat a variety of colorful fruits and vegetables every day. The brighter the colors, the more antioxidants they contain. Selenium is a mineral that’s also high in antioxidants and can be found in Brazil nuts, tuna, and whole wheat bread.
Zinc is a mineral that’s essential for the proper functioning of the immune system. It’s also an antioxidant and can be found in oysters, beef, pumpkin seeds, and beans.
Free radicals and oxidative stress also affect your skin and just as you should fight them from the inside, you should fight them f<rom the outside, as well. A great way to do that is to use face masks.
Some masks particularly rich in antioxidants will also help to reduce oxidative stress… And stress in general, because there is nothing more relaxing than a soothing mask on a relaxed face!
If you want to fight against skin aging, free radicals, and oxidative stress, you have to have proper weapons. One of the best ways to do it is to include serums in your skincare routine. And especially those that are rich in vitamins A, C, E, and other ingredients with antioxidant properties.
Squalane is one of those ingredients and FOREO’s SERUM SÉRUM SERUM contains, not only squalane but also hyaluronic acid. This rejuvenating, antioxidant-rich, and ultra-hydrating SERUM SÉRUM SERUM effectively transfers microcurrent from BEAR to your skin, giving you a gorgeous youthful glow in no time.