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There is a classic Simpsons episode where Nelson yells at Bart that his epidermis is showing. Bart gets all flustered, falls out of his treehouse, breaks his leg, and condemns himself to a summer in a wheelchair and a cast. It is a brilliant homage to Hitchcock’s Rear Window, and is one of my favorites. After Bart falls, Nelson says “epidermis means your hair, so technically it’s true”.
Well, I have an inkling poor Nelson won’t be getting full marks in biology. Epidermis is not hair, but rather the outermost layer of skin. It is the most visible part of the largest organ in the human body – our skin. On average, the surface area of our skin measures between 16 and 21 square feet. It has three layers: epidermis, dermis, and subcutaneous.
Our skin protects our inner organs from external attacks, helps to regulate the temperature of the body, and provides us with a way to sense and interpret the physical world. There are tons of products devoted to making skin look younger, smoother, cleaner, and more vital. And why is that? Well, because time, stress, diet, sun exposure, our close environment – and possibly Doritos… – all have a real effect on how our skin looks and feels.
Regardless of any external influences, our skin has its own genetic predisposition. Skin can be naturally oily, dry, neither, or a mixture of the two. The body’s natural oil, by the way, is called sebum. It is produced by special glands which are located all over our body, except for the palms and feet. Some products do contribute to the skin, but are also laden with chemicals and harsh ingredients. Substances which, in the long run, could cause more harm than good.
Forget those pharmaceutical products. There are some all-natural solutions to perfect-looking skin. There are actions and substances which will provide you with the healthiest and clearest skin of your life, and which carry a lesser probability for negative side-effects, in the short and long term. It’s a win-win.
This is by no means the only way to achieve this, but here are just a few of those healthier solutions. Things you can choose to implement on your day-to-day.
‘Beauty sleep’ is not just an expression. It is a real thing, and it has real consequences. No need to get into anything too scientific here. This is something so obviously plain, it is almost mundane. Getting a good night’s sleep is essential for proper development at any age and any stage, and the quality of our sleep helps determine our mental, physical, and spiritual well-being. Skin cells die and fall away from us all day, every day. Skin cell regeneration kicks into high gear when you are asleep, because it is at night that our body is at its most relaxed state.
“Let thy food be thy medicine”. One of the oldest tricks in the book, as it were. This statement is incontrovertible. Natural preventive medicine is the best kind, and a healthy diet is a big part of that. You want your skin to shine? Start by eating right. What you eat and drink gets into your system, and has a visible and noticeable effect on you, inside and out. Try more avocados, pomegranates, walnuts, sunflower seeds, and other foods which are high in vitamin E, Omega-3, keratin, and antioxidants. There are many other skin-friendly foods out there, all aching to be eaten.