A New Reason to Worry About Wrinkles

by on July 13th, 2011 at 7:00 am

Wrinkles used to be just a superficial concern, a bane of aging, often exacerbated by lifestyle choices like too much sun exposure and poor diet.  Now, having more wrinkles may be correlated with lower bone density, according to a recent study conducted by the Reproductive Aging and Bone Health Program at Yale University.

Researchers noted the skin firmness and depth of facial wrinkles of women in their 40’s and 50’s (who had not had cosmetic surgery) as well as their bone density measured at the hip, spine and heel, and concluded that women with firmer facial skin had overall higher bone density overall.

The connection is believed to be related to collagen, which is present in both the skin and bone tissue. As collagen decreases with age, skin begins to wrinkle and sag. Researchers from the study suggest that this loss also contributes to deterioration in bone quality.

As osteoporosis and bone fractures are common concerns with the deterioration of bone density, the findings suggest that getting a screening could be a very beneficial precautionary measure.

Help for healthy bones & skin

To protect and strengthen bones, an adequate intake of calcium as well as regular exercise are very important. A daily calcium dosage of 1,200 mg is recommended for adults over 50 years. Dairy products, dark green leafy vegetables, dried fruit (apricots and figs), fish (especially mackerel and salmon) are all good sources of calcium. Sufficient vitamin D is equally important to strengthen muscles and absorb calcium. Weight-bearing activities such as weight lifting, step aerobics, or jogging also help to support healthy bones.

The best way to deal with wrinkles is to help prevent them in the first place. Herbal remedies can help keep skin supple and moisturized. Eating foods full of antioxidants such as dark, leafy greens and berries as well as essential fatty acids such as avocadoes, nuts and olive oil can also benefit skin. Getting enough sleep and managing stress are also important factors for healthy skin.


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