Thought too many sweets only affected your waistline? Think again. Of all the scary things sugar does to our bodies, this one takes the (literal) cake.
Too much sugar causes two dreaded things: acne, and wrinkles. Yep, sugar makes you look older and give you more pimples. So pretty much the worst.
How does this work? Your skin is springy and smooth thanks to proteins collagen and elastin. Sugar causes a reaction in the body that damages these proteins, making them brittle instead of elastic. This leads to your skin sagging and wrinkling.
Excess sugar also makes your skin more sensitive to sun damage. Sun exposure is the main cause of skin ageing, and is a particular problem for all of us living in sunny Australia.
Sugar also causes inflammation, which leads to redness, breakouts and those tell-tale dark circles under your eyes.
This is all pretty scary stuff, but the good news is that it is never too late to start to reverse the damage! Our top four tips for gorgeously glowing and wrinkle-free skin:
1. Ditch the processed foods.
Highly processed and pre-packaged foods are high in refined carbohydrates, sugars and artificial nasties. It can often be hard to know exactly what’s in your food, as it can be hidden behind confusing names and dietary terms. Fresh, whole food is the healthiest choice, giving you the nutrients you need without all the other rubbish. Plus, it tastes heaps better too!
2. Say goodbye to sugar
Easy ways to give up sugar include: swapping soft drink and juices for water (add some lemon if plain water is too boring); swapping sugar in baking and tea and coffee for Norbu; and choosing snacks lower in overall sugar content.
3. Stay hydrated
Your skin loves water! Make sure you’re getting enough throughout the day to keep your cells hydrated and feeling fresh. It’s recommended for adults to drink about 2 litres a day, but if you’re exercising frequently or in a dehydrating environment you may need more.
4. Use sunscreen
The best way to save your skin? Use sunscreen. A moisturiser with a built in sunscreen is a good way to make sure you’ve got some skin protection, but if you’re out and about make sure you apply broad spectrum SPF30 at least 20 minutes before you head outdoors.