In Montana at this time of year, dry skin can rank right up there on the list of winter annoyances. Cold temperatures, windy conditions, indoor forced hot air, and a diet low in good fats can all cause us to chafe our way through the winter. We can’t do much about the cold and wind, but we can meet the challenge in other ways.
Probably the best way to help your skin in winter is to have good fats in your diet. Good fats will help retain skin moisture, keep skin flexible, and speed healing of any skin damage. Limit artery-clogging saturated fats from animal sources, and trans fats in products that contain hydrogenated oils. Cook with olive oil, and include avocados, nuts and cold-water ocean fish in your diet. Supplement with extra fish oil.
Pay attention to the products you put on your skin. Avoid products that contain parabens, petroleum products, FD&C dyes, synthetic fragrances and ingredients that you can’t pronounce. Use natural products that contain anti-oxidant vitamins A, C and E. Look for minerals such as silica and zinc. Plant-based ingredients can add nourishment, especially if they are organic. Try fun products that contain green tea, acai berry, jojoba or sea buckthorn oil, cupuacu or shea butter, seaweed, buttermilk, wild lettuce powder, royal jelly, sugar maple extract or marine silts.
Eat good fats, put good stuff on your skin, stay hydrated, and you won’t have to hide your hide!
--Dr. Kate Kennedy