What do you know about your skin?
Your skin is an organ that provides many vital roles. It’s one of the largest organs of the body in weight and is made up of 64% water. Your skin has three layers, the outer most layer is the epidermis and the inner layer is the dermis. Beneath that second layer is the fatty layer called the hypodermis.
Your skin has three main functions, protection against infections of viruses and micro-organisms, regulation of body temperature and fluid balance, and sensation though a network of nerve cells. Your skin also synthesizes vitamin D from Sun exposure and stores it.
What is the role of water in the body?
The main role of water is to transport essential nutrients, minerals, vitamins, glucose and keytones to all the cells in the body and to transport the wastes that your cells produce and reject and toxins that make it into the body. Water is absolutely essential in helping your body to eliminate them.
Water makes up 70% to 75% of your total body weight. In addition to being a carrier, water is vital for every metabolic function in your body, such as metabolizing fats, digestion and elimination, lubrication, enzymatic and chemical reactions. Water moves hormones, antibodies and oxygen throughout the lymphatic system and through the bloodstream. See How much water do I need? for more information.
Your skin benefits from drinking water
The condition of being dehydrated will not only cause problems with the elimination of wastes through your digestive and urinary tracks, but will also disrupt your bodies cooling mechanism of sweating though your skin.
If you don’t replenish this water loss, your body will have a difficult time continuing all the vital functions it performs.
There remains little scientific and clinical studies on how water consumption specifically affects the health of the skin. Of the few studies that were done, most were inconclusive whether it had much affect on skin health. However, one must only look to the overwhelming health benefits that hydration provides to every other organ and cell in the body and know that the alternative to hydration is not good for your skin.
Just because there’s few studies on the effects of hydration levels on skin health, doesn’t mean that it doesn’t have an effect.
Many celebrities and beauty enthusiasts claim that the secret behind their glowing skin is due to remaining fully hydrated. Indeed, many skin specialists and doctors agree that without adequate water intake, wrinkles appear more pronounced as the skin is not as plump and elastic as it is when someone is fully hydrated. Under a microscope researchers have found that the wrinkles still exist, but hydrated skin minimizes the appearance of age.
Collagen, the main structural protein found in skin and other connective tissues, requires water to work effectively. Hydrolyzed collagen power is fairly inexpensive and can be supplemented in warm drinks and soups to add lost collagen through aging.
When the skin is hydrated, it’s much less likely to crack or blemish and is quicker to heal. Additionally, dehydration may trigger oil glands in the skin that lead to acne legions, while proper hydration may help to dilute skin oil concentrations and fend off acne.
The lack of hydration will cause your skin to become dry and tight, lose elasticity and cause surface skin cells to become flaky and feel rough. You would then need to exfoliate (clean) the dead skin cells away to expose the soft, live ones underneath, giving a nicer, healthier appearance. Dry skin is less resilient and is more prone to wrinkling. Perhaps dehydration leads to premature aging of the skin.
Make sure that your drinking water is free from toxins and other contaminants. See What should be in your water for more information.
Maintain the hydration of your skin topically
- Avoid prolonged contact with hot or chlorinated water.
- Use a gentle exfoliating cleanser instead of soap.
- Avoid prolonged exposure to dry air and cover exposed skin.
- Use a humidifier indoors in the winter.
- Apply moisturising cream right after a shower or bath.
- Avoid using skin care products that contain alcohol.