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A Whole New Meaning to Inner Beauty

Aug 30, 2011 07:07PM ● By Anonymous

From makeup to facial cleansers, sunscreen to Botox, the ever-expanding skin care industry dominates a global market. The demand for any product or procedure promising to enhance, erase, or enliven is growing. Moreover, eager consumers are not just aging Americans, but younger citizens of North America, Europe, and Asia as well. And they are sharing some of their treatments with us.

Edging their way into the American economy are nutricosmetics, a line of aesthetic enhancements that promote healthy skin, hair, and nail growth by internal, rather than external, means. Nutricosmetics are purported to be aids to both nutrition and personal care and are closely related to nutriceuticals, hybrids of nutritional and pharmaceutical products. “Nutricosmetics are oral beauty supplements that work along with topical beauty products by providing the critical nutrients ‘from within’ to feed the body with the right nutrients to support healthy skin cells,” says Paula Simpson, executive director of Isocell North America, a manufacturer of nutricosmetics.

Results of the product line are amplified, the company claims, when ingested in conjunction with a nutritionally rich diet. Produce rich in color is rich in antioxidants and phytochemicals, substances that significantly reduce the effects of oxidation and inflammation, which wreak havoc on not only the complexion but on internal structures as well. And Simpson likes to remind us that meat may not always be the healthiest source of protein. “High quality proteins provide amino acids critical to support the structural integrity of the skin, [but] choose your protein from non-animal sources like fish, soy, beans and nuts,” says Simpson. Upping your intake of fiber and omega-3s is well known nutritional advice, but lesser known supplements are critical to optimal health as well.

“Ginger, turmeric, green tea, cocoa, cayenne, cinnamon [all] have potent anti-inflammatory and blood sugar balancing effects on the body and can readily be incorporated into foods or taken as a tea,” says Simpson. “Probiotics/prebiotics found in yogurt and functional beverages, cranberry juice, and milk thistle tea help to support the healthy functioning of the eliminative pathways in our bodies to effectively neutralize and remove toxins before they can be absorbed by the body.”