Peptides and the Skin

skin cells

People have been talking about peptides for years and almost every major skin care line touts that their products contain peptides.  But what are they and how do they work?

Peptides are an important ingredient in skin care products and coupled with other anti-aging ingredients plus sunscreen help improve the appearance of your skin. Peptides can be described in two ways. They are short or long chains of amino acids, which are the building blocks of protein. They are also protein fragments: collagen (structural protein in connective tissues), elastin (protein that coils and recoils like a spring), integrin (cell surface receptors that assist with adhesive reactions between certain cells), and laminin (protein that helps body structures hold together) are all comprised of peptides. Amino acids make up peptides, which in turn make up the proteins of our skin.

Peptides are found naturally in our bodies, but many of the peptides used in skin care products are from rice, wheat, or yeast. To stabilize them they are broken down and then put back together in the correct order for the action they are intended to take.

A peptide can be thought of as a cell communicator. It signals certain cells to act in a certain way. In skin care, peptides tell skin cells to act in a healthier, younger way. As we age, our skin begins to decline. Peptides are able to make our skin act more like it did when we were younger.

Each peptide has a different job so there are many peptides. Some tell the skin to produce more collagen; others can help with cell turnover, hydration, brown spots, sensitive skin or relax the muscle that cause fine lines and wrinkles. Some peptides target acne.

With more than 3.2 million peptides possible from amino acid combinations, the potential future of these signaling ingredients is wide ranging.


Source ACSP November 2014 ” The Straightforward Guide to Peptides.”



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Is It Possible To Make My Hair Grow Faster?



Young Blonde GuyThere are many products on the market that support hair growth, but there is no miracle formula. In my waxing business, I encounter clients who have too much hair in unwanted areas: nose, ears, lip and body. Meanwhile, they would kill to have that unwanted hair move to their heads.

Try these tips to support hair growth on your head!

  • Eat protein at breakfast and lunch – Fueling your system early and often will ensure that enough nutrients are left over later in the day for tissue regeneration.
  • Wash hair every other day – Not washing enough can invite buildup that impedes growth.
  • Massage your scalp – Stimulation increases blood circulation at the follicles, which improves the hair’s texture.
  • Be smart about supplements – Vitamin deficiency can contribute to hair loss and shedding. If you don’t eat meat, be sure to take a daily multivitamin with zinc, iron, and B12 to balance out your diet. We all know a vegetarian whose hair started falling out because they were not getting enough protein.
  • Be gentle with your hair - Avoid pulling your hair with a brush or comb.  If your hair is tangled, try using a leave in conditioner.  They’ve come a long way and will leave your hair smooth and silky.


 Adapted from: InStyle/SEPTEMBER 2014
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Is That Green Smoothie Making You Fat?

Green smoothie with parsley on wooden tableWe’ve been programmed to think that we get fat from soda, energy drinks, candy, dessert, and the bread basket. But sugar often lurks in seemingly healthy foods—green juices, whole wheat bread, Greek yogurt with fruit, granola, almond milk, coconut water, marinara sauce, and condiments like ketchup and fat-free balsamic vinaigrette.  Next time you are at the market, read the labels of the products you buy.  That yogurt that is fat free and healthy for you can have 14 grams of sugar.

These sugars not only make us gain weight, especially belly fat, but they also contribute to mood problems such as depression and the inability to focus as well as fatigue, gas, bloating, and inflammation. That’s why the World Health Organization recently proposed cutting its recommended total intake of added sugars for adults in half, to about 25 grams a day (six teaspoons). *

Let’s be clear: we need sugar. But not all sugar is created equal. An apple has sugar naturally in the form of fructose, but it’s also packed with phytonutrients and fiber, which counteract the negative effects its inherent sweetness may have.  What happens when fructose isn’t piggybacked by fiber?  It heads for your liver and starts the production of fat. It heads for your liver and starts the production of fat.

So what do you order at the juice bar? Avoid the smoothies with uber fruit to cut the bitter taste of the veggies. Try adding lemon, basil, celery, cucumber, avocado, and chia seeds instead to enhance the taste of your vegetable smoothie .

Your belly will thank you!


* Source: Bazaar Magazine September 2014
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