CoQ10 for Heath and Beauty, Part I

Question and Answer logoQuestion:  There is  five foot shelf of CoQ10 products in  my vitamin store and I have also seen it on the label  of  moisturizers and serums.  What is it and should I being using  it?  And if yes, what  form should I buy?

Answer: This  seemingly  simple question has a complicated answer.   Let’s start  with the easy part.  CoQ 10 is similar to a vitamin and is a powerful antioxidant.  It is  made by the body and is essential for providing energy to the cells.  As with so  many self made substances,  the levels drop  both as we  age  and in health problems such as Alzheimer’s, diabetes, some cancers,  Parkinson’s disease  and heart disease.

The assocition between lower levels of CoQ10 and health issues  have led   to the study of the benefits of CoQ … Continue Reading…

Can Your Sunscreen Lower Vitamin D?

Vitamin DI’m not subtle  when it comes to my enthusiasm for sunscreens and the numbers from the Skin Cancer Foundation  support my views:

* Up to age 60, up to 90% of skin aging is actually sun damage

* 5 million people in the US  are treated each year for some form of skin cancer

* The incidence of skin cancer has risen 77% between 1992 and 2006

* 90% of all non-melanoma skin cancers are due to UV rays

* Melanoma is the  most common form of cancer for young adults  25-29

Despite these numbers I hear  many reasons  ( excuses?) for not using sunscreens and most of them are easily refuted.   But then there is the issue of vitamin D.

Vitamin D 101

Vitamin D is an essential … Continue Reading…

The True Beauty Vitamin? by Deb Chase

Vitamin pillsLast week I received a simple question that did not have a simple answer– what  is the most important vitamin for my skin, the true beauty vitamin?   Just about every nutrient has been promoted for skin  health, but three  keep making the list:

1. Vitamin E-

Vitamin E is a  powerful anti-oxidant found in vegetable oils, nuts, seeds and leafy green vegetables.  Studies have shown that  it can block free radicals and  ( in theory) reverse signs of aging.    There are also  suggetions that vitamin E   can reduce scar formation. But  sad to say the impact and benefit of  vitamin E  has  been somewhat oversold. Vitamin E creams and cleansers  have been shown to  actually provoke breakouts in oily or acne prone skin.  And as for help in scar reduction, numerous researchers report  it … Continue Reading…

Its Fashion Flash Monday

Fashion Flash logoIts Fashion Flash Monday, New Year’s Eve Edition,  hosted by Barbara of The Best of Everything After 50.  The Fashion Flash bloggers have cranked it up  to end 2013 with the best of the best  fashion and beauty tips:

* Jackie of Aging Backwards  takes an honest look  at New Year’s Resolutions

* Fab Over 40 ends the year with a not  to be  missed plan for reviving dull, dry skin

*Prime Beauty shows how to get  that  special beauty glow by using the right products

*Black Cat Plus proves that beauty is never based on size

* Fabulous After 40  shares the best looks of 2013

* Moving Free with Mirabai reveals the top five fitness myths

* Staness of Menopause  Makeover  shares her recipe for Pomegranate Champagne punch– … Continue Reading…

Scared of Vitamins by Deborah Chase

Vitamin pills This has not been a  good  time for the vitamin industry. A recent story  in the New York Times  reported  that vitamin supplements were not what they seemed.  Some were  contaminated by rodent poop while others had 200X recommended levels of selenium.  And then there were those Ayurvedic  supplements which contained  potentially harmful levels  of lead, mercury and arsenic.

Now in December no less than three studies showed that multivitamin supplements  had no health benefits.  Research out of Harvard  Medical School gave 6000 men over 65 a daily multivitamin pill and measured their brain function.  At the end of 12 years, the multi vitamin made  no difference  in cognitive ability. The much  larger US Preventive Service Task Force followed 300,000 men and women who took multi vitamins.  The result?  No change in heart and … Continue Reading…

Q&A– Can ceramide supplements help my skin?

Question and Answer logoQuestion-  Dr Oz recently recommended ceramide supplements for better skin.   I know you recommend  moisturizers with ceramides.  Do you  also take ceramide pills?

Answer- I love  Dr Oz as much as the rest of  America, but in this case I am not that enthusiastic about these supplements.  To start off, there is only a single  small study ( as in ONE)  that looks at their value as supplements and that was done by the company that  is  selling ceramide supplements.

Then there are the supplements themselves.  They are made from plant derived ceramides and there is certainly a great deal of difference between  plant cells and human  skin cells.  It is also hard to figure out just how much ceramide is in each capsule– or even what the correct dose would be.  Some brands  are primarily vitamin E and/or a propriatory … Continue Reading…