Beat the summer - sleep well, eat well for glowing skin

 (Khaleej Times) The summer is here finally and so are skin problems such as acne, rashes, sunburn and tanning. But all it takes to deal with them is a little hygiene, good sleep, lots of water and a healthy diet plan, say experts.

Healthy skin reflects overall health and so it is important to take care of it rather than relying on expensive cosmetics, says clinical nutritionist Ishi Khosla.

“A clear and glowing skin reflects overall health. This requires a well-balanced fibre- rich diet, plenty of fluids, regular exercise, no smoking and avoiding excessive exposure to sun,” Khosla said.

Khosla, who is the director at Whole Foods India and founder-president of Celiac Society for Delhi, also suggests specific nutrients for good skin.

“The important nutrients for skin include proteins, essential fats, vitamin A, E, C, B complex, selenium, zinc and copper,” she said.

A regular, sound sleep pattern is also a must, says homeopath Kalyan Banerjee.

“Including natural foods in diet, such as fruits, veggies and a lot of water in one’s daily diet, along with uninterrupted sleep automatically brings a glow on the face,” Banerjee said.

While a lot of youngsters are opting to go under the knife for achieving flawless skin, it can be achieved without it too, suggests cosmetic surgeon Anup Dhir.

“Saturated fatty, oily food along with caffeine and processed, junk food and cold drinks should be avoided,” Dhir said, adding that the “eight glasses of water a day” mantra is indispensable.

“Water not only helps you feel fresh but it also prevents dehydration and will help wash out a lot of toxins,” he said.

Dhir says water must also be put to good use for washing the face well!

“Wash your skin twice daily with a chemical free, mild face wash. Sometimes, one should also splash plain water on their skin. Wiping the skin with tissue papers can help reduction of oil. Avoid touching your skin with dirty hands as it leads to more pimples,” he said.

And no heavy make-up please as it blocks the pores, leading to more acne.

Salicylic acid/glycolic acid-based creams or cleansers can help in reducing oil secretion and help in keeping acne under control, suggests Madhurima Sharma, cosmetic, plastic and laser surgeon, Atelier Aesthetic Clinic.

“Protection from sun is very important as ultraviolet rays cause damage and can give sun spots, tanning and pre-mature skin ageing.

“Wear a scarf when out in sun, use dark rimmed sunglasses which cover more of your face, carry an umbrella and wear loose cotton clothes... it will be very helpful,” Sharma said.

Apart from using natural methods of skin protection, one should invest in a good and suitable sunscreen, with a high sun protection factor (SPF).

“Applying sunscreen just once in the morning is not enough. Re-application of sunscreen three to four times a day is required. It’s important that you apply sunscreen 20 to 30 minutes before going out in the sun. Even water resistant sunscreen needs to be applied more than three or four times a day,” said Sharma.

But she warns against reuse of old sunscreen lotion.