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Mother Nature’s Botox: Collagen and Other Alternatives

collagen

There’s actually a very good, innate reason we care about the appearance of our hair, skin and nails. Not only are they a reflection of beauty but they are also a sign of our overall well-being. Many people wonder what are alternatives to botox for maintaining youthful, healthy-looking skin.

True beauty comes from within, and not just our personality and character. The health of our skin, hair, and nails paints a picture of how healthy we are on the inside and how well-nourished we are.

When we are deficient in nutrients, our body’s wisdom is to pull first from the areas that can afford it (skin, hair, and nails) and send those nutrients to our vital organs instead. Thus, skincare, hair, and nail issues are a sign that something inside of us is out of balance or lacking.

Micronutrient deficiencies show up in our outward appearance:

  • Thinning hair or white spots on the nails can indicate a zinc deficiency.
  • Easy bruising, petechiae and skin tears can occur due to a lack of antioxidants from vitamin C.
  • Brittle nails can mean we are low in protein or in silica, an important mineral for collagen production.

The Importance of Collagen

When we think of beauty and looking healthy and youthful, we often think of collagen. This is because collagen is one of the most abundant proteins in the human body and is very important for structural tissues, like skin, hair and nails. As we age, our body’s natural ability to produce collagen declines, leading to fine lines and a lack of skin elasticity. Slowing down collagen degradation is key to decreasing the signs of aging and supporting healthy aging and tissues.

So how do we do that? So, what are alternatives to Botox? One option is to start with collagen supplements, most often in the form of powder or liquids.

Choosing the Right Collagen Supplement

When selecting a collagen supplement, it is best to choose high-quality products from good sources. Actual collagen comes from animal sources, usually bovine, chicken, or marine. Opt for grass-fed or wild-caught sources for higher quality and choose collagen in the form of peptides for higher absorbability. Two great options are:

  • Collagen Peptides Powder by Vital Proteins: Vital ProteinsCollagen Peptides are neutral in flavor and great for adding to water, coffee, smoothies, recipes, and more. They are also paleo-friendly and kosher.
  • Multi Collagen Protein Powder by Ancient Nutrition: Multi Collagen Protein Powder by Ancient Nutrition provides five Botox alternatives, including collagen types (Collagen Type I, II, III, V, and X) from four different food sources.

Botanical Collagen Boosters

In addition to collagen supplements, there are also botanical collagen boosters, which are herbs that help our bodies enhance natural collagen synthesis and increase the efficacy of any collagen supplements we are taking. These herbs are consumed internally as supplements unless otherwise specified and include:

  • Gotu Kola: Known as “mother nature’s botox,” it structurally repairs collagen, strengthens collagen integrity, and promotes healing of collagen in the body.
  • Horsetail: This contains the mineral silica, which contributes to collagen structure and integrity, giving elasticity to tissue, connective tissue, hair, skin, nails, and bone.
  • Stinging Nettle Leaf: A “mineralizer” abundant in zinc, magnesium, manganese, and iron, which are important for microcirculation and good skin oxygenation.
  • Calendula (Marigold): This herbal product is a great topical in an oil base for healing skin, reducing inflammation, eczema, insect bites, dermatitis, or skin wounds.
  • Licorice: Sometimes called “Mother nature’s steroid,” licorice can be applied topically for eczema and any inflammatory skin issues.
  • Cleavers: Cleavers can be used for acne and lymphatic drainage, or the toxin waste removal of the skin.
  • Chaste Tree/Vitex: This one is for hormonal acne at any age, in males or females.

Other Factors for Health and Beauty

In addition to collagen and botanical boosters, there are a few important vitamins and minerals needed for skin health and collagen production, including vitamins A, E, B complex, C, and zinc.

The following practices are also essential for good health and beautiful skin:

  • Eating a whole food diet with healthy omega-3 fats, fruits, veggies, and fermented foods
  • Drinking plenty of water
  • Supporting gut health with probiotics and fiber
  • Other non-surgical options to Botox are facial massage or microneedling to help revitalize the blood flow and elastin of skin tissue, helping with firming support.

The Role of Stress Management

More than just our diet, we need to look at our overall lifestyle and mindset if we truly want to thrive and glow. Stress and inflammation speed up aging and the degradation of collagen, also known as “inflamm-aging” (a term coined by Italian professor Claudio Franceschi, PhD).

Stress management and healthy coping practices are key to beauty and health, in addition to supporting your adrenals (the glands that make cortisol) with adaptogens like ashwagandha, rhodiola, and eleuthero. These help your body become more resilient to stress over time and work like anti-aging tonics.

For inflammatory skin conditions, the following mushrooms, herbs and spices are wonderful nutritional sources that can be regularly consumed internally in supplement form:

  • Reishi
  • Andrographis
  • Echinacea
  • Cat’s claw
  • Turmeric
  • Rosemary
  • Saffron

Conclusion

What are alternatives to Botox? When searching for alternatives, a holistic approach that includes collagen supplements, botanical collagen boosters, a nutrient-rich diet, and stress management techniques can help support healthy, youthful-looking skin from the inside out. If you have any questions, be sure to ask your dermatologist.

By nourishing our bodies with the right nutrients and adopting a lifestyle that promotes overall well-being, we can enhance our natural beauty and let our inner radiance shine through. Remember, true beauty starts from within, and by prioritizing our health, we can achieve the glowing, vibrant skin we desire.

To learn more, read about what is the best collagen supplement.

 

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