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Wednesday, November 23, 2011

This Thanksgiving, hit the (cranberry) sauce!

The humble cranberry may be a perennial source of debate at Thanksgiving dinner - love 'em or hate 'em, fresh or canned, jellied or whole - but in the dermatological community, the verdict is clear: cranberries are a wonderful source of antioxidants, so don't hold back when they come around the table this year. You might be thinking, why are antioxidants so important?  Every day, our skin is under assault - from UV rays, pollution, or cigarette smoke, for example. That damage causes free radicals, which are oxygen molecules that have lost an electron.  As a result, those unpaired molecules try to steal electrons from other molecules, including vital skin components. The result is visible skin damage, in the form of lines, wrinkles, and redness. Luckily, antioxidants can supply those missing electrons, calm attacking molecules, and prevent damage.
In a nutshell, antioxidants are among the most important preventive ingredients in the skin care arsenal. They can effectively prevent (and minimize) redness and inflammation, and are essential for slowing the signs of skin aging.  The good news - when it comes to neutralizing free radicals, you don't need to pick one favourite ingredient. Cranberries, green tea, coenzyme Q10, vitamins C and E - they're all powerful antioxidants, and using several of them is an even better option for healthy skin.  Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!

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