What is Glycation and why is it making our skin wrinkle, sag and dry out?

It’s sugar baby! Too much of it is not so sweet on your face!


First thing you need to know is that Glycation is a major cause of aging! Due to said Glycation our once firm, juicy collagen and elastin protein fibers, wrinkle, sag and dry out!


We all know outside factors such as sun exposure and pollution can trigger extrinsic/external skin aging, but scientific evidence points to another culprit: glucose/sugar-driven intrinsic or internal aging.

Glucose/sugar is a vital cellular fuel. However, based on the accelerated rate of aging seen in diabetics, chronic glucose/sugar exposure has long been known to affect how the body ages by a process called Glycation. (source)

In a nutshell, Glycation is when sugar molecules attach themselves to protein molecules (ie your collagen and elastin found in the dermis) causing Advanced Glycation End Products or AEG’s which cause the above protein fibers to become crystallized making them stiff and misshapen.  (source)

Most of what we know about Glycation comes from diabetes research. The damage resulting from a diabetics sustained high blood sugar leads to chronic inflammation, which causes all kinds of problems throughout the body

So what happens to our collagen and elastin when there is too much sugar in our systems? Well, it becomes weak, less juicy and bouncy, causing wrinkles fine lines and sagging not to mention the overall dull pallor we all love (not!).  Additionally, as if all that weren’t bad enough, the presence of these AEG’s make your skin more vulnerable to things like, pollution, fluorescent lighting and UV damage.


Can we stop Glycation? Not completely, but don’t worry your pretty tiger head, it’s not all bad news! Reducing your refined white sugar and high fructose corn syrup intake can help slow the Glycation process and with the right skincare ingredients, you can topically help protect and regenerate higher quality collagen and elastin.


What can you look for in your skincare products to help prevent and reduce Glycation?

In Health and Happiness

Juline Hamilton

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