Healing power of cucumber

Studies indicate that cucumbers have numerous benefits internally, externally and even emotionally. Doctor Murad recently wrote a paper to share the findings on this incredible fruit (Cucumbers are not vegetables) and has given us a few takeaways for skin health and emotional care.

As a food, cucumbers offer superior hydration, as they are about 95% water. Cucumbers have long been associated with the spa world and topical skin treatments. When you think of cucumber slices placed gently over the eyes, they are doing far more than just having a cooling effect on the skin. Cucumber slices offer many benefits to both the eyes and surrounding tissues through their hydrating properties, which work to reduce dehydration by their high levels of vitamin K that help to reduce dark circles, and the lignans they contain reduce inflammation. Additionally, cucumbers have been uses to treat wrinkles, sunburns and have been used as a moisturizer and skin brightener. The benefits of cucumbers are not just relegated to topical treatment. In fact, abundant research has shown what can happen when the fruit is consumed.

Cucumbers are related to melons and are a relatively low-calorie food at just 15 calories per cup. They contain high levels of powerful antioxidants, vitamins and minerals. With such a high level of water content and the added bonus of naturally occurring nutrients and trace minerals, cucumbers could be great supplements to drinking water or even serve as an alternative to consumer sports drinks. As I always say, the best way to replenish the body and quench thirst is to by consuming water through foods. Choosing foods with a high water content and offers the cells in our bodies, the much-needed hydration they require for basic everyday functioning as well as the vital nutrients to repair and strengthen the cell walls. Studies now suggest that cucumbers don’t solely hydrate, they provide added elements that your body needs to fortify and regenerate itself. Researchers also identified that cucumbers could act as free radical scavengers (which help against skin damage) and could also potentially act as a SPF (value of 0.2). Studies show that cucumber extract may decrease melanin and sebum, resulting in skin whitening and anti-acne effects. How exactly the cucumber does this, is not clearly understood, as yet but, the cucumber holds an exciting future in skincare.

Cucumbers also have benefits when it comes to emotional care. Stress is a threat that is commonly recognized to have devastating effects on our health and wellbeing. Chronic stress resulting from environmental sources or Cultural Stress (link to cultural stress articles) can lead to cell damage, one such example is inflammation. When you have damaged cells, you also have more dehydrated cells (which can result in significant aging and illness). Addressing water loss and inflammation with cucumber consumption could be an effective way to lower stress and fight against the aging process.

So next time you reach for that fridge snack or are writing your shopping list, make sure that cucumbers take top place.

It would also be impossible not to call out a few of Doctor Murad’s skincare products which contain cucumber:

Extracts were taken from “Evaluating the potential benefits of cucumbers for improved health and skin care” – H. Murad, M.A nyc

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Bridal Beauty – top picks to prep your skin on the big day.

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We know you want to look flawless on your big day! Having great skin is just as important as wearing the perfect bridal gown, so start your pre-wedding skincare countdown now. Our Murad skincare experts put together this helpful six-month timeline to follow for glowing, gorgeous skin on your big day.

Pre-Wedding Skincare Countdown: A few tips for a beautiful skin

 6 months to go
  •  Take daily dietary supplements to give your body the building blocks it needs to help every cell in every system.
  • Now that you’re engaged, everyone will be paying extra attention to your hands! Rejuvenate them with a monthly manicure and moisturize daily (We recommend our Youth Builder Rejuvenating AHA Hand Cream) to keep them looking and feeling soft and lovely.
3 months to go
  •  Stick to your workouts to reduce skin-damaging stress and wedding-planning anxiety.
  • Commit to a monthly facial routine to keep your complexion healthy and rejuvenated.
1 month to go
  •  Keep your skin smooth and glowing by exfoliating 1-2 times a week (We recommend trying our Skin Smoothing Polish).
  • Get your last facial 2-3 weeks before your big day to allow redness from extractions to resolve.
Week of the wedding
  •  Get a stress-relieving massage.
  • Keep your diet heavy on fruits and veggies and light on salty, processed foods, which can make your eyes look puffy and your body feel bloated. We suggest you read a bit more about the science behind eating fruits and veggies with Dr. Murad’s “Eat Your Water” research.
The Big Day

Remember that it’s likely something won’t go as planned or turn out the way you imagined it, but don’t let that ruin your day. As Dr. Murad says, “When you learn to be imperfect, your life will be more perfect.”

 

Here are top picks to prep your skin on the big day.

eye-lift-firm Say “Eye Do”

While the early-morning beauty prep gets underway, start with this professional-strength eye treatment. Its exclusive surface-filling and firming technologies work beneath the eye pads to instantly lift, firm and visibly reduce the appearance of lines and wrinkles.

hydrating-toner Happily Ever Hydrated

Spray a few spritzes of this refreshing toner to rehydrate skin and restore pH balance. The fresh peach scent also helps set the relaxing, pampering mood for the makeup and hair prep to come.

oil-control-mattifier Joined in Matte-rimony

Save yourself from a makeup meltdown during any outdoor photo shoots by applying this mattifying moisturizer with SPF 15. It helps control oil for up to 8 hours so you’ll stay picture-perfect all throughout your wedding day.

eye-cream 3-Tiered Treat

Between battling the never-ending to-do lists, last-minute crises and wedding jitters, getting a full night’s sleep might slip down the priority list. Keep under-eye creasing and puffiness at bay with this multi-active eye cream that firms, brightens and hydrates.

invisiblur Toast to a Flawless Future

Before you apply foundation, finish with this breakthrough product to treat, blur and protect. Its silky smooth formula blurs lines and imperfections, conceals pores, and primes skin, so you’ll look flawless in all your wedding photos.

We wish all the brides-to-be out there a joyful, stress-free, beautiful wedding day; one filled with moments you will cherish forever!

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The Power of Pomegranate

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Pomegranate contains a super antioxidant called ellagic acid, which is even more powerful that the antioxidants in green tea. Pomegranate appears to be effective against viruses, destroying them on contact. And it is especially effective in protecting cells from free radical damage.

Other compounds in pomegranate –the anthocyanidins –interact with ellagic acid to further boost its antioxidant potency. The powerful antioxidants in pomegranate work by boosting the levels of glutathione, a natural antioxidant in the body that helps protect the DNA in cells from free radical damage. Glutathione is also essential in helping the body recycle hormones such as estrogen, which also protect the skin cells.

Spring Cleansers Hydrators

Most Murad products contain antioxidants and are essential ingredients to receive the best results. Now you know why!

Doctor Murad Article by Howard Murad, M.D., FAAD, a world renowned skincare expert and founder of the Inclusive Health movement. Read more about Dr. Murad.

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Food Is Medicine

Before there was medicine, there was food. An emerging body of evidence suggests that if we ate a healthier diet, we might not need so much medication. Have you ever asked why certain things grow in some places and not in others? Take, for example, oranges, pomegranates, and apricots, which are grown in the Middle East and also in California. These fruits originally came from Southeast Asia but as people traveled, they carried the fruits with them for quick and easy nourishment. For example, sailors planted orange groves along their trade routes to prevent scurvy caused by a lack of vitamin C in the diet. But beyond ease of transportation and transplantation, each of these fruits served a health purpose.

Scientifically, we now know that oranges, pomegranates, goji berries and apricots are packed with vitamin C and other antioxidants, which can help combat cell oxidation and sun damage, and in the case of pomegranates, even boost natural damage, and in the case of pomegranates, even boost natural sunscreen levels, which is extremely helpful in warm, sunny climates. Going further, science has illuminated the importance of obtaining antioxidants from the diet because the body cannot make many of them, including vitamin C. Antioxidants also assist in the cellular renewal process and help cells stay plump with water.

 

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The ABC of Skin Health

In various forms, vitamins contribute to the health and youthfulness of skin. It is recommended to get these essentials from your daily meals but topical formulas offer extra benefits by incorporating some of the necessary vitamins.

Here’s how:

Vitamin A

– stimulates the renewal of new skin cells and tissue and it helps treat sun burns, acne, wounds, wrinkles and various aging signs. In skincare it is mostly used as retinol.

ginger3

Vitamin B

– has conditioning and moisturizing properties on skin. It is a complex of vitamins with great benefits for the entire body. The most common forms in skincare are labeled as biotin (vitamin B7) and panthenol (provitamin B5)

BL14_096-Retinol

Vitamin C

– essential for health, it is in fact an antioxidant that helps skin maintain elasticity and youthfulness by stimulating collagen production. On a label, you find it under names like L-ascorbic acid, ascorbyl palmitate etc.

Eat Your Water Recipe

Vitamin D

also an antioxidant that is essential to life. Helps cell turnover and supports the functions of other vitamins.

#itsallclear omega 3s

Vitamin E

– very important in skincare, this vitamin contributes to the UV protection, wound healing and skin hydration. It is effective when used in significant concentrations. Labeled as tocopherol, tocopheryl acetate, tocopheryl linoleate.

smoothie2

Vitamin F

– an essential fatty acid which is beneficial in skincare, it is a lipid that contributes to skin‘s health. Found in linoleic acid, omega-3, evening primrose oil, flaxseed oil.

Avocado

Vitamin K

– rarely found in skincare products because it is an expensive ingredient, it only becomes effective in high percentages. It contributes to healing bruises and under-eye dark circles.

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Age Spots – Not just an age problem

One of the first signs of aging is hyper-pigmentation, manifested through dark spots on your skin. Also known as liver spots, they have nothing to do with the liver, as almost in all cases they are caused by long-term sun exposure. At first, one may notice dark brown spots and patches on the hands or on the face, the areas that are almost all the time exposed to the sun. That’s why the spots will appear darker in these areas, more than they appear in other areas of the body. There can also be a genetic predisposition to developing age spots in a lifetime.

The first spots can appear in the early twenties and can go away in time through the skin’s natural regeneration process, if skin is protected when exposed to sun. Most of the dark spots appear with the aging process because that’s when skin loses its ability to regenerate fast. The dark color is caused by the melanocyte cells which produce an excess of melanin – the skin pigment, and this is gets deposited in the top layers of the skin.

These unpleasant spots can occasionally appear as a result of the use of birth control pills, hormonal imbalance, insufficient vitamin B in your body or skin reactions to perfumes and creams after sun exposure. Make sure you have a diet rich in Vitamin B and don’t apply perfumes (or products containing fragrance) directly on your skin prior to sun exposure. It is important to protect these spots from UVs even if they’re not sun related, because more sun can worsen the appearance

Treating hyper-pigmentation is best done with a melanin suppressant, its action leading to the slow recovery of the area and the lightening of the spot. Hydroquinone is the best known solution for dark spots but there are other useful alternatives like antioxidants, Azelaic Acid or Kojic Acid. It is important to avoid sun exposure – any direct UV exposure will darken the spots even more. Wear sunscreen or cover the area with clothes as much as possible; some of the melanin suppressants usually sensitize the skin and the reaction to UVs can darken the age spots even more.

Can you prevent dark spots and age spots from forming on your skin just by making lifestyle choices?

Dr. Howard Murad explains how a combination of skin care and Inclusive Health® can help you to prevent dark spots on your skin.

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Introducing: Rapid Collagen Infusion for Lips

love-your-lips

When it comes to skincare treatments, lips are often overlooked. However, it is good to remember that they are as exposed and vulnerable to aging as any other part of our face. As we age, the decline in collagen in our skin can cause lips and the skin around them to thin and wrinkle. We can all agree that only a few other things will age the face as dramatically as prominent lip lines., which is why we are happy to announce our latest lip product launch. To make it easier to give your lips the treatment they deserve, we’ve created a new kind of targeted care for lips based upon the breakthrough technology that powers our enormously popular Rapid Collagen Infusion.

Now you can start preventing lip lines, with Murad. This new product is suitable for all skin types and is now available for purchase on MuradCanada.com

Purchase Rapid Collagen Infusion for Lips

 

10746What does it do for you?

Designed to target the signs of ageing on and around the entire mouth area and lips, the translucent serum uses enhanced collagen technology to instantly plump and restore volume while powerful hydration boosters give silky smooth and soft lips.

 

BENEFITS:

• 81% of users said lips appeared plumper and more youthful after one week*
• 77% of users saw an improvement of lines and wrinkles after one week*
• Mustard Sprout Extract encourages circulation to increase volume and hydrate the lips
• Collagen Support Complex, an anti-aging peptide blend, boosts collagen production to reduce the appearance of vertical lip lines and wrinkles
• Apple Extract imparts long-lasting hydration for silky soft lips
• Shea Butter and Hyaluronic Acid balance moisture levels to enhance absorption and application

Find out more on how to use the Rapid Collagen Infusion for Lips on its product page. And for more skincare tips as well as tips and tricks to keep your entire body healthy from the inside out continue browsing our blog!

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Fade and Prevent Age or Sun Spots

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Regardless of your skin type or color, the most important step to prevent age and sun spots is to wear “Broad-spectrum protection”. This specific protection in SPF products means that it will protect your skin against both UVA and UVB rays. Sun spots are preventable, so seek shade as much as you can and do not over-expose your skin to the sun during which the sun’s harmful UV radiation are stronger: between 10 AM and 4PM. Have a look at Murad’s SPF products and find the one that best fits your skin concerns.

Protection is step 1, now let’s look at fading age and sun spots.

Essential-CThe first step to fading age spots is, of course, to actually fade the pigmented areas of the age spots. Murad Advanced Active Radiance Serum uses Resilient-C Complex™ that maximizes collagen production and skin brightening while providing all-day free radical protection. The product is formulated using Alpha Hydroxy Acids to exfoliate both surface skin and dead skin cells beneath the skin’s surface within follicles. Its Myrtle Extract also encourages new cell growth and help boost cell vitality. That means that the Vitamin C in Murad’s active radiance serum can penetrate deeper and work more effectively to lighten hyper-pigmented areas. The Alpha Hydroxy Acids also encourage the movement of the pigmented cells to the skin’s surface where they are more easily and rapidly treated.

Murad Advanced Active Radiance Serum can be used in both your morning and evening skin care regimen. Your Advanced Active Radiance Serum helps to restore tone and smooth texture and is clinically proven to improve skin firmness by up to 64% in just 15 minutes. To fade your age spots and sun spots, apply Murad Advanced Active Radiance Serum after you cleanse your skin and then Starter Kit Essential Cfollow up with a skin or face moisturizer. In addition to fading sun spots and age spots, this serum also improves skin’s overall tone by lifting away other darkened or dull areas of skin discoloration for an overall even skin tone. Its faster-acting formula with double the brighteners boosts radiance and reverses visible signs of environmental damage. It will preserve clarity and defend against future damage for lasting youthful radiance. Try our Environmental Shield line with an affordable starter kit to see if these products are a match.

Although daily SPF moisturizers and serum just like our Advanced Active Radiance Serum are essential, it is helpful to double up on your sun protection through healthy food. In fact consuming more food which contains Polyphenols, Carotenoids, and Vitamin C such as vegetables and fruits, will help your skin keep its natural glow and avoid inflammation. Read more about eating the right food for your skin: Eat Your Sunscreen!

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Before Medicine There Was Food

BL15_542-DrMBforeMedsFood

In today’s society, we are led to believe that the solution to virtually every problem in our lives—from health to happiness—is a pill. While many of those pills contain life-saving medicines that are evidence of the true power of science, many aspects of our lives can actually be improved by following the wisdom of our ancestors and taking advantage of health-boosting fruits and vegetables. That’s why I often tell my patients to remember, “Before there was medicine there was food.”

Since May is National Skin Cancer Awareness Month, it’s a great time to try to add foods to your diet that help boost your skin’s natural ability to protect itself from sun damage. Foods like broccoli and pomegranate are rich in compounds that have been shown to improve the protective performance of topical sunscreens. I call this approach eating your sunscreen.

Our digestive health is an area where good food choices can provide benefits that medicine simply can’t. A diet that is high in both soluble and insoluble plant fiber will help to absorb cholesterol and help to create the kind of environment that allows your gut flora to flourish. Your gut flora is made up of the good bacteria that help you digest your food and avoid irregularity. It also contributes to your overall immune system health. And, of course, treating yourself to a wonderful salad for lunch or dinner is a much nicer option than a daily dose of Milk of Magnesia.

Even the traditional practice of marinating meats in cooking herbs and spices—like garlic, pepper, thyme, rosemary and sage—helps to eliminate certain potentially harmful pathogens. And let’s not forget chocolate. The antioxidants in this sweet treat are now being investigated as agents to help stave off heart, brain and vascular diseases, including dementia and Alzheimer’s.

I encourage you to spend some time getting to know the “medicines” available in the produce aisle of your local market. Your body, spirit and bank account may all be the better for it.
Article by Dr. Howard Murad

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Which Serum is Right for you?

Quite a few of our customer ask us: “Should I be switching to another serum now that I’m a bit older?” or “Is this serum what I need for my skin concern?”. Those are all fair questions, as it is always valuable to re-evaluate your skincare routine every now and then. With quite a few serums to choose from, it can be a challenge determining which one is the best for your skin type or skin concern.  Therefore, we decided to create a friendly chart to help guide you to the serum that will provide exactly what you are looking for.

Infographic: Finding the right serum

Click on the serums below to learn even more about each of them:
1. Rapid Collagen Infusion
2. Intensive Age-Diffusing Serum
3. Advanced Active Radiance Serum
4. Sensitive Skin Soothing Serum
5. Complete Reform

We hope this helps, but please don’t hesitate to contact us with any questions, or comment below we’ll be happy to help!

 

Article by Elodie Rivet – Murad Beauty Advisor

 

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