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Your Skin--A Mind-Beauty Connection
on October 5, 2008
A FirstLook Feature
Book Review: The Mind-Beauty Connection: 9 Days to Reverse Stress, Aging and Reveal More Youthful, Beautiful Skin (Free Press, 2008) by Amy Weschler, M.D.
Author Amy Weschler is one of only two physicians in the United States board certified in both dermatology and psychiatry. She is also a member of the RealAge Scientific Advisory Board.
Following in the recent tradition of whole-body medicine, Dr. Weschler has identified the correlation between health, aging skin, and the mind in her new book. All of these factors play a part in how we look and feel. As a doctor, the most common skin problems she sees are premature aging and adult acne, both of which are frequently caused by stress and exhaustion.
Key points of The Mind-Beauty Connection:
* 70-80% of our health and longevity is up to us.
* Skin cells need water, oxygen, vitamins, nutrients.
* Cosmetics are not regulated by the Food and Drug Administration.
* The only proven wrinkle-reducers and age fighters are retinoids.
* "A good moisturizer will do more for you than drinking 20 gallons of water a day." (See pp. 31 for necessary ingredients.)
* Americans have about 50 minor stress attacks each day.
* Stress affects the mind, body, skin, and aging.
* Eat: fruits & vegetables, nuts, seeds, olive oil, lean protein, and whole grains.
The Mind-Beauty Connection addresses what we can do for our skin during each decade, skin cancer, sunscreens, sugar consumption and its relation to wrinkles, liver spots, sun damage, acne, tattoo removal, etc... Likewise Dr. Weschler explores and explains natural at-home and more advanced treatments.
Dr. Weschler writes that approximately $2 billion is spent on antiaging creams each year. Not promoting any particular product (This is key.), she explains what to look for when making purchases. Before running to the store, we are encouraged to take her skinage test and her self image test, defining how old our skin is when compared with our chronological age, helping us to understand ourselves better. I found the self-image test to be quite interesting.
Dr. Weschler also answers common questions and gives a 4-step wrinkle fighting strategy and lists 7 free things to do for your skin. Her biggest beauty bargains can be found on p. 34--it's great!
Should you read this book? Yes. Many of us are still unaware of how to take care of our skin, nor are we always aware of the importance of doing so. How we look and how we feel are a clear reflection of who we believe ourselves to be.