‘Inflammageing’ masterclass with Alexia Blake
Is inflammageing another buzzword, or something to be concerned about? Continue reading to learn more, or you can also read our White Paper on the 5 A’s of Cannabinoid Skincare.
What is inflammageing?
Inflammageing is chronic, low-level inflammation that accelerates cellular ageing processes. Hallmarks of inflammageing include increased levels of circulating inflammatory agents referred to as pro-inflammatory cytokines, as well as impairment in cellular functioning and cell division known as senescence.
What causes it?
Inflammation is caused by internal factors such as diet and stress, and also by external factors including UV exposure, bacterial pathogens, chemical irritants, and allergens. While inflammation can (in some cases) serve as part of our body’s natural immune response to protect against further injury and infection, a growing body of evidence is revealing that chronic inflammation left unchecked may in fact accelerate ageing processes.
To make matters worse, once the inflammageing process has started, the increase in senescent cells with impaired functionality, breakdown of the skin’s extracellular matrix, and dysregulated immune activity that it creates can contribute to even more inflammation, creating a cyclical relationship between inflammation and ageing that worsens over time.
How does it affect the skin?
Inflammageing causes several changes in the skin. It can lead to a restructured and disorganized extracellular matrix, meaning that the arrangement of lipids and even proteins such as collagen and elastin in our skin becomes altered (and not in a good way). This can manifest as a loss of elasticity, fine lines and wrinkles, and an impaired barrier function resulting in drier and more sensitive skin.
Inflammageing can also cause an accumulation of immune cells with impaired functionality, which has been associated with an increased risk of skin infection and an impaired ability of skin to repair following injury or infection.
How can we stop inflammaging?
- Incorporate anti-inflammatory ingredients into your lifestyle. When it comes to skincare, cannabinoids such as CBD and CBG have been shown to prevent and reduce inflammation caused by UV exposure, chemical irritants, and bacterial pathogens, making them anti-inflammatory powerhouses.
- Minimize exposure to inflammatory stimuli. This includes UV rays, chemical irritants and inflammatory foods such as refined sugars, seed oils and other processed foods.
- Stay hydrated. Our cells need water to maintain proper function of various activities including detox and repair.
- Make time for exercise, which has been shown to slow down ageing processes by combating stress, improving circulation and improving cellular mitochondria activity, which act as our cell’s energy generators.
- Sleep! This is when the body enters repair mode, so be sure to prioritize a healthy sleeping schedule as much as possible.
- Lastly, be kind to your skin and remember, less is more! No need to strip, peel, and exfoliate every day.