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Can Exercise Improve my skin?

It’s amazing how often patients suggest… “If I exercise more my loose skin will get tighter right?”  Boy don’t we all wish it was as simple as that.  Unfortunately it doesn’t work that way.  Without getting to scientific about it all let’s discuss skin changes with weight, child birth, sun damage, and other aspects of mother nature.

Exercise is a great thing, most of us could use more of it and it’s great in assisting weight control, muscle tone, maintaining bone density, and keeping our heart strong and our blood pressure down.  Exercise cannot tone your skin your skin however.  Good muscle tone will show nicely “under the skin” but the skin itself doesn’t change as much as we’d like with fitness alone; some just not much.

In fact, if your fitness means being outside swimming, hiking, biking, running, gardening, playing tennis, or golfing the fact is the Arizona sun may be aging your skin significantly while you’re getting more fit everywhere else.

Don’t get me wrong; I’m an Arizona boy and I love my time outdoors in the sun.  It is why we all choose to live here.  Just make sure you are vigilant with quality sunblock, consistent with hydration and try to do the outdoor activity when the sun isn’t beating you down with noontime intensity.  Quality sunscreen contains ingredients that are physical blockers i.e.; titanium dioxide and or zinc oxide.

Moderate exercise does improve blood flow to tissues balances our blood sugar lowers our blood pressure and can smooth out our hormone/endocrine physiology.  Some of these physiologic parameters are good for the skin physiology, but again watch the sun damage.  A significant component of skin aging is genetically driven and exercise can’t compensate for your genes.  Excessive exercise is not necessarily good for you either.  Remember your parent’s adage “everything in moderation.”  Excessive exercise can lead to low grade inflammation in the body, the joints, the organ systems and that’s not a good thing.  So be smart and be consistent with steady moderate exercise and in the long run you’ll be better for it.

Unfortunately if there is stretching of the skin from pregnancy, weight changes, whatever the cause you may need the tricks of our trade with surgery, lasers, truSculpt or other skin tightening procedures to accomplish your goal.  Don’t stop exercising; jsu don’t think you can exercise your “skin” back to youth.

 

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