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12 Best Ways To Prevent Stretch Marks
It is much easier to prevent stretch marks on your skin than to minimize or reverse them later. If you are trying to become pregnant, if you just found out that you are pregnant, or if you plan on starting a body building routine, then you will want to pay attention to this article.
Not all stretch marks happen because of an overstretching of the skin; other factors such as a genetic predisposition or certain medications can increase your chances of developing stretch marks.
Want to know the best ways to prevent stretch marks before they raise their ugly red heads? Keep reading! We will outline the 12 best ways you can prevent the most common types of stretch marks, and keep that smooth, lovely skin no matter your age.
If you are pregnant or if you are taking certain medications, always consult your doctor before consuming any supplements or herbal products for your own safety, and for the safety of your little one.
Believe it or not, many people get stretch marks because of a deficiency of zinc. This natural trace mineral is used in the production of collagen, which keeps the skin firm and flexible. It also has plenty of antioxidant compounds that can help prevent free radical damage. You can take a supplement after speaking with your doctor for the proper dosage or get more zinc by consuming more whole grains, nuts, organic beef, chicken, eggs, and legumes.
2. Coconut Oil
This is one of the best skin moisturizers ever! Rub virgin coconut oil into your skin at least twice a day for best results, rubbing it in thoroughly. Other oils that work well are avocado oil, emu oil, olive oil, and shea butter.
3. Vitamin C
For beautiful skin, vitamin C is a must! The body uses this vitamin to build both cartilage and collagen. Besides improving your immune system, this vitamin stops the damage caused by free radicals, which literally eat collagen and elastin. Your body doesn’t absorb vitamin C very well from supplements, so get it from natural sources such as red bell peppers, broccoli, parsley greens, guavas, oranges, kale, grapefruit, blueberries, turnips, and strawberries.
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4. Castor Oil Packs
These are one of the best ways to prevent stretch marks, especially pregnancy stretch marks. This works as a humectant, which means that it draws moisture to itself, keeping your skin well hydrated and more flexible. To use this method, apply a thick layer of castor oil over the area. Wrap the area in plastic wrap or Saran wrap, and then apply a heating pad or a hot water bottle to the area for 20 to 30 minutes. Repeat this at least four or five times a week.
Gelatin is a terrific way to prevent stretch marks by adding more collagen to your diet. Collagen formation is absolutely essential for your skin’s overall elasticity. In case you didn’t realize it, gelatin is just another word for collagen. You can add more gelatin to your diet by making bone broth and drinking at least a cup every day. If you aren’t a fan of bone broth, use it to make gravy, soup, casseroles, or boil your rice in it. Alternately, you can use a gelatin powder (available in every supermarket) and add it to any drink. It won’t gel up and has no taste. Gelatin will not only improve your skin elasticity, but it will improve your sleep, reduce inflammation, encourage health, and reduce joint pain.
6. Eat A Healthy Diet
Eat a balanced diet high in vitamin C and E, silica, and zinc, as well as other nutrients to naturally nourish your skin and keep it strong. Vitamin C is vital for the creation of connective skin tissue. Zinc and silica help in the synthesis of collagen, and silica produces collagen. Eat plenty of seeds, nuts, and healthy fats such as avocados and coconut oil, seeds, nuts, strawberries, collard greens, green beans, Brazil nuts, blueberries, spinach, red bell peppers, and citrus fruits.
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7. Avoid Prolonged Use of Corticosteroids
Although corticosteroids can be extremely helpful for some skin problems, prolonged use of topical corticosteroids cause thinning of the skin, which weakens it and makes it more prone to develop permanent stretch marks. Use these medications sparingly or intermittently to prevent stretch marks.
8. Get Your Vitamin E On!
This powerful antioxidant protects the collagen in your skin from free radical damage, which means your skin will be more elastic and flexible. Eat more foods high in vitamin E including almonds, sunflower seeds, spinach, pumpkins, olives, avocados and pumpkins. You can also massage your skin with pure vitamin E oil or a cream containing vitamin E. You can also consume a vitamin E supplement after checking with your doctor.
9. Dry Brushing
Most people don’t know just how great dry brushing is for the skin and the body overall. Dry brushing will exfoliate the skin, remove the buildup of dead skin cells and trapped dirt, open pores, and stimulate circulation. Open pores will help the skin absorb any oils or creams you wish to apply, and improved circulation will remove toxins as well as bring fresh blood to the skin, removing old cells. Before showering or bathing, brush your skin in long sweeping strokes towards the heart using a soft, natural bristle brush designed for this purpose. Do this before each shower for about five minutes. You don’t need to brush so hard your skin turns red; gentle strokes will do the job just fine. Look for brushes with longer handles so you can reach your back and other hard-to-reach areas.
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10. Use Oil Blends
You can moisture your skin naturally by creating oil blends that support healthy skin and keep it moisturized. For example, you can mix one cup of coconut oil with one cup of olive oil. Add the contents of six vitamin A capsules and four tablespoons of vitamin E oil to the above mixture. Massage this healing oil into your skin twice each day.
Alternately, you can mix coconut oil, shea butter, and cocoa butter by heating these just a bit in a double boiler. You can add some vitamin E oil to this mixture if you like. This is a terrific homemade “body butter” that will really help to prevent stretch marks.
Another healing combination is to add a few drops of orange oil in some vitamin E oil and then apply this solution to your skin twice each day.
11. Watch Your Weight
Rapid weight gain leads to stretch marks. Even though you might be eating for two, you don’t have to put on more weight than your doctor recommends. For those of you who are planning to do some muscle building at the gym, you are more likely to develop stretch marks when you lift very heavy weights with low repetitions so that you bulk up quickly. Build lean muscle mass and avoid stretch marks by using only moderate weights and increasing the reps.
12. Get Regular Exercise
Although you might think exercise will lead to stretch marks, the opposite it is true. Regular, moderate exercise encourages circulation, which nourishes the skin. It also improves skin elasticity as well as toning the muscles! Regular exercise will also go a long way towards regulating hormones and removing toxins from the body. If you are pregnant, you can do light exercise after speaking to your doctor.