Our skin is the largest organ in our bodies. As such, it performs numerous, critical functions non-stop around the clock. Our skin protects us from microbes, shields us from the elements, helps regulate body temperature, and permits the sensations of touch, heat, and cold. As our first line of defense, our skin is also constantly being barraged with toxins, weathered from stress, and worn down with time.
When B12 LOVE Founder and CEO, Dr. Shannon Wood Gallegos, created her signature “Fountain of Youth” IV drip formula, she wanted it to contain nutrients that not only help repair and rejuvenate the skin, but that also protect it from the traumas of stress, Mother Nature, and aging. In other words, a formula that would nourish skin from the inside out. So what does that mean, exactly?
Licensed Skin Therapist and B12 LOVE Naturopathic Medical Assistant, Sydney McClelland, says the Fountain of Youth is an amazing anti-aging nutrient IV because “not only does it hydrate your skin, but it contains very high amounts of Vitamin C and Zinc. Combined with B vitamins, minerals, amino acids, and especially if you add on the glutathione… nothing else compares for healthy, glowing skin.”
Below are 8 essential “Fountain of Youth” nutrients you need to age gracefully (or better yet, in reverse!)
1. Vitamin C
Vitamin C is an essential micronutrient, potent antioxidant, and cofactor for numerous enzyme reactions in the body. As far as skin health, vitamin C stimulates collagen synthesis (the primary protein responsible for maintaining structural integrity of the skin), protects skin against free radicals, and shields skin from irreversible UV-induced photodamage.
Biotin – also known as vitamin B7 – has multiple benefits, including facilitating metabolism and providing anti-inflammatory support. Biotin is also known to play a role in building keratin, which is a protein responsible for strengthening skin, hair and nails. Not surprisingly, biotin deficiency can result in skin rashes, hair loss, and brittle nails, which may be misdiagnosed (or dismissed entirely).
L-carnitine is an amino acid that is found in nearly all cells of the body. A main function of L-carnitine is to transport long-chain fatty acids into the mitochondria (the “powerhouse” of our cells) so they can be oxidized to produce energy. In addition to aiding in weight loss, research has shown that L-carnitine’s role in fat metabolism also helps to reduce oily skin.
Zinc is an essential mineral that has been used as a therapeutic modality for centuries, due to its potent anti-inflammatory and immune boosting benefits. It is especially beneficial for helping to repair inflammatory acne & scarring, protecting the skin from UV rays, and promoting skin elasticity. One study shows that “the combined photoprotective and elastic regenerative properties of zinc could be used for the development of effective anti-aging therapies.”
5. Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic acid)
Like all B-vitamins, pantothenic acid is required for efficient metabolism, so that our bodies have the energy and resources to rebuild tissues, muscles, and organs. It’s also immensely beneficial for maintaining moisture, reducing inflammation & blemishes, and enhancing the healing process in our skin.
6. Vitamin B6 (Pyridoxine)
Vitamin B6 (pyridoxine) is well-known for its beneficial effects on the central nervous system, and in particular, its role in balancing hormones. It’s no secret that imbalanced hormones can cause a range of problems, including adult acne, dry or oily skin, fine lines and wrinkles, inflammation, and more. Vitamin B6 also helps maintain normal levels of homocysteine – an amino acid that can become elevated in the presence of emotional stress and which has been linked to the acceleration of skin aging.
As the most abundant mineral in the human body, calcium is imperative for optimal functioning and aging. A recent study shows that calcium plays “a crucial role in keratinocyte differentiation, barrier formation, wound healing, and skin barrier homeostasis.” Translation: it’s a crucial component for skin, hair, and nail health. People with chronic low calcium levels often experience dry, itchy and red skin, as well as brittle, broken nails. Hypocalcemia can also contribute to alopecia, a condition that causes hair to fall out in patches.
We’ve talked about the many benefits of glutathione before, but the virtues of this master antioxidant cannot be overstated. Glutathione is a water-soluble tripeptide made from three amino acids: glutamate, cysteine, and glycine. As a potent antioxidant, it neutralizes free radicals, boosts the immune system and detoxifies the body. In addition to ridding our body of unwanted toxins, glutathione is used to reduce scars and skin blotches, and gives your skin a natural glow (aka, the “glow-tathione” effect).
Regardless of your age, healthy skin is the sign of a healthy body. Nourish your body with the right nutrients, and you will be rewarded with beautiful, youthful-looking skin.