Weight loss can be a huge accomplishment for people who are overweight or trying to shed a few pounds, but dropping weight isn't all gravy. One of the biggest risks of weight loss is how it affects your skin. If you don't take care of your skin when losing weight, serious consequences can result, including loose skin that can develop wrinkles and, ultimately, stretch marks. This can cause permanent scarring on your skin. Wrinkles can also age your skin's appearance in addition to acting as a precursor to stretch marks. Fortunately, there are several things you can do to keep your skin healthy and stave off wrinkles.
Moisturize your skin at least twice daily. Applying a topical moisturizer helps your skin in multiple ways--it locks in moisture that would otherwise evaporate from the skin, provides topical hydration of its own, and provides essential nutrients that keep your skin healthy and vibrant. Consider a moisturizer made from cocoa butter and containing vitamins C and E, which provide antioxidants to the skin and support the development of collagen and elastin. Apply moisturizer once in the morning and again at night before going to bed.
Drink plenty of water throughout the day--at least eight glasses. Drinking water is essential to keeping your skin healthy and elastic. While moisturizer is a huge help, water consumption is the most important aspect of keeping skin hydrated and healthy.
Stop smoking, if you currently do. Smoking--and even being around second-hand smoke--dries out your skin, which can exacerbate wrinkling of the skin.
Eat plenty of fruits and vegetables throughout the day. These foods provide valuable nutrients for your skin's health, and they also help hydrate the body and skin, since they are high in water content. Try to consume three to five servings of each every day for the greatest benefit.
Exercise several times a week. While exercise can increase weight loss, it also helps synthesize new muscle fibers that attach to the skin and hold it tight to your body. Building new muscle--even in small amounts--can keep the skin taut and healthy.