europa skin care : natural, organic & science-based skin care

Monday, February 13, 2017

DIY : DMAE cream

Topical cream that includes DMAE has a great effect on skin. It aids in tightening the muscles that keep your skin looking healthy to diminish the appearance wrinkles, lines, and sagging.

1.  DMAE in dry crystal or powder form, either loose or in capsules that can be opened. One bottle costs around $10 (health food store or online). I buy this 50-capsule bottle at my local Whole Foods for $8.99. (Bluebonnet’s DMAE 100 mg Vcaps are highly concentrated and provide the highest quality DMAE from 2-dimethylaminoethanol bitartrate.)

2.  Any skin lotion or skin cream you already like and use. It can be simple, inexpensive, organic - whatever you and your skin already like.

Mix the ingredients. For every four ounces of lotion, add one and fourth teaspoons of DMAE. Mix well. Keep covered until use.

Apply your DMAE cream daily. As with many cosmetics, be careful not to get any into your eyes. DMAE creams are known to work gradually over time and people report definite results from using it.


    Application of a DMAE-rich topical treatment results in almost instantaneous benefits. The skin looks firmer, lifted, less lined, and smoother. If a pea-sized drop of a DMAE-containing lotion is spread on one side of the face, gently rubbed into the nasolabial fold, around the eye, forehead, under the chin and on the neck, results can be seen in about 20 minutes. 

    The side of the face and jaw line with the DMAE will appear more contoured, the eye will be open wider, the nasolabial fold lessened. The effect is dramatic. There will also be an immediate reduction in lines and wrinkles. DMAE is also outstanding in tightening up the dimpled skin on the back of the thighs and the upper arms.

    Other  Benefits
    Continued use of DMAE lightens the age spots that are commonly seen on the face, back of hands and arms. These brown spots are formed from the accumulated lipofuscin deposits in the body. Lipofuscin is a waste product of the cells and usually appears in older people. Aside from the skin, lipofuscin is found in big quantities in the neurons and heart muscles. DMAE acts by flushing lipofuscin out from the body.

    Another age-defying effect of DMAE is its skin tightening action that slows down the inevitable natural sagging of the skin. Aside from plastic surgery, DMAE skin treatments seem to be among the most effective means to lift and tighten the appearance of facial skin.  It's hypothesized that this is because of DMAE’s cell-stabilizing ability, its boosting action on acetylcholine or its capability to banish lipofuscin from the body.

    Friday, February 10, 2017

    Avon NutraEffects

    Avon NutraEffects

    Avon NutraEffects has harnessed this power of nature with its new breakthrough Active Seed Complex made with chia seeds in its new skin care collection. According to the company, the seeds can hold up to 12-times their weight in water and are rich in omega-3 fatty acids. In addition to this, each NutraEffects formula is then blended with other nutrient rich seeds and skin loving antioxidants to target one of four skin care needs: hydration, balance, radiance, and signs of aging.    
    The combinations deliver healthier, more beautiful skin from day one. All products are suitable for sensitive skin, hypoallergenic, and paraben- and dye-free.

    The collection includes: Avon NutraEffects Active Seed Complex Hydration Daily Cream SPF15 and Gel Night Cream ($18), Avon NutraEffects Active Seed Complex Balance Daily Cream SPF15 and Gel Night Cream ($18), Avon NutraEffects Active Seed Complex Radiance Day Cream SPF20 and Night Cream ($18) and  Avon NutraEffects Active Seed Complex Ageless Multi-Action Day Cream SPF20, Night Cream, and Eye Cream ($18).

    Saturday, November 5, 2016

    Vitamin C : What is the difference between L ascorbic acid and ascorbic acid?

    In the rapidly expanding market of dietary supplements, it is possible to find vitamin C in many different forms with many claims regarding its efficacy or bioavailability. Bioavailability refers to the degree to which a nutrient (or drug) becomes available to the target tissue after it has been administered.

    Vitamin C also known as, ascorbic acid, L-ascorbic acid, dehydroascorbic acid, the antiscorbutic vitamin, L-xyloascorbic acid and L-threo-hex-2-uronic acidy-lactone, is a much talked about vitamin, with people claiming it as a cure-all for may diseases and problems - from cancer to the common cold.

    Yet, this miracle vitamin cannot be manufactured by the body, and needs to be ingested.

    The Bioavailability of Different Forms of Vitamin C (Ascorbic Acid) : 
    Natural vs. synthetic ascorbic acid
    Natural and synthetic L-ascorbic acid are chemically identical, and there are no known differences in their biological activity. The possibility that the bioavailability of L-ascorbic acid from natural sources might differ from that of synthetic ascorbic acid was investigated in at least two human studies, and no clinically significant differences were observed.

    • A study of 12 males (six smokers and six nonsmokers) found the bioavailability of synthetic ascorbic acid (powder administered in water) to be slightly superior to that of orange juice, based on blood levels of ascorbic acid, and not different based on ascorbic acid in leukocytes (white blood cells). 
    • A study in 68 male nonsmokers found that ascorbic acid consumed in cooked broccoli, orange juice, orange slices, and as synthetic ascorbic acid tablets are equally bioavailable, as measured by plasma ascorbic acid levels.
    Ester-C® contains mainly calcium ascorbate, but also contains small amounts of the vitamin C metabolites dehydroascorbate (oxidized ascorbic acid), calcium threonate, and trace levels of xylonate and lyxonate. In their literature, the manufacturers state that the metabolites, especially threonate, increase the bioavailability of the vitamin C in this product, and they indicate that they have performed a study in humans that demonstrates the increased bioavailability of vitamin C in Ester-C®. This study has not been published in a peer-reviewed journal. A small published study of vitamin C bioavailability in eight women and one man found no difference between Ester-C® and commercially available ascorbic acid tablets with respect to the absorption and urinary excretion of vitamin C. Ester-C® should not be confused with ascorbyl palmitate, which is also marketed as "vitamin C ester".

    What is the difference between Ester-C and regular Vitamin C? 

    • Mostly the acidity. Regular vitamin C is very acidic, and can cause increases in your blood acidity levels.  Ester C is made so that it is non-acidic, and has more bio-flavanoids in it.  This is a fancy word for additional nutrients to allow your body to absorb it better.

    Vitamin C with bioflavonoids

    Bioflavonoids or flavonoids are polyphenolic compounds found in plants. Vitamin C-rich fruits and vegetables, especially citrus fruits, are often rich sources of flavonoids as well. There is little evidence that the bioflavonoids in most commercial preparations increase the bioavailability or efficacy of vitamin C.

    The effect of bioflavonoids on the bioavailability of ascorbic acid has been examined in two published studies. A study of five men and three women found that a 500 mg supplement of synthetic ascorbic acid, given in a natural citrus extract containing bioflavonoids, proteins, and carbohydrates, was more slowly absorbed and 35% more bioavailable than synthetic ascorbic acid alone, wheen based on plasma levels of ascorbic acid over time and 24-hr urinary excretion of ascorbic acid. In that study, the ratio of bioflavonoids to ascorbic acid (weight per weight) was 4:1, which is much higher than most commercially available products. Another study in 7 seven omen and one man found no difference between the bioavailability of 500 mg of synthetic ascorbic acid and that of a commercially available vitamin C preparation with added bioflavonoids, where the ratio of bioflavonoids to ascorbic acid was 0.05:1.

    Kidney Stones

    Because oxalate is a metabolite of vitamin C, there is some concern that high vitamin C intake could increase the risk of oxalate kidney stones. Some but not all studies have reported that supplemental vitamin C increases urinary oxalate levels. Whether any increase in oxalate levels would translate to an elevation in risk for kidney stones has been examined in epidemiological studies. Two large prospective studies, one following 45,251 men for six years and the other following 85,557 women for 14 years, reported that consumption of ≥1,500 mg of vitamin C daily did not increase the risk of kidney stone formation compared to those consuming <250 mg daily. However, a more recent prospective study that followed 45,619 men for 14 years found that those who consumed ≥1,000 mg/day of vitamin C had a 41% higher risk of kidney stones compared to men consuming <90 mg of vitamin C daily—the current recommended dietary allowance. In this study, low intakes (90-249 mg/day) of vitamin C (primarily from the diet) were also associated with a significantly elevated risk. Supplemental vitamin C intake was only weakly associated with increased risk of kidney stones in this study. Despite conflicting results, it may be prudent for individuals predisposed to oxalate kidney stone formation to avoid high-dose vitamin C supplementation.

    Thursday, October 13, 2016

    B vitamins

    The B vitamins are a group of water-soluble vitamins that play important roles in cell metabolism. The B vitamins were once thought to be a single vitamin, referred to as vitamin B (much as people refer to vitamin C or vitamin D).

    List of B vitamins:
    • Vitamin B1 (thiamine)
    • Vitamin B2 (riboflavin)
    • Vitamin B3 (niacin or niacinamide)
    • Vitamin B5 (pantothenic acid)
    • Vitamin B6 (pyridoxine, pyridoxal, or pyridoxamine, or pyridoxine hydrochloride)
    • Vitamin B7 (biotin)
    • Vitamin B9 (folic acid)
    • Vitamin B12 (various cobalamins; commonly cyanocobalamin in vitamin supplements)

    The B vitamins are necessary in order to:
    • Support and increase the rate of metabolism
    • Maintain healthy skin and muscle tone
    • Enhance immune and nervous system function
    • Promote cell growth and division, including that of the red blood cells that help prevent anemia
    • Reduce the risk of pancreatic cancer - one of the most lethal forms of cancer - when consumed in food, but not when ingested in vitamin tablet form.

    All B vitamins are water-soluble, and are dispersed throughout the body. Most of the B vitamins must be replenished regularly, since any excess is excreted in the urine.

    Here is a friendly little guide to let you know what each B vitamin does for you and why they are essential to ensuring your health and energy level.

    Vitamin B-6:
    Involved in over 100 cellular reactions throughout the body, vitamin B-6 is instrumental in keeping various bodily functions operating at their best. B-6 is needed to metabolize amino acids and glycogen (the body’s storage form for glucose), and is also necessary for normal nervous system, hormone and red blood cell function. Vitamin B6 is fairly abundant in the diet and can be found in foods such as meat, poultry, eggs, bananas, fish, fortified cereal grains and cooked spinach.

    Vitamin B-12:
    Vitamin B12 plays a critical role the pathways of the body that produce energy. It is also needed to for the synthesis of DNA, for red blood cell formation and for healthy nervous system function. Vegetarians need to be especially alert in making sure they get enough B-12 because this vitamin is found mainly in animal products like chicken, beef, fish, milk and eggs.

    Biotin is commonly found in foods such as brewer’s yeast, strawberries, organ meat, cheese and soybeans. For those who are Biotin deficient, studies show that Biotin may help in the health of hair, skin & nails. Biotin also supports healthy carbohydrate, protein & fat metabolism.

    Also known as vitamin B-2, Riboflavin is a basic building block for normal growth and development. It is needed for healthy energy production and also supports the antioxidant activity throughout the body. Riboflavin is commonly found in a variety of foods such as fortified cereals, milk, eggs, cooked salmon, beef, spinach and broccoli.

    Folic Acid:
    Critical for the development of a healthy baby, folic acid should be taken before a woman becomes pregnant. This is necessary to ensure the proper formation and development of the fetal nervous system and spinal cord, which occurs in the initial weeks of pregnancy. While it is true that folic acid is very important for women of child-bearing age, all people should ensure adequate folic acid intake through the diet. Folic Acid is essential in the development of DNA and amino acid synthesis. Fortified foods such as breads and cereals are good dietary sources of folic acid. Other good sources are dark green leafy vegetables such as asparagus and spinach as well as brewer’s yeast, liver, fortified orange juice, beets, dates and avocados.

    Also known as vitamin B-1, Thiamin plays an important role in producing energy for the body’s cells. Thiamin is found in a wide variety of foods, although the best sources of Thiamin are lentils, whole grains and pork. Thiamin can also be found in red meats, yeast, nuts, sunflower seeds, peas, milk, cauliflower, spinach and legumes.

    Niacin is also known as vitamin B-3, and supports over 200 chemical reactions in the body, such as energy production. Niacin is commonly found in foods of animal origin as well as whole wheat bread, peanuts and lentils.

    Pantothenic Acid:
    Pantothenic Acid–also known as vitamin B-5—helps support fatty acid synthesis and energy production in the body. Pantothenic Acid is widely distributed in plant and animal food sources. Rich sources include organ meats (liver, kidney), egg yolk, whole grains, avocados, cashew nuts, peanuts, lentils, soybeans, brown rice, broccoli, and milk.

    One easy way to make sure that you get your daily dose of these important B vitamins is to take a B complex supplement.

    Here are the list of foods that are rich in vitamin B:
    • Potatoes
    • Avocados
    • whole grains
    • Tuna
    • Oats
    • Turkey
    • Bananas
    • Legumes
    • yeast, meat, low-fat dairy products
    • Brazil nuts
    • lentils and leafy greens.

    Sunday, October 2, 2016

    Saw Palmetto

    Saw palmetto is likely the most popular natural DHT blocker. A lot of evidence has been gathered showing its efficacy in preventing or slowing hair loss. 

    It is a potent herbal DHT inhibitor and considered the best natural DHT blocker by many. Saw palmetto is approved in Europe as a treatment for hair loss. It is also widely used to keep men’s prostates healthy, just like the medication Finasteride. Propecia is the name brand of Finasteride. Both saw palmetto and Propecia are known to be  5-alpha-reductase inhibitors. Saw palmetto is tolerated very well by the majority who take it. Mild side effects such as upset stomach are sometimes experienced by users.