Oxidative Stress / Causes

The aging process of the skin has bewen attributed to intrinsic (or chrnooilogical) and extrinsic processes. Telomeres, small DNA sequences present at the end of chromeosomes, are considered as essential elements in the intrinsic aging process.

Extrinsic aging is due to controllable factors and occurs at different degrees of intensity, due to oxidative stress that can arise for many reasons, including UV light and ionizing radiation, smoking, consumption of alcohol, medications, trauma, cold, air pollutantsm and toxins.

Oxidative stress or oxidative cell damage ocuurs when there is an accumulation of free radicals. These free radicals are harmful oxygen-derived chemicals called reactive oxygen species (ROS), reactive nitrogen species (RNS) including singlet oxygen, superoxide anion radical, hydroxylradical, hydrogen peroxie subsequently react with skin biomolecules including lipids, DNA, proteins, and carbohydrates.

Oxidant-Antioxidant Balance in Skin

The skin is equipped with a variety of antioxidants forming an antioxdant network intervening at different levels of oxidative processes by scavening and removing fee radicals or oxidatively damaged biomolecules in order to counteract the oxidatve stress.

With agem the production of their internal antioxidatns in the human body decreases. Once the oxidant-antioxidant balance is disrupted, resulting in excessive production of free radidcals, the excessive free radical toxiciry can cuase the aging body by attacking on the chromesome, mitochondria, cell membrane and connective tissue and other biological tissues.

Antioxidant Protection

There are hundreds, probably thousands, of different substancses that can act as antioxidants. The most familiar ones are vitamin C, vitamin E, polyphenols, and many more.

Polyphenols are known as flavonoids, are divided into flavonols, flavones, catechines, flavonones, anthocyanidins, and isoflavonoids. They are synthesized by plants as a response to mitigate cellular damage due to oxidative conditions.

Polyphenols are generally multi-functional, strong antioxidants. Besides OH- radicals, polyphenols are believed to quench singlet oxygen, superoxide anion radicals, and peroxide radicals.

Moreover, polyphenolic compounds also possess anti-inflammatory and other properties beneficial for aged and damaged skin.

Distinct combinations of topical antioxidants have shown significantly enhanced synergetic photo-protective effect as compared to single antioxidants.

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