The Benefits Of Micronutrients For Wound Healing And Healthy Skin
Healthy skin is the first barrier to prevent any wounds and it is the crucial component in would repair. The skin is the largest organ in the body and it is a mirror of the health of the body’s internal organs. In addition to protection of inner tissue structures, the skin helps in regulation of body temperature and elimination of metabolic waste products.
It is estimated that 6.5 million people in the US struggle with slow wound healing because of various reasons which include diabetes, obesity, and long-term disability such as stroke, spinal cord injury, and multiple sclerosis.
Collagen - a fibrous protein - is the main component of the skin. Reduction of collagen formation is one of the major causes of delayed wound healing. Impaired collagen formation can lead to overgrowth of scar tissue known as keloid formation. Some of the risk factors leading to suboptimal skin regeneration can be contributed to environmental pollution, ultraviolet radiation, and unhealthy lifestyle. Additionally, a dietary deficiency of micronutrients such as vitamin C, proline, lysine, vitamin E, selenium, zinc, and others, accelerate the process of skin aging and thinning, and delayed wound healing.
One of the critical micronutrients is vitamin C because it helps the body make collagen and is essential to wound healing and formation of new tissue in the skin, blood vessels, muscles, tendons and bones. Vitamin C supplements come in several forms - ascorbic acid, calcium ascorbate, magnesium ascorbate, and so on. However, the majority of vitamin C supplements on the market contain only a single form of vitamin C, usually ascorbic acid. Simple ascorbic acid is a water soluble compound, and it does not remain in the body for a long time and is easily excreted. Unless frequently replenished, it is difficult to obtain the benefits of vitamin C by only ascorbic acid. Mineral salts of ascorbic acid, such as calcium ascorbate and magnesium ascorbate are easily absorbed and metabolized well by the body’s cells. Such a combination with calcium and magnesium also neutralizes the acidic effect of ascorbic acid and contributes to a “buffering” effect and is gentler on the stomach lining.
Another unique form of vitamin C is ascorbyl palmitate, which is a fat-soluble form of vitamin C. It is better absorbed by the cells than ascorbic acid alone. Cell membranes enriched with ascorbyl palmitate are more resistant to oxidative damage, which means they are better protected against diseases and aging. Ascorbyl palmitate is also an effective free radical scavenger antioxidant. One of the advantages of taking a nutritional supplement that contains ascorbyl palmitate is that this form of vitamin C can reach areas of the body that simple vitamin C cannot and the effects last longer than simple ascorbic acid.
Vitamin C in combination with lysine and proline are essential for producing healthy collagen fibers, but vitamin C provides tensile strength to newly built collagen; otherwise, new tissue could not stretch without tearing. The skin loses elasticity as we age and this is a major factor in delayed wound healing in older people. Vitamin C is also required for proper immune system function, a consideration in patients with open wounds.
Healing of a chronic wound and regeneration of healthy skin is a multifaceted process. It is critical to support our body’s largest organ from the inside through synergistic combinations of micronutrients. Synergistic micronutrients not only support skin regeneration, they also help in improving the function of all organs in the body. However, most of the vitamin C supplements contain little or no ascorbyl palmitate. Optimum supplementation with a synergistically formulated vitamin C supplement can make all the difference in protecting your health!