Does Sugar Cause Wrinkles?

I visited family in California over a long weekend during spring break. My sister and I had our cameras with us everywhere we went. After I returned home, we both posted photos of our time together on Facebook. I was shocked at how wrinkly my face has become, especially around my eyes, and I have vowed to do something about it.

I am familiar with the fact that tanning causes wrinkles, yet I’m a big fan of laying out in the summer sunshine because I like the way I look with a tan. A few years ago I caught an Oprah broadcast that featured a dermatologist named Dr. Nicholas Perricone. He made a statement that blew me away: sugar in the diet enhances the appearance of wrinkles. Instead of using Botox or having a facelift, he said, the foods we eat can have a tremendous effect on the appearance of our skin. The proof was in the unlined face of a beautiful middle-aged woman who’d transformed her appearance by following Perricone’s dietary prescription of eliminating processed foods and increasing the consumption of fresh fruits, vegetables and whole grains. Now that I think of it, I’ve met people who follow a raw food diet and have been amazed by how smooth and translucent their skin appears, whether tanned or not.

Could one simple change really diminish the appearance of the laugh lines around my eyes? My diet has undergone a slow but steady overhaul during the past four years. Gone are the days when I subsisted mainly on so-called foods that came from a box, carton or can. I used to go days at a time without eating a single piece of fruit or a raw vegetable. Today I can’t go a day without consuming something that came directly out of the earth or off of a tree. But I admit, I still enjoy a sizable bowl of ice cream a couple times a week. And I consider baking cookies from scratch a form of therapy, although I now use whole wheat pastry flour instead of bleached all-purpose.

Judging by the ghastly photos on my Facebook page the time has come for me to take the next step and forsake sugar. For a few weeks. To see whether it will make a difference. I only have wrinkles to lose.

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4 thoughts on “Does Sugar Cause Wrinkles?

  1. As Jen’s blogging partner-in-crime…I’m betting that cutting out refined sugar will make a difference. But, I’m kinda hoping it doesn’t (do I really need yet another reason for cutting out refined sugar?). I think I’ll give Jen 3 weeks and see what happens…if she notices a difference, I guess I’ll be the next person to give it a try.

    btw: one of my posts will be about sunscreen. hint.hint.

  2. If you have ever seen before and after photos of William Dufty, author of Sugar Blues, it is quite telling!

  3. I am going to have to get a copy of the book. I definitely want to see the before and after pictures….and I could not find anything online (I suppose that is the case for older books, 1975 in this case…which is even more interesting…we are still exploring the same topic 35 years later!). Thanks Valerie for posting the comment. I look forward to checking it out!

  4. Since I wrote this post four years ago, I’ve become a mostly-plant eater. And I mostly have my sweet tooth under control, but once in a while it flares up and consumes whatever it wants. I’ve noticed that the day after I’ve had a generous bowl of ice cream with chocolate chips, almonds and a sprinkle of cinnamon, my skin is noticeably more wrinkled. I see it on my face as well as my arms and legs. After I’ve gone a few days without eating any refined sugar, the wrinkliness goes away. I believe that, yes, sugar does cause wrinkles.

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