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Hyaluronic Acid – Your Skin’s Hydration Station 

Hyaluronic acid (HA), also known as hyaluronan, is the hero hydrator everyone is reaching for. Its main claim to fame? Holding up to 1000x its weight in water. Good news for your skin, as it can soak up moisture and hydrate. That’s right, it draws and retains water like there’s no tomorrow. Hydrated skin cells are typically fuller and thus reflect light better, giving that plump, healthy, quenched glow.

What started as a popular skincare serum is now an edible beauty must-have.

What is Hyaluronic Acid?

Hyaluronic acid, found naturally within your body, are long chains of sugar molecules called glycosaminoglycans (GAGs). As its acronym doesn’t suggest, it’s a humectant, meaning it has a natural ability to draw and hold water molecules – up to 1000 times its weight. It’s naturally abundant throughout our body and functions to keep our cells hydrated and structurally sound. Like magnets, HA holds collagen and elastin fibres in a proper, stable configuration. We can also thank hyaluronic acid for smooth, pain-free movements as it helps to cushion and lubricate our joints.

Like collagen, HA levels decline with age. Levels of HA within our skin decrease from 0.3% between ages 19-47, down to 0.015% for women in their 60’s, to 0.007% in women aged 70 years and older. This likely contributes to the disarrayed network of collagen and elastin fibres – characteristic of aged skin. Visually this contributes to dehydrated, lack-lustre, and wrinkled skin (sigh).

hyaluronic acid benefits - girl with wet, hydrated skin

Skin Benefits of Hyaluronic Acid in Ingestible Beauty

From serums to dermal fillers, topical and injectable applications of hyaluronic acid are common and well understood.

What about oral hyaluronic acid supplements?
Topical hyaluronic acid serums are excellent, but their limitations lie in only hydrating the outer layers of skin.
Oral hyaluronic acid offers hydration to the inner layers, which topical serums can’t penetrate. Inside-out beauty, literally.

As well as hydrating tissues, it’s shown to have anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, wound healing, and even anti-cancer functions. Its hydration and antioxidant effects can help promote skin cell renewal and turnover, revealing fresh, bright skin underneath. Several studies indicate oral hyaluronic acid can decrease wrinkle depth, increase elasticity and decrease skin roughness – all bases covered!

Pro Tip: Struggling with dehydrated skin? Maybe it needs a drink, literally. Don’t forget one of the most important (and cheap) skin saviours – water. Drinking plenty of water throughout the day keeps your cells plump and hydrated and your lymphatic system pumping effectively to clear toxins. 

Is hyaluronic acid the right ingredient for you?

Hyaluronic acid is considered a safe, gentle ingredient – despite the harsh sound of its name (normally, acid = alarm bells). It’s one of the universal ingredients that fits every skin type, from dry and sensitive to oily and acne-prone. Both oral and topical applications of hyaluronic acid are considered safe; they have a good safety profile and a low chance of side effects or toxicity.

Studies have indicated that hyaluronic acid may relieve osteoarthritis pain, joint inflammation and improve muscular knee strength outside of strictly skin benefits. Oral supplements of hyaluronic acid suggested similar, if not better, results in relieving joint pain compared to the current standard treatment – injecting the joint with hyaluronic acid. Other studies have also suggested the benefits of inhibiting bone resorption and cartilage degradation in athletes. We won’t say no to that!

How Do Oral Hyaluronic Acid Supplements Work?

Despite its large molecular size, your body can absorb ingested hyaluronic acid. Once swallowed, it is absorbed by the small intestine and transported around the body through the blood and lymphatic circulation. From here, it travels across the body to areas including skin and connective tissue. Here it replenishes existing stores and stimulates fibroblasts to produce more hyaluronic acid and collagen.

Optimal Daily Dosage for Hyaluronic Acid

Currently, there is no defined optimal daily dose for hyaluronic acid. As hyaluronic acid exists in different molecular weights, two hyaluronic acid supplements may have different absorption abilities. This makes pinpointing a singular number tricky at best. Because studies indicate doses upwards of 50mg/day can provide benefits, we recommend this as the minimum to look for.

 

 

This is just a taste of what our 28 page Skin Supplementing Guide has to offer 

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References:

Bukhari, S., Roswandi, N. L., Waqas, M., Habib, H., Hussain, F., Khan, S., Sohail, M., Ramli, N. A., Thu, H. E., & Hussain, Z. (2018). Hyaluronic acid, a promising skin rejuvenating biomedicine: A review of recent updates and pre-clinical and clinical investigations on cosmetic and nutricosmetic effects. International journal of biological macromolecules, 120(Pt B), 1682–1695. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijbiomac.2018.09.188

Oe, M., Sakai, S., Yoshida, H., Okado, N., Kaneda, H., Masuda, Y., & Urushibata, O. (2017). Oral hyaluronan relieves wrinkles: a double-blinded, placebo-controlled study over a 12-week period. Clinical, cosmetic and investigational dermatology, 10, 267–273. https://doi.org/10.2147/CCID.S141845

Göllner, I., Voss, W., von Hehn, U., & Kammerer, S. (2017). Ingestion of an Oral Hyaluronan Solution Improves Skin Hydration, Wrinkle Reduction, Elasticity, and Skin Roughness: Results of a Clinical Study. Journal of evidence-based complementary & alternative medicine, 22(4), 816–823. https://doi.org/10.1177/2156587217743640

Wang, Shyu-Jye MDa,b,∗; Wang, Ya-Hui MDc; Huang, Liang-Chen MDd The effect of oral low molecular weight liquid hyaluronic acid combination with glucosamine and chondroitin on knee osteoarthritis patients with mild knee pain, Medicine: February 05, 2021 – Volume 100 – Issue 5 – p e24252 doi: 10.1097/MD.0000000000024252

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