The Skinny on Our Skin
You may be surprised to learn that the largest organ in our body is our skin. Weighing on average six pounds, our skin provides a myriad of critical functions and is involved in a wide variety of jobs that affect the entire body.
As our body's outer covering, the skin is protective, shielding us from cold, heat, sunlight, infections and injury. Yet, more than simply a protective covering, our skin acts as a barrier, protecting our internal organs from environmental toxins and invading organisms.
Our skin also regulates our body temperature as it orchestrates the process of perspiration, and is involved in the elimination of wastes from the body. On the other hand, our skin is also important for absorption, as it retains water and ushers essential nutrients and molecules back into the body.
Some medications and hormones are absorbed through the skin, then circulate throughout the body and our internal organs. Finally, skin plays a crucial role in absorbing UV light from the sun, and then converting sunlight into vitamin D, an essential element for good health.
Written by Carol Petersen, RPH, CNP - Women's International Pharmacy
Cellulite is defined as deposits of fat that create a dimpled, orange-peel appearance of the skin. According to Dr. Sharon McQuillan in a webinar prepared for the American Academy of Anti-Aging Medicine, losing weight does not reduce cellulite but changes in hormone balance, diet and lifestyle may help to do so.
Approximately 85% of women have some cellulite on their hips, thighs and buttocks. Men do not get cellulite. This gender difference is not simply due to hormones, but also is a result of differences in the structure of the skin and fat cells themselves. Fat cells under the skin are separated by a fibrous tissue called septa. In women, the fat cells and septa are lined up perpendicular to the skin surface. As fat accumulates and the septa become more rigid, the fat bulges around the septa and creates the rippling effect. In men, the septa are in a criss-cross pattern that prevents the bulging effect on the skin surface. Fat cells also tend to be larger in women, further contributing to the bumpy appearance of cellulite.
Online Health Library
We are proud to make available online, our popular "Connections" newsletters. These informational brochures cover a wide range of hormone related health topics including:
- Compounded Bioidentical Hormones
- Male Hormones
- Thyroid Imbalances
- Vitamin D
- Hair Loss
- Menstrual Bleeding
- No Bones about it
- Polycystic Ovary Syndrome
- And More!
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