Beauty therapist Katrina Valente reveals her personal secret weapons when it comes to holistic anti-aging.
Atlhough I’ve studied and qualified in just about every beauty therapy you’d care to name, when it comes to anti-aging, I remain an advocate of holistic therapies. I’ve always led a pretty healthy lifestyle. I’ve never smoked, I don’t drink that much and have exercised regularly for the best part of 25 years. I’m no saint though, I eat healthily most of the time but sugar remains my main vice.
Both from my own experience of how best to hold back the signs of aging, as well as what I’ve seen from thousands of clients, I’ve come to various conclusions regarding the secrets of staying healthy and young in body, mind and spirit. Here are my top tips:
First and foremost in importance is what you’re feeding your body. I’m a great believer in detoxing and eating natural foods, raw where possible. I make a fresh juice every morning. Vegetable juices are better than fruit as the latter is high in sugar, natural sugars granted but it’s still sugar!
My favourite mix is carrot, cucumber, celery, beetroot, lemon, apple and ginger. A few hours later I have a protein shake made with vegan protein powder, coconut water, two tablespoons of coconut oil, Chai powder and nuts, all blended together.
Grass-fed organic beef is great for the female hormonal system and is high in iron and the good fatty acids that are essential for aging gracefully. Quality, organic beef is very different from a McDonald’s burger so go ahead and eat home-cooked organic beef once or twice per week.
Home-made soups are very high in nutritional value, easy to make and delicious at any time of the day. Stay away from starchy carbs in the evenings and fill up on vegetables; your energy will soar.
I’ve been exercising consistently for about 25 years now. I personally like a firm body so weight-training has always been important to me but my advice is that as we get older we need to change our routines. After two decades of hardcore weight training, I’ve recently been doing the Tracey Anderson workout and I love it! It’s an updated version of the old Callanetics that was all the rage in the 80s. Yoga and Pilates are a wonderful way to keep supple, lean and flexible as we get older. For downloadable workout videos, go to www.tracyandersonmethod.com or www.laurakateaustralia.com for a fusion of body resistance, yoga, fitball, balance and aerobic paced moves.
Water keeps our systems ticking over and prevents toxic build up. Our bodies are 85 per cent water so if we don’t have enough to keep our organs functioning properly, we experience constipation, bloating and Irritable Bowel Syndrome, to name a few.
For good quality water, I recommend Jebel Akhdar Natural Mineral Water from the mountains of Oman or Fiji Water. Both are high vibration.
Shop online at www.organicfoodsandcafe.com
This is another biggie for anti-aging. Prevention is better than cure so the earlier you start taking care of your skin, the better. Professional products are the best as they contain more active ingredients that work on the deeper layers of the dermis where
all the collagen and elastin is formed. An interesting fact is that whatever you buy over the counter at your chemist or supermarket only has a two layer penetration, this is a government requirement for consumer use but you’re basically wasting your money. To get a deeper penetration of four to five layers, you need a professional product.
This addresses the aging process much more specifically for longer results.
A good organic day and night cream plus serums, which penetrate easily and are more specific to skin types, are essential for helping slow down the aging process and let’s not forget a good eye cream. The skin around the eyes is much thinner than the rest of the face so it needs to be treated with different creams. In my opinion, professional skincare is a must to fend off wrinkles, pigmentation and sagging skin tone.
I think the best brand that’s available in Dubai is Solgar. Supplements specifically for anti-aging are Vitamin C Ester, Omega 3, Vitamin E with Selenium, Zinc, B Complex and Sun Chlorella. They’ll all help to balance the hormonal system.
I’ve been doing regular detoxes for many years and I think they’re a must for keeping your system in tip-top health. I just did a five day juice fast with a company called Essentially – the juices are delivered to you each day and you drink a total of six juices a day – one every two hours. Easy! The owner of Essentially has been my client for many years and I know she puts her heart and soul into this business.
For detox expertise in the UAE, go to www.essentially.ae, www.artofdetox.com or www.healthybliss.com.
Professional treatments are the icing on the cake of anti-aging. My favourite natural treatment is Intraceuticals Oxygen which super hydrates the skin, leaving it lifted and shining. Not all oxygen facials are created equal however. The Intraceuticals oxygen facial is in a league of its own and uses serums and products that keep the skin looking amazing for weeks after the treatment. I seriously love this facial! Of course I would, it’s one that I offer my clients. Go to www.katrinavalente.com for more information.
For a strong tightening treatment, I recommend the Radio Frequency facial, after five weekly treatments you’ll see some great results that last for about three months after the treatments. A good alternative for those not wanting to have laser treatment. Go to www.medspa.ae.
Even if its only five minutes a day. When we live in awareness, it helps us take responsibility for our lives. Listening to the quiet voice within brings peace and acceptance of the here and now; taking each moment for what it is. Living in acceptance gives us freedom to realise our dreams.
Here are the culprits who will, without any shadow of doubt, speed up your aging process…
Alcohol, sun and smoking
You’ve heard it all before so just to further ingrain it on your brain. Alcohol, sun and smoking are the three stooges that will cause the most damage for your skin and liver – all of which makes you older, faster. Alcohol causes significant dehydration so if you must have a tipple, at least alternate it with water. As for smoking, I’ve never understood the attraction of swallowing mouthfuls of toxin-filled smoke. It makes your skin grey and wrinkled, it clogs your pores, makes your hair and clothes smell, gives you bad breath… and lets not forget things like lung cancer, emphysema and other respiratory diseases plus the environmental impact of all those butts ending up in our waterways and oceans. Obviously, cigarettes are hard to kick otherwise no-one would smoke but make the effort to ditch these poisonous sticks.
The sun is the biggest factor in premature aging. Too much of it causes skin cancer, moles, dehydration, burns, and aging. My 80-year-old Scottish mother has never laid in the sun and as a result has the most baby soft skin. Pure white with not a mark on it. Although, everything in moderation, we do need Vitamin D from the sun – something that most of us here in Dubai are deficient in. Spend 20 minutes per day outside to get your Vitamin D quota.
Bad food ages you, be it fried food, processed food, packet or powdered food, anything full of sugar, preservatives, artificial hormones, colourings and chemicals. You know this. I don’t need to tell you. These foods clog you up and put pressure on your digestive system as well as fill your body with the articifical hormones that end up in our beef, chicken and fish. Go organic.
Lack of sleep
Late nights and less than seven hours sleep a night is another way to flick your ‘get old faster’ switch. The hours before midnight are the most essential for energy and vitality so get to bed at 10pm.
Caffeine in soft drinks or coffee takes 24 hours to get through the liver. It’s addictive and also very dehydrating. Coffee is a big part of Arab culture and genetically the Arab body can tolerate coffee better than a Caucasian person. Again though, a little of what you fancy does you good. If you enjoy coffee, drink it in moderation and make sure it’s as high quality and organic as possible.
KATRINA VALENTE is a holistic beautician specialising in anti-aging. Call her on 050 565 7679 or email her at Katrina@katrinavalente.com and mention Awakenings magazine for a 20 per cent discount for new customers on any treatment.