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Effects of Antioxidants on Aging Skin

Yolanda Helfrich, MD, Gary Fisher, PhD and John Voorhees, MD, F.R.C.P.

Patients often consult dermatologists with concerns about wrinkles and aging. Sun exposure and natural aging generate harmful compounds called reactive oxygen species, which damage components of cells and DNA, eventually leading to visible changes of aging like wrinkles. Antioxidants are compounds that protect cells from oxidative damage. We propose that oral dietary supplements which enhance endogenous antioxidant enzymes can prevent damage caused by reactive oxygen species, thereby limiting pathways that lead to skin aging.

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