In previous posts we touched on the ways that eating right, exercising, and sleeping can help you prevent wrinkles. But eating right is more than simply “helpful,” since sugar can actively cause a person to get wrinkles.

Jody Anderson of Succeed Health LLC recently ran a guest report in a Wisconsin newspaper that explains this phenomenon.

“According to dermatology research, deep lines and sagging skin can be the result of a process called glycation. This process occurs when sugar molecules in your bloodstream attach to proteins and collagen fibers to form advanced glycation end products, or AGEs. As more AGEs develop, skin becomes less elastic and more vulnerable to wrinkles, lines, and sagging. These results are not so sweet.

The build-up of AGEs can result in other damaging effects to the body such as heart disease, cancer diabetes and Alzheimer’s disease.”

Of course, avoiding refined sugars, artificial sweeteners, and high-fructose corn syrup is sometimes easier said than done. HFCs are in over 80% of the foods that we eat! You’ll have to be very vigilant about reading labels if you want to avoid AGEs—or you’ll need to commit to eating locally grown whole foods that don’t come in packages.

What if you have sugar cravings? Such sensations can be unpleasant and difficult to deal with.

You might want to start by throwing out any “bad foods” that are currently in your cupboards and fridge. Then, start thinking about using healthy substitutes.

For example, a frozen banana or a healthy strawberry smoothie could give you the hint of sweetness that you crave without opening you up to side effects like wrinkles. Eating lots of berries and other anti-oxidant foods can also help you mitigate any problems you might cause by making the occasional slip in your eating habits.

The evidence is quite clear. A youthful face requires a healthy body!