DARK CIRCLES UNDER EYES
& EYE BAGS (PUFFY EYES)
Written by Slawomir (“Swavak”) Gromadzki, MPH
The following factors may contribute to the development of dark skin (circles) under eyes and eye bags:
Fatigue and chronic lack of rest and sleep, age, damaged capillaries (smallest blood vessels around the eyes), periorbital hyperpigmentation (increased melanin production beneath the eyes making the skin to appear darker), seasonal allergies, eczema, frequent use of stimulants such as caffeine, smoking, drugs and alcohol, poor skin elasticity and health, lack of antioxidants, diet high in sugar and other refined products, age, thinner skin beneath the eyes, etc.
Dark circles are often caused by capillaries (smallest blood vessels) seen through the thin skin beneath the eyes. When we are stressed and tired, the adrenals release the stress hormone cortisol which enlarges all blood vessels including the ones underneath the eyes. Those dilated blood vessels accommodate increased volume of blood which results in the formation of dark circles, especially when blood circulation is sluggish.
With regards to eye bags, the following potential reasons can make eyes look puffy:
Hormonal imbalance, slack (loose) skin, collagen loss, muscle atrophy, fat deposits beneath the skin, poor blood circulation, water retention, vitamin C deficiency, diet high in refined sugar and refined salt, alcohol, skin sensitivity and allergies, chronic fatigue and lack of sleep, poor dietary habits, deficiency of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants, sedentary lifestyle, chronic stress, accumulation of toxins in the body, etc.
– Due to its content of vitamin K, palmitic acid, and retinol sweet almond oil helps remove dark circles under eyes. Vitamin K improves blood circulation and reduces blood clotting, thus helping eliminate skin discolouration around the eyes. Palmitic acid and retinol are natural moisturisers that help soften the skin and make it smoother. Just apply a few warm drops beneath your eyes before bed, massage it gently in a circular motion, and expect great results in the morning. To increase the effectiveness you can combine sweet almond oil with few drops of sandalwood, myrrh, frankincense, chamomile, rosehip, or lavender essential oil that are known to reduce dark circles under eyes.
– Raw organic coconut oil is packed with antioxidants and nutrients that help to nourish skin and reduce discolouration, puffiness and dark skin under eyes. Apply raw organic coconut oil around the eyes and let it stay on the skin for several hours or overnight before rinsing off. For better results mix coconut oil with one drop of any mentioned above essential oils.
– Powerful detoxifying effect of chlorella can help eliminate dark circles. It can also improve dryness of the skin around the eyes.
– Epidermal growth factor (EGF) has shown the ability to effectively minimize the under-eye bags. According to the conclusions of a 2015 study, “Our results offer evidence that topical EGF can reduce the appearance of under-eye bags.” Unfortunately, there are some reasons to believe that regular usage of EGF may not be safe and may increase risk of a cancer >.
– Take a chamomile capsule or drink chamomile tea every day approximately an hour before going to bed as it promotes deeper sleep and will help relieve stress, thus reducing dark circles.
– Dark circles are often caused by capillaries (smallest blood vessels) seen through the thin skin beneath the eyes and taking 2 tablespoons of organic chlorella powder or drinking green juices with 1 tablespoon of organic chlorella powder or organic barley grass powder every day 30 minutes before breakfast will eliminate this problem.
– Avocado contains beneficial compounds that are known to reduce puffiness and lighten the skin under the eyes. Mix one tablespoon of avocado with one teaspoon of chlorella powder, barley grass powder, raw coconut oil or sweet almond oil and apply the paste directly under the eyes, leaving it on for at least 30 minutes or as long as possible (the longer the better).
– According to Dr. Josh Axe, “Liquorice and avocado oil can increase elastin and collagen, which makes it very effective for under-eye bags. Simmer four teaspoons of liquorice powder (or 10–20 liquorice tea bags) in 200 ml of avocado oil, let it cool, strain, and pat on the affected area. It’s great for your face, hair, and whole body.”
– Address allergies.
– Avoid refined salt and use only Celtic, pink or sea salt.
– Exercise every day as it promotes a youthful glow to the skin
– Apply clay mask every day for at least one week.
– Sleep 7-8 hours every day. In case you have sleep problems, drink strong chamomile tea and take 400mg of magnesium citrate 30-60 min before bed to improve sleep experience.
– Try to avoid makeups or make sure they are free from harmful chemical, and always remove makeup before going to bed.
– Avoid stimulants such as alcohol, caffeine (in coffee, chocolate, green tea, cola drinks, etc.), theophylline (in tea) or and theobromine (in cacao and chocolate) as they dehydrate body and skin and may cause the delicate area around your eyes to look darker and sunken. Although they appear to give you a short time energy boost yet it is only a borrowed energy, which means sooner or later you will have to pay for it with the loss of energy. As soon as you feel exhausted you will will be forced to use stimulants again and again, thus causing a vicious circle and addiction. Apart from that stimulants also weaken your immune system and lead to nutritional deficiencies contributing to dark skin under eyes and puffiness.
– Apply alternative hot (1 minute) and very cold or icy (1 minute) compress to improve blood circulation and elimination of toxins.
– Take 500-1000mg of vitamin C after two times a day after meals to increase collagen production and give skin more strength and elasticity. Increasing collagen levels can help skin look firmer and increase smoothness. Pure vitamin C powder combined with glycerine can be also used externally for much better and quick results and it is brilliant for both fading the area under the eyes as well as baggy eyes.
– According to Roxy Dillon, “Vitamin C and glycerine serum are very effective for evening out complexion and fading skin discolouration. Dissolve two teaspoons of pure vitamin C (ascorbic acid) powder in 100 ml of vegetable glycerine. You can do this by adding the vitamin C powder directly to a small bottle of glycerine. Shake well. Add a little water if you can see crystals of vitamin C. Use this lotion at night, on makeup-free skin. Apply all over your face, neck, hands, and any other problem area, leave on for five minutes, and then rinse off and pat your skin dry. Follow this with the amla, gotu kola, and coconut treatment. Onion lotion, prepared by blending half an onion in half a pint of water and straining the liquid, is fantastic for clarifying the skin, fading any dark spots, and making the skin youthful and radiant. Leave the lotion on for five minutes before rinsing off. The onion scent should evaporate, but if not, apply apple cider vinegar to reinforce the effects of the onion and remove the aroma. You can use the apple cider vinegar on its own, too, omitting the onion lotion. A thin layer of tomato paste is also effective. Rinse off after five minutes. A liquorice and avocado oil preparation also fades skin and evens the complexion.” (source >)
– Avoid foods containing refined sugar as it spoils your appetite, weakens your immune system and leads to vitamin and mineral deficiencies. Don’t consume sweetened beverages and foods which are high in empty calories, refined sugar, white flour, and fat. Never use artificial sweeteners nor high glucose / high fructose syrup as they are more harmful than even refined sugar.
– Never use any animal fat and avoid also free plant fats such as refined oils or margarines. Instead use only moderate amounts of cold pressed coconut oil or flax seed oil.
– Avoid cooking and frying with any oil but if you have to use only coconut oil. Bake your food without any fat and then add some raw organic coconut oil or cold pressed flax oil if you wish.
– Drink 3 times a day about 3 glasses of water (distilled or at least filtered) about 30 to 60 minutes before each meal or about 2 hours after. During hot days you need even more. Your urine should be transparent, if it is yellow it means you don’t drink enough water.
– Mix equal amounts of organic chlorella powder and organic barley grass powder. Consume 1 to 2 tablespoons of the mixture with worm water or a juice about 30 minutes before breakfast. Instead of powder you can have 20 tablets (500mg each) of chlorella or spirulina every day about 30 minutes before breakfast as they are excellent sources of chlorophyll, iron, iodine, EPA and DHA omega-3 fatty acids, vitamins, minerals, phytochemicals, and trace elements that are often missing in commercially grown foods. Chlorella, spirulina, wheat grass, and barley grass powder, like cold pressed vegetable juices and raw vegetables, should be the most important and always present ingredients of your diet!
– In order to make sure your intake of omega-3 is sufficient, every day consume chlorella tablets, or either one or two tablespoons of soaked chia seeds or ground flax seeds with your meal.
– Take magnesium of high bioavailability such as magnesium citrate (preferably in powder form as it is free from binders and fillers): 200-400mg about 30 min before breakfast and the same amount about 1 hour before bed. Due to soil depletion and refined diet millions suffer from magnesium deficiency without even knowing it. Magnesium deficiency is often misdiagnosed because it does not show up in blood tests as only 1% of the body’s magnesium is stored in the blood.
– Take a good quality multivitamin-mineral formula such as Healthy Mega (HealthAid) – 1 tablet after breakfast or at least B complex (50 to 100mg each): 1 tab or caps after breakfast. Never buy cheap vitamins or popular multivitamin supplements such as Centrum as they are very low in vitamins and minerals and contain only poor quality ingredients. Always compare the ingredients and strength.
– Take about 30-50mg of zinc after breakfast (or 15-30mg if you take multivitamin-mineral formula with zinc).
– If the puffiness is caused or contributed by water retention take dandelion capsules or drink tea 3 times a day between meals.
– If possible try to include some of the most effective natural remedies, herbs, and supplements such as: Alpha-lipoic acid, NAC, Bee pollen, Holy Basil, Alfalfa, Moringa, Charcoal, Green clay, Evening primrose oil, MSM (sulphur), Zinc, Aloe vera, etc. All of them are very beneficial to the skin problems and
– As soon as you wake up in the morning, drink 2-3 glasses of water and exercise for at least 30-60 minutes. Brisk walking outside is the best exercise. In order to enable this diet to be more effectively used by your body you need to exercise on a regular basis. If you suffer from different heart conditions you even shouldn’t start with energetic exercise routine. In this case you need to change the diet first, keep in touch with your physician, continue taking your prescribed medication, and after some time start from short distance and slow walking routine, gradually and carefully increasing the pace and distance every day. Fast walking outside is the best type of exercise. If the weather is bad exercise at home. You can use exercise bike, mate, treadmill, Xbox Kinect games, etc. But please remember that aerobic exercises (outside in the open air) are the best. You need a minimum of 30 to 60 minutes of physical activity four to five times a week.
– You can eat as much fresh and raw vegetables as you want (especially carrots, green leafy vegetables, and cabbage family), but if you prefer to cook them do it moderately or steam your vegetables. You will achieve much better results if your diet consists of at least 50% or even better up to 85% of raw (uncooked) and unprocessed plant foods (especially raw vegetables and raw vegetable juices).
– Drink 2 times a day 2 glasses of cold-pressed vegetable juice (mostly carrots and green leafy vegetables) about 30 minutes before each meal, then start you meal with most healthy and nutritious foods.
– Take 1 teaspoon of fresh raw organic ground turmeric two or three times a day with meals. If you don’t like the taste take organic turmeric capsules at least 3 times one capsule with meals.
– Avoid drinking fruit juices because they have high glycaemic index due to the fact that they are deprived of fibre and are high in sugar. Drinking fruit juices between meals will also cause stomach to release some digestive enzymes thus reducing their amounts during meals and impairing digestion.
– Each day have about a handful of one type of raw unsalted and unroasted soaked overnight nuts or seeds (almonds, pumpkin seeds, walnuts, ground sesame seeds, etc.), changing them every day.
– In case you lack strong will power, which is required to improve lifestyle, avoid junk food and stimulants, try regular meditation as a way of spiritual and moral empowerment. If you believe in existence of God don’t forget about daily fervent prayers and reading or listening to a good spiritual literature (such as the Bible, Desire of Ages > and “Ministry of Healing” > by Ellen G White available online free of charge) which presents God as loving, healing, forgiving, carrying and saving from eternal death Person. All this will greatly increase the effectiveness of your improved diet and lifestyle: “Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus” (1Thessalonians 5:16-18, NIV); “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:6-7, NIV). Because from my own experience I know and remember how difficult it was, in my case, to change my eating habits and give up on junk food and stimulants using my own pathetic at that time will power, I recommend to you reading or listening to a book “Steps to Christ” > and Great Controversy > by Ellen White. If you carefully study all the information presented there and follow the steps, you will not only become victorious but will actually experience an inward transformation which will enable you to enjoy your new lifestyle (including diet and physical activity).
© 2016 Slawomir Gromadzki – All Rights Reserved
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