Gaining a few stretch marks during pregnancy, or after a rapid muscle gain or weight loss is all part of the journey. Yet some people seem to get them and others do not, which basically boils down to genetics and whether or not you have elastic skin. There are, however, some useful (and quite effective) ways in which you can help reduce or even prevent stretch marks (especially if you know you are genetically predisposed to them), both during pregnancy or before you embark on a muscle bulk up, or rapid weight loss.
Gelatin - Though you may only know of gelatin as the stuff that turns liquid jelly into the firm and wobbly sweet dessert, it can be beneficial in preventing stretch marks. Gelatin is comprised of both collagen and water. Collagen is what the body uses to give your skin more elasticity. You can increase your own collagen levels by adding, or increasing it in your diet. A good way to do this is by making bone broth and using it when making soups, casseroles, gravy, and stews. Or you can even just drink the broth as it is.
Vitamin C - Vitamin C plays numerous roles in your health, including helping your body produce collagen and cartilage. So by making sure you have plenty of vitamin C in your diet, you can assist in your body’s natural collagen production. Vitamin C is naturally high in foods such as broccoli, citrus fruits, kale, and strawberries.
Zinc - This natural trace element also plays an important role in collagen production and being deficient in it can lead to a greater likelihood of developing stretch marks. Foods that are naturally high in zinc include pumpkin seeds, flax seeds, kidney beans, prawns, and beef.
Hydration - Drinking plenty of water during pregnancy is very important for numerous reasons, such as the increase in blood and the production of a water room for your baby to live in as it grows. Another important reason is to help keep your skin hydrated and prevent or reduce stretch marks.
- Moisturise - Keeping your skin hydrated by rubbing s and natural ointments, such as coconut oil or shea butter, will also help prevent the tearing and scarring that causes stretch marks.
At the end of the day, stretch marks are a mark of what we have accomplished. So whether it be the growth of a baby, of muscles or the dramatic loss of weight, they represent what you have achieved and for this reason, can never really be viewed with anything less than admiration.