Will Lifting Weights Help Protect Your Skin?

It’s no secret that exercise has a profound impact on our overall well-being, but when we think of its benefits, we often focus on cardiovascular health, muscle development, and mental

A new dimension has recently been added to the discussion, shedding light on a less explored aspect: how resistance training or lifting weights can rejuvenate aging skin.

This groundbreaking idea is explored in a study published in June 2023, which uncovers some intriguing possibilities.

Aerobic vs. Resistance Training: A Comparative Study

The new study, involving 61 healthy sedentary middle-aged Japanese women over a 16-week intervention, set out to compare the effects of aerobic and resistance training on skin aging.

With data from 56 women analyzed, the results pointed to new avenues of understanding.

Skin Elasticity and Structure

Both aerobic (AT) and resistance training (RT) interventions showed significant improvement in skin elasticity and upper dermal structure. However, the study unearthed a unique benefit of resistance training: an improvement in dermal thickness.

The Role of Resistance Training in Skin Rejuvenation

While both AT and RT made substantial strides in enhancing dermal extracellular matrices, the research exposed particular factors that seemed to be associated with resistance
training-induced skin rejuvenation.

The RT increased dermal biglycan (BGN), a protein thought to play a role in organizing collagen fibers in the skin.

The Difference in Effects: Cytokines, Hormones, and Metabolites

The study identified differences in the effects of AT and RT on circulating levels of factors like cytokines, hormones in serum, and metabolites. The particular influence of resistance training in these areas could pave the way for targeted treatments and specialized exercise regimes.

A New Frontier in Anti-Aging Strategies

The implications of this study reach far beyond just providing another reason to hit the gym. It opens doors to novel approaches in anti-aging skin care and broadens our understanding of how different types of exercise impact our body in distinct ways.

Could a well-structured resistance training program be integrated into beauty and skincare routines?

As the insights from this study become more widely understood and accepted, it may influence how dermatologists, fitness trainers, and even the cosmetic industry approach skin care and anti-aging.

Challenges and Future Directions

While the results of the study are promising, it’s worth considering the sample size and the demographic involved. Further research involving diverse age groups and ethnic backgrounds could enhance the universality of the findings.

The recent study on the effects of resistance training on skin aging has illuminated an exciting and unexpected connection between lifting weights and skin protection.

But the research has also demonstrated that there is no one-size-fits-all approach to exercise and health. It encourages us to think beyond the traditional boundaries of fitness and to embrace a more nuanced and personalized view of wellness. It’s a testament to the idea that our bodies are intricate systems, and understanding how to care for them requires continuous exploration, innovation, and an openness to new possibilities.