(National) May 17, 2004 - They promise to "reduce lines and wrinkles" and basically fight the signs of aging all from the inside out. Anti-aging vitamins are all the rage, available in department stores, grocery stores and even online. Can vitamins really turn back time and make us look younger?
Four women, ranging from 30-to-50-something, were asked to take part in an unscientific test of two of the most popular products. The women were randomly given either Olay's Total Effects Beautiful Skin and Wellness or Murad's Youth Builder Supplement.
Dermatologist Diane Walder agreed to oversee the test. First, she examined the women, noting any signs of aging and even snapping "before" pictures for the record. The women were told not to alter any skincare, diet or exercise routine. Then they were off to take their vitamins every day for five weeks.
What does the American Academy of Dermatology think about these skin-saving supplements? Dr. Leslie Baumann, "All of the products that these people took do have different ingredients that will help hydrate the skin or will help increase blood flow to the skin."
Baumann says that will help you look more youthful, possibly even in days. There are also ingredients with long-term benefits, "Antioxidants can prevent aging. It's like sunscreen. You may start using sunscreen today and you're not going to see results in a week, but in ten years you will look younger."
She cautions that no supplements or any over-the-counter product can actually take away wrinkles that are already there.
What did our testers think? Mary was on Olay and she says even her friends noticed a difference. Olga didn't see any change, but at $14.99 a month she'll keep taking them.
Cathy wasn't impressed with Murad, but Bianca says they're worth the $45 a month, "I wouldn't say that I saw a difference, but at least two people said, 'Oh, you're glowing!'"
The results didn't surprise Dr. Walder, "Every product has a 30% placebo effect, so if you give it to three people, one's going to think they're dramatically improved."
Dr. Baumann believes that when it comes to combatting wrinkles, supplements are actually better than creams, because you don't have to worry about shelf life with supplements.
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