As if better balance, improved heart health, and sounder sleep weren’t enough to get you into strength training, here’s one more reason that might do the trick:
Weightlifting is good for your skin.
That’s the finding of a study published in Scientific Reports, which found that both aerobic exercise and weight training altered gene expression and improved the underlying health of facial skin cells and tissue.
Participants in the study saw their skin grow “more youthful at a cellular level” after they began exercising, one of the researchers said – and the biggest boost came from weightlifting.
Researchers examined 56 middle-aged Japanese women who were sedentary, then got them exercising – some in cardio, some in weightlifting. Both kinds of exercise improved their skin on some levels.
“But only resistance training bumped up the thickness of the dermal layer, apparently by increasing the activity of several specialized genes that pump out proteins designed to build and strengthen connective tissue,” The Washington Post reported.
The study was imperfect and not completely conclusive, researchers said. And it’s still necessary to wear sunscreen and cover the skin with clothing when you’re exercising outside.
But the study suggests it’s possible that exercise – and strength training in particular – can make your skin look better.
Like we said – it’s one more good reason to start!
Holly Kouvo is a personal trainer, functional aging specialist, senior fitness specialist, brain health trainer, writer, and speaker.