Older generations pass on to us the wisdom they have learned throughout the years of their life. Since summer has started, I wanted to share some advice my grandma shared with me when I was young. How to keep youth and beauty:
Avoid The Sun
A suntan does not prevent skin damage— it is skin damage.
One of the most important tips that many Chinese women follow is avoiding the sun. This helps keep our skin from developing wrinkles and staying pale. Carrying around umbrellas, hats and wearing very thin jackets to make sure we aren’t exposed to the sun’s rays as much as possible. It’s well known that the sun’s rays (UVA and UVB) damage the skin and can cause wrinkles.
Keep It Natural With Herbal Medicines & Teas
Herbal medicine is a huge part of our lifestyle to stay healthy and increase immunity; likewise, tea is also a major aspect of our routines. In Hong Kong there are Herbal Medicine Tea shops, the teas are prepared in fountain dispensaries but since living in the states grandma would prepare the teas. Prunella Herbal tea has been well known as the heal all tea, it clears the liver heat, clears the acne. Even when summer is hot, teas are also served including the beneficial green tea which has antioxidant properties and stimulates one’s metabolism.
Eat More Fruits & Vegetables (& Less Meat)
Diet consisting of mostly fresh fruits and vegetables is a huge part of a Chinese woman’s life. The preparation of fresh vegetables are cooked with little to no oil or fats, and fruits that are in season as desserts. Grandma preferred to serve minimal amounts of spicy foods, as she says that the heat can cause pimples, and sugary foods to avoid gaining weight. Heat foods are chips and dried crackers, roasted nuts and seeds, once you start eating them, it is hard to stop.
The choice to eat less meat is more complex than simply keeping a figure. Meat is expensive in China, so many view it as a luxury than an everyday food.
Exercise Is Gentle, But Important
This may be an obvious healthy beauty tip, but for Chinese women, it is very important to keep active. Walking after meals to help digestion and stay fit or get massages.
Enjoy Spas and Massages
Everyone seems to get massages in China. People go together with friends, or even alone. Getting massages is not seen as a luxury, but as a way to stay healthy and young. Chinese believe that routine massages will ensure proper blood flow and keep them sturdy and fit. Every week I have a deep tissue massage and cupping session, it helps me flush out toxins from my body, so that my skin is clean and hydrated. Enjoying a massage, spa, or having your spouse (exchange program) can also lower one’s stress level, which can be a reason people may have bad health or troubled skin.
Many of the techniques my grandma taught me to avoid the sun was also being taught to my children. Chinese begin to protect their children while they are young. This ensures that they will grow with healthy, undamaged skin instead of trying to fix it when they are older. It never hurts to think about how a child might benefit from these teachings.
Although my grandma is no longer with me, I still treasure all the great memories with all the care and love she has given me. The love is so deep that it makes me strong, and the need to pass on all that she has taught me to you.