According to the British Nutrition Foundation, the beauty supplement industry has not done enough to prove product claims
Beauty supplements claiming to help consumers achieve ‘youthful’, ‘firm’ or ‘glowing’ skin are not backed by enough scientific evidence, a new study warns.
Scientists from the British Nutrition Foundation (BNF) argue there is only a small amount of evidence to suggest that supplements containing ingredients such as green tea extract, pomegranate extract, carotenoids, evening primrose oil, borage oil, fish oil, collagen and co-enzyme Q10, provide any real anti-ageing benefits to the skin.
The food industry-backed organisation found that the ingredients can have antioxidant, anti-inflammatory or collagen enhancing effects, as part of a healthy diet, but there was only limited evidence that they had any benefit in supplement form.
Instead the BNF is urging consumers to focus on a nutritious diet, not smoke and not drink alcohol in excess, as well as use topical sunscreen, in order to prevent the skin ageing.
However, the BNF acknowledged that some ingredients, such as vitamins A, C, B2, B3, B7, and iodine and zinc, are proven to contribute to the maintenance of normal skin and that a deficiency in these essential micronutrients can result in skin abnormalities.
The global beauty supplements market is expected to reach US$7.1bn by 2023.
Ayela Spiro, Nutrition Science Manager at the BNF, said: “As consumers can spend hundreds of pounds a year on oral beauty supplements, we felt it was important to investigate the association between the ingredients in these products, and the signs that we associate with skin ageing, such as wrinkles, loss of elasticity and moisture.
“While there is a body of research on the science of skin ageing, evidence for the benefit of nutraceuticals to skin appearance is currently not strong enough to draw firm conclusions.”