The skin, a vital asset

With an average surface of 1.80 m² and weight of 4.5 kg, the skin is one of our body’s largest organs. It provides a physical barrier that protects us from damage and irritation whilst playing many roles, particularly in waste removal, water retention and body temperature regulation. It also allows for sensitivity to pressure, heat and pain.

The skin is comprised of three layers from the surface in towards the body : idermis, dermis and hypodermis or subcutaneous tissue.

The epidermis is the outer layer. It comprises closely packed cells and therefore forms a protective barrier.

Next is the dermis, the thickest part of the skin. Here lie the blood vessels that nourish the skin, the nerves that provide sensitivity and the collagen and elastin fibres offering flexibility. Here we find the hair follicles, sebaceous glands (they secrete the sebum that lubricates the surface skin), sweat glands and a network of small blood vessels and fibres.

Even deeper is the hypodermis or subcutaneous tissue, a fatty layer that protects the body from external damage and pressure.

The balance of the skin is reliant on protection from external damage and on nutritional intakes adapted to the functions of the different layers. Hence the importance to eat a varied diet rich in vitamins, minerals and polyunsaturated fatty acids….