Eat Your Way to Gorgeous, Healthy Skin
When we think of skincare and a beauty regime, most of us focus on topical skincare - all the lotions, potions, creams, and serums that we layer onto our skin. While using good quality products that are right for your skin type is essential to having healthy skin, a big part of achieving flawless skin can be found in the kitchen.
There is a direct link between your diet and your skin's condition. You're more likely to have youthful, healthy glowing skin with minimal breakouts if you eat a healthy, balanced diet than if your diet consists mainly of processed and fast foods with little nutritional value and large amounts of sugar and saturated fats.
If you have skin conditions like acne, eczema, or psoriasis, eating certain foods may cause these issues to flare up. While eating a healthy diet won't eliminate these conditions, and you will need to consult a doctor to take the correct medication, eating wholesome foods will help you reduce their effects and manage your condition. For example, if you have psoriasis, you should avoid foods like gluten and dairy because these are known to exacerbate the situation. In contrast, foods that fight inflammation like salmon and leafy greens will do your skin good.
Include these Foods in Your Diet for Clear Skin
Eating the right foods will nourish your skin from the inside, so make sure to add these to your shopping list:
Fruits and Vegetables
You've probably heard it time and again - eat the rainbow, meaning eat fruits and vegetables in different colors as each color contains various nutrients that you need to maintain the health of your skin. Aim to eat five servings or more of fruit and veggies a day and include a mix of the following:
Tomatoes, red chili peppers, red bell peppers, beets, radish, cherries, watermelon, strawberries, pomegranate, grapes, red apples
Yellow squash, ginger, corn, lemons, yellow bell peppers, bananas, pineapples, passion fruit, melon, apricots
Sweet potatoes, carrots, pumpkin, butternut squash, oranges, cantaloupe, mangoes, papaya, peaches
Eggplant, purple cabbage, figs, grapes, blueberries, plums
Broccoli, asparagus, peas, celery, kale, spinach, limes, kiwi, avocado
Onions, cauliflower, potatoes, mushrooms, pears, coconut
This list is by no means exhaustive and simply gives you an idea of what types of fruits and vegetables to include in your diet. It's not possible to eat every type every day but try to have at least one of each color a day since each contains different nutrients.
Oranges and other citrus fruits, for example, are high in vitamin C. It helps reduce signs of aging as it plays a role in the skin's collagen development. It also helps to repair damaged skin and reduces fine lines and wrinkles.
Tomatoes contain an antioxidant called lycopene and can help to keep your skin smooth. Lycopene also protects your skin from sun damage, like dark spots, age spots, and wrinkles. You would still need to wear a strong SPF when in the sun, but eating tomatoes can reduce the effects of sun exposure.
Fatty fish contain omega-3, vitamin E, and zinc. Omega-3 keeps your skin moisturized and supple, and a side effect of an omega-3 deficiency is dry skin. Vitamin E is a potent antioxidant that will protect your skin from free radicals and prevents inflammation, while zinc helps the skin to generate new cells.
Salmon, sardines, tuna, and mackerel are all great examples of fatty fish. If you're on a plant-based diet, eat chia seeds, flaxseeds, and edamame, as these are rich in omega-3.
Even if you're only slightly dehydrated, your skin can look dull and dry. Water helps keep your skin plump and elastic, and elastic skin is less likely to get wrinkles. Water also flushes out toxins, so they don't build up on your skin and carry nutrients from food to your skin cells. While most liquids are hydrating, it's always best to drink water.
Staying hydrated is particularly important if you work in an office with the air conditioner or heater switched on all day as these dry the skin. Try to drink between six to eight cups of water daily to keep your skin hydrated.
Even if you take care to eat a healthy diet, your food will likely not contain all the nutrients, vitamins, and minerals you require for healthy skin. Because of this, it's helpful to take supplements. Good supplements for healthy skin include:
Creatine supplements are popular among gym goers. They're an excellent source of energy to fuel workouts, but creatine is also fantastic for the skin. Creatine helps to produce new skin cells to replace old, weary ones. It reduces signs of aging. You can check the best creatine for beginners if you are just starting.
Even though you can get Vitamin D naturally by spending ten to fifteen minutes in the sun, taking a Vitamin D supplement is probably safer than exposing your skin to the sun, which can be damaging. Vitamin D reduces dark spots, redness, rough patches, and wrinkles.
Besides protecting your skin from sun exposure, Vitamin E also prevents it from becoming dry and helps minimize inflammation.