We’re not dietitians, but we know skin, and, in the spirit of that notion, let’s talk about some different foods that have positive effects on your body’s largest organ and key protective agent. Taking care of your skin is imperative, so be mindful of what you’re ingesting and keep your skin’s health optimized.
Here are thirteen foods that help bolster skin health:
Salmon, Mackerel, and Herring are but a few examples of fatty fish that are high in Omega-3 fatty acids which aide in keeping your skin thick, supple and moisturized. In short, Omega-3s help keep your skin gracefully looking younger as you age. Further benefit include the abundance of zinc in fatty fish which causes an overall reduction of inflammation that can cause general redness and acne. A diet rich in Omega-3 fatty acids can even make your skin less sensitive to the sun's harmful UV rays, helping to battle the potential occurrence of various skin cancers such as melanoma.
Like fatty fish, avocados are high in beneficial fats that keep your skin supple and well moisturized. They’re high in vitamin E which is a nutrient humans generally don’t get enough of. Vitamin E is an essential antioxidant that helps combat against UV radiation / skin cancers, and helps create collagen which is key in the act of keeping your skin springy and elastic – which aides in the prevention of wrinkles and dry, uncomfortable (sometimes cracked) skin.
We’re going to keep cruising on the Omege-3 fatty acid train for a moment here… Walnuts are noted as being a great source of these beneficial fats as well – ranking higher than other common nuts you can find on the market. Walnuts are also quite high in zinc, which is essential in helping your skin function properly as a barrier – protecting the rest of your body. Zinc is also a mineral that is fundamentally necessary for wound healing and fighting both bacteria and inflammation.
Broccoli has many benefits, including the fact that it contains lutein, a carotenoid that works similarly to beta-carotene. Lutein helps protect your skin from oxidative damage, which can cause the skin to become dry and wrinkled. The broccoli’s florets contain a special compound known as sulforaphane which helps battle skin cancers. Sulforaphane works in two ways… First by neutralizing harmful free radicals, and then, in turn “activating” other protective systems in the body.
Tomatoes, in all their glory, are a great source of vitamin C and all of the major carotenoids that help keep your body healthy and functioning well. One such carotenoid that is uniquely abundant in tomatoes is lycopene. This particular carotenoid has shown to protect the skin against damage from the sun and may also help prevent wrinkling. In order to get the full benefits of absorbing carotenoids, a fat must be present such as olive oil – keep that in mind…
In general, it’s always important to consume an assortment of fruits and vegetables of all shapes, sizes, and colors. Orange and yellow colored fruits and veggies are full of phytochemicals, which are powerful antioxidants, fit for keeping your skin’s complexion radiant, youthful, and healthy. Phytochemicals regenerate essential nutrients, and work to protect against cancer-causing agents such as UV radiation.
Mmm… Chocolate. Studies have shown that consuming dark chocolate constructed of at least 70% cocoa is high in antioxidants which can help with your skin texture, making the skin less rough and scaly, less sensitive to sunburn. The high yield of antioxidants in dark chocolate also produce thicker, more hydrated skin and yield better blood flow, bringing more beneficial nutrients to the skin and other parts of your body.
Speaking of highly beneficial antioxidants, green tea is abundant in catechins which are powerful antioxidants that can protect your skin against sun damage and reduce skin redness, as well as improve the hydration, thickness and elasticity of skin – providing you with a more youthful glow and protecting your skin from some of the harsh realities of aging.
Red wine seems to make its way onto every list dealing with beneficial foods, right? In large part, it’s warranted. Red wine contains resveratrol, a compound that comes from the skin of red grapes. Resveratrol is known to have a variety of health benefits – including being great for the skin. When applied, resveratrol has been shown to slow the skin’s aging process. When consumed, it can reduce the production of harmful free radicals, which damage skin cells and cause signs of aging. We’re not saying to start binging on red wine, but a glass with dinner can certainly help you out in more ways than one!
Beans, peas, and lentils are not only low in fat and contain no cholesterol, they also help reduce inflammation of your skin which aides in preventing painful, inflamed bouts of acne and red spots. This is due to the fact that beans, peas, and lentils are low-glycemic foods that keep blood sugar and insulin levels in check. In high-glycemic foods, blood sugar and insulin levels can spike out of control and cause hormonal changes leading to skin issues. And who wants skin issues? Nobody.
Eggs contain minerals that benefit your skin a great deal. Iron found in eggs leads to healthy red blood cell function which provides your skin cells with oxygen. Another mineral that’s abundant in eggs is selenium which works to activate enzymes in your skin cells that protect your skin from the damaging effects of aging. Ah, yes, the incredible edible egg!
It’s been shown that consuming four or more herbs regularly – such as rosemary, thyme, dill, etc. – combats disease such as skin cancer. Herbs are loaded with antioxidants that protect your skin by removing free radicals before they can do irreversible damage. They’re not only tasty and add “spice” to you food – they also spice up and protect your life. Accent your dinner, or prepare an herb laced spread for that noontime sandwich fix.
Quite simply, without water life does not exist. Seems reason enough to consume it, right? With respect to your skin, water keeps your skin hydrated, which contributes to healthy vibrancy. Water is also preferred over other, sugary drinks which can cause issues such as acne and collagen depletion which can cause expedited aging and saggy skin. Water also contributes to the healthy. optimized function of your skin cells by carrying essential vitamins and minerals and removing toxins through excretion.
There are many ways you can help keep your skin healthy and strong. Diet is one of the most important (if not the most important) ways to manage its wellbeing, which in turn, keeps your entire body protected and durable to carry on its day-to-day functions. Next, we’ll visit foods to avoid when it comes to your overall skin health. Stay tuned!
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