We all know that health and wellbeing run more than skin deep, but it still helps make us feel better about ourselves if we have clear, glowing pores. Diet plays a large role in keeping your skin clear – so ditch those magical creams, which are probably doing more harm than good anyway, and get your fill of these essential food groups for a visage that screams vitality.
Your mom was right – there’s no fighting the simple truth that green vegetables are great for you, your body and your skin. Green vegetables like broccoli and spinach are high in antioxidants, which fight free radicals and leave you with clear skin. What’s more, they are packed with vitamin A and minerals like iron and potassium, which between them fight acne, repair damaged skin and generally sharpen up your skin’s appearance.
We all know that fruit is healthy, and most of us probably need to eat more of it. While we’re increasingly told to be watchful of the amount of sugar in our favorite fruits, there’s a big difference between getting a hit of fructose in fresh fruit and overdosing on sugary cakes. The high fiber content in many fruits means that a regular intake is great for your body all-round, but for your skin tropical fruits in particular are loaded with vitamin C. As well as its well-known role in keeping coughs and colds at bay, vitamin C’s antioxidant properties help combat free radicals, while it also helps your body produce collagen, for naturally young-looking, firm skin.
No, we’re not talking fat-loaded chocolate brownies – if only they were the way to super-soft skin. But don’t be fooled into thinking every type of fat is bad; the body desperately needs essential fatty acids like the omega-3 and omega-6 types that we’ve all heard of, since it cannot make them itself. Fatty acids are what your body needs to generate healthy skin cells and also sebum, an oily substance that ensures your skin remains hydrated.
Oily fish is a great source of omega-3 fatty acids, as are rapeseed oil, edamame beans, wild rice and various types of beans. These foods are also great for sufferers of eczema, since they help your body to produce anti-inflammatory compounds. For omega-6, look to increase your intake of cereals, whole grain bread, nuts and poultry. And make sure you eat a good balance of both – getting too much omega-6 to the detriment of your omega-3 intake can lead to acne and other skin disorders.
To get the clear skin benefits of dairy products, you need to opt for unpasteurized, fermented foods like cheese and yogurt. The probiotics these products contain boost your body’s supply of microorganisms and help improve the digestive process. Having them in your gut can help kick out the toxins and free radicals that cause skin damage and premature aging – research has linked greater bacteria production with lower incidence of acne. What’s more, enhanced digestion means your body sees more of the benefits of the nutrients in the food you eat, which also results in healthier skin. Probiotics help boost your immune system, too, keeping colds at bay and preventing you from getting run down while your skin suffers the consequences. The good news is that it’s not only dairy products that ooze probiotic benefits – sourdough bread and even moderate consumption of beer and wine can help you on the road to a brighter complexion.
Want to learn more about constructing a dietary plan that leaves you glowing from the inside? Talk to us and see how we can help.