Everyone has a favorite face cream or treatment, but healthy skin begins from the inside out. Older cells are continually shed and replaced by newer ones, so a steady supply of key nutrients is needed to keep this rapid growth going. If you eat the right foods, you'll give your skin the nutrients it needs to remain soft, supple, and free of blemishes.
Regardless of how hard we try to avoid it, our skin does age over time. Overexposure to the sun and tanning beds, strong soaps, additives, and inadequate nutrition can all hasten the appearance of wrinkles and age spots on the skin. With this in mind, it's best to take a holistic approach.
Eat antioxidant-rich fruits and vegetables, healthy fats from fatty fish and nuts, and a diverse and balanced diet to care for your skin and improve your nutrition. This should include optimum levels of nutrients like beta carotene, vitamins C and E, zinc, and selenium, which are all essential for glowing skin.
1. Consume at least Five Portions of Fruits and Vegetables per Day
Fruits and vegetables are high in antioxidants, which help to protect skin from free radical cellular damage. Wrinkling and age spots can be caused by free radicals, smoking, noise, and sunlight. Consume a rainbow of colorful fruits and vegetables daily, aiming for at least five servings. Beta-carotene, which can be found in carrots, sweet potatoes, and pumpkin, and lutein, which can be found in kale, papaya, and spinach, are powerful antioxidants that are important for skin cell growth and tone.
2. Get Enough Vitamin C in Your Diet
Vitamin C is an important antioxidant as well. It is needed to support the immune system, encourage radiant skin, and aid in the healing of blemishes. Blueberries, broccoli, guava, kiwi fruits, oranges, strawberries, and sweet potatoes are the strongest sources. Vitamin C is needed for the formation of collagen, which helps to reinforce the capillaries that supply the skin.
3. Don't Go on a Crash Diet
Losing and gaining weight frequently will harm your skin, resulting in sagging, wrinkles, and stretch marks. Crash diets are often deficient in important vitamins and minerals. This form of dieting can have an effect on your skin over time. It's always best to eat a well-balanced, organic diet. If you're thinking of starting a diet, make sure you have all the details first. Check out our expert guides to common diets and read the six items you should think about before you start.
4. Increase the Selenium Intake
Selenium is an extremely active antioxidant. It supports the immune system by working in conjunction with other antioxidants such as vitamins E and C. According to research, eating a selenium-rich diet will help prevent skin cancer, sun damage, and age spots. Brazil nuts are one way to increase your consumption. The suggested daily amount is provided by only four nuts (RDA). As a snack or salad garnish, mix Brazil nuts with other vitamin E-rich seeds. Fish, shellfish, poultry, wheat germ, tomatoes, and broccoli are also healthy sources.
5. Make Sure You Get Enough Vitamin E
Vitamin E protects the skin from oxidative (cell) damage and encourages the development of healthy skin. Almonds, avocado, hazelnuts, pine nuts, and sunflower and corn oils are all rich in vitamin E.
6. Every Day, Drink Six to Eight Glasses of Water
Moisture is needed for the skin to remain flexible. Your skin will appear dry, tired, and slightly grey if you are dehydrated even slightly. Drink six to eight glasses of water a day – all fluids count, but water is the highest. Keep a big bottle of water on your desk if you work in an office to remind you to drink. Teas that are caffeine-free and herbal are also fine. Remember that certain fruits and vegetables, such as watermelon, courgette, and cucumber, provide fluids as well – and the minerals they contain can help you hydrate your body and skin faster. Stop smoking and alcohol intake, as these can cause premature aging of the skin.
7. Consume Some Good Fats
Important fatty acids are contained in monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, which can be found in avocados, oily fish, nuts, and seeds. They serve as a natural moisturizer for your skin, keeping it supple and enhancing elasticity. These fats also provide a healthy dose of vitamin E (a vitamin that many of us are deficient in), which can help protect against free radical harm.
8. Choose Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Make sure you're getting enough omega-3 and omega-6 fats in your diet. These are essential fatty acids, which means they can't be produced by the body and must be absorbed from food. Omega-3s can be found in oily fish as well as plant sources like linseed and its oil, chia seeds, walnuts, and rapeseed oil. Omega-3 fats stimulate the development of anti-inflammatory compounds in the body, which may aid in the treatment of inflammatory skin conditions like eczema and psoriasis.
9. Increase the Intake of Phytoestrogens
Phyto-estrogens are phytoestrogens, which are natural chemicals found in plants (phyto from the Greek word for plant). They have a structure that is similar to the female sex hormone estrogen, and they have been found to aid in the balance of our natural hormones. There are many types; some are found in soya bean products (Isoflavones) including tofu, while others are found in wholegrain fiber, fruit, vegetables, and linseed oil (lignans). As part of a well-balanced diet, include phytoestrogen-rich soy, whole grains, fruits, and vegetables.
10. Choose Carbs with a Low Glycemic Index
The glycaemic index (GI) is a ranking system for carbohydrate-containing foods based on how easily or slowly they are broken down into glucose throughout the body. Consume a range of low-GI, slow-releasing carbohydrates, such as beans, pulses, porridge, and other legumes. These slowly release sugar into the bloodstream, giving you a constant supply of energy and making you feel fuller for longer, making you less likely to snack. High-GI carbohydrates, such as biscuits and sugary drinks, induce the production of insulin, which damages collagen and speeds up wrinkle formation.
11. Get Enough of Zinc in Your Diet
Zinc aids in the regular functioning of the skin's sebaceous glands (which contain oil) and aids in the repair of skin damage as well as keeping skin moist and supple. Fish, lean red meat, whole grains, poultry, nuts, seeds, and shellfish are all high in zinc.