There is a lot of debate surrounding which foods are essentially ‘bad’ for your skin – which may be covered in a Top 10 list at a later date. However it’s a lot harder trying to improve your skin from the inside out by focusing on the ‘bad’ so we thought we’d give you some of the good to go off, to get you started. One of the most important things in food to keep your skin looking fresh is Vitamin A, which will be explained in more detail in some of the items below. You should also look out for any foods with protein or “good” fats – protein to strengthen your skin to keep from faster effects of aging, and good fats to keep your skin looking young, fresh and full. Foods rich in any of the above, and antioxidants, will all be beneficial, however we’ve chosen the 10 best foods for your skin and they are as follows…
Packed with Vitamin A, which increases the turnover rate of cells, mangoes will put the glow back into your skin. As importantly, mangoes reduce dryness and flakiness. If your skin is more of the oily type mangoes will still benefit you – often oil is produced as the skins overreaction to initial dryness or dehydration of the skin. Mangoes are the perfect example of why vitamin A is so good for your skin.
9. Deep Red/Purple Foods
Deep red or purple foods such as beetroot, stone fruits, purple kale, the acai berry and more, work wonders for the skin. With high levels of flavonoids, anthocyanins, and resveratrol, the benefits of purple or deep red foods are too numerous to state. Put simply, these foods prevent aging, strengthen skin from imperfections, and help even skin tone by fighting the redness from weak blood vessels.
Lower fat dairy products work wonders for the skin. While you do have to be careful to stay away from full cream milk, which sometimes contains hormones that will wreak havoc, most low fat dairy products will be beneficial. The best option is yoghurt, high in protein as well as vitamin A. The protein keeps your skin resistant to wrinkles, and vitamin A is proven to do wonders to clear up and even out skin (as mentioned in the benefits under ‘Mangoes’)
Fish are high in the good fats, specifically Omega-3. Omega-3 works wonders for the skin, as it is a natural antidote to inflammation. This helps specifically in keeping minor skin irritations and unevenness at bay. The best fish for this purpose is usually Salmon, however tuna, shellfish, and most other seafood dishes also offer up similar advantages. Another option is to buy fish oil tablets, however it is always more beneficial for your body to try to get the most nutrients out of your diet before turning to supplements.
6. Flax Seeds/Flax Seed Oil
An excellent alternative to the fatty oils in fish which benefit your skin, Flax Seeds edge their way further up the list because they’re suitable for a wider range of people – either those who don’t enjoy the taste of fish or fish oil tablets, or vegetarians. As with fish, the Omega-3 helps to fight inflammations in the skin, promoting an even skin tone and that healthy glow.
5. Nuts (Mainly Almonds and Walnuts)
Nuts also contain good fats, however depending on which nuts you’re eating there are many more benefits derived to help out your skin. In almonds there is a lot of Vitamin E that, as you’d know if you’ve ever tried to get rid of a scar, is excellent for skin SkinCell PRO renewal. Vitamin E also protects your facial tissue from minor harm and irritations, which are often the start of pimples. Walnuts contain a lot of Omega-3 which in this form will help to improve skin elasticity, as well as containing copper which boosts collagen.
4. Berries (Mainly Blueberries)
Rich in Vitamin C, berries support the production of collagen, the layer under the top of the skin. A strong foundation helps to prevent wrinkles and the effects of stress and aging on the skin. Blueberries are especially a rich source of antioxidants, which keep your skin young and glowing as well as keeping the rest of your body healthy.
3. Green leafy vegetables
Dark, leafy green vegetables contain beta-carotene, which is an antioxidant which helps repair skin sells and is reported to help fight cancers such as skin cancers. Green and leafy vegetables will help repair your skin from sun damage, as well as flushing out your system, strengthening your skin. Beta-carotene is also converted in your body to Vitamin A, the benefits of which should be drilled into you by now.
2. Green tea
For even more antioxidants, drink green tea. An all-round detox for your body, green tea helps to flush out infections and brighten the skin with hydration, as well as protecting it with antioxidants and evening out skin tone. The benefits of green tea have been well discussed, and it has earned the number 2 spot for being such an undoubtedly healthy drink – many varieties now exist and are readily available in supermarkets, so if straight green tea is a bit much for you there are alternatives with just as many benefits!
Although it should go without saying, for many people it doesn’t. Water is the be all and end all force – if you are dehydrated, your skin will be dehydrated. This has the obvious effects on your appearance – dry skin, sullen skin, looking tired or pale – and is so easy to remedy! There has been a bit of contention surrounding how much water you require each day, however the rule of thumb is that by the time you’re thirsty you’re already dehydrated. Keep a water bottle nearby and your skin will thank you – if you haven’t been drinking enough water previously you will feel the difference almost immediately!
You may be thinking that there hasn’t been much mention of ‘acne fighting’ foods – this is for good reason. Often the above are touted as acne fighting, although this isn’t technically correct. Extreme cases of acne are usually best treated medicinally or with consultation of a dermatologist. For those of you who get the odd outbreak here and there the best possible thing you can do for your skin is strengthen it – both physically, by eating foods with collagen and forming a good foundation for your skin, and figuratively. The stronger your immune system is to infections, the stronger your skin is to infections – which is what pimples are the majority of the time.
To put it simply – if skin is weaker and less healthy in the first place, it’s much easier for dirt to leave its mark and form a pimple. On the same token, if your skin is weaker and dry, this can cause an overproduction in oil, thus causing pimples. Obviously I encourage good skin care and routines, however the best way to fix your skin troubles in from the inside out.