Are you worried about the appearance of your skin (and shelling out hundreds of dollars on creams, gels and treatments to make it look flawless)? Stop spending so much money on products for the surface, and start nourishing your body from the inside out with healthy foods.
That’s right, if you want great skin, you have to begin on the inside with a diet rich in skin-friendly food. Ever heard the phrase, “You are what you eat?” Well this is no different for the skin as the foods you eat will show up on your face.
Here are some skin-loving foods to give you that glow, tightness and complexion you’re after.
If fine lines are bothering you, it’s nothing some high-protein yogurt can’t fix. Most yogurts don’t pack as much protein as Greek yogurt does, so opt for this type to ensure you are doubling your intake of protein in the dairy; this helps to make the skin more resistant to wrinkles.
Yogurt also contains zinc, which acts as an anti-inflammatory to reduce redness from conditions like acne and rosacea. The calcium in yogurt fights dry, flaky skin and promotes skin renewal. Calcium is already found within the skin’s epidermal layer, its thin outer layer, so giving it an added calcium boost will help.
Yogurt’s B vitamins help the skin to become radiant and hydrated, and vitamin B5 specifically promotes the manufacturing of healthy fats within the cells.
A cup a day will put you on track for better-looking skin. Make it Greek and choose unsweetened since added sugars may cause skin irritations.
Drinking water is vital for healthy skin (no, it’s not a food, but so important we had to include it!). The golden rule of eight glasses a day should be followed. An easy way to accomplish this is to drink one glass every two hours.
Water not only keeps the body hydrated, but assists in the movement of cells and flushes toxins out of the body. Fewer toxins mean healthier skin. And with an increase in water intake, your body can sweat better, which helps to clean your skin, leaving your complexion more clear and smooth.
Are you prone to pimples and bumps? Zap them by eating more kidney beans. Similar to yogurt, kidney beans are packed with zinc. Studies have revealed that topical treatments containing zinc reduce redness, but by eating four ounces a day (just half a cup in a bean salad or pureed as a dip for veggies or crackers), you can stay clear of breakouts.
Zinc also plays a large role in the function of sebaceous glands—our sweat glands. Overactive sebaceous glands can make acne worse. Low levels of zinc within the body can bring this on, so eat your kidney beans.
Also noteworthy, kidney beans are a low-glycemic food; this refers to a food’s ability to be converted into blood sugar by the body. Harvard Medical School researchers found that people with acne who consumed a low-glycemic diet reduced their acne by 25%.
The sweet, lovable fruit isn’t just delicious, but contains anti-aging properties. Strawberries have more vitamin C than even grapefruits and oranges, and vitamin C helps soften wrinkles and moisturize dry skin. Vitamin C also has been known to fight free radicals, the outcome of transforming food to energy in the body. Free radicals attack the cells, including those of the skin, causing wrinkles and that telltale “weathered” look.
Strawberries reduce the redness caused by acne, and help prevent acne and excess oil on the skin.
Are you worried lack of sleep is starting to show under your eyes? Slice up some strawberries and place them on those puffy areas. Relax, nap and wake up to a refreshed face!
The importance of sunscreen to protect our skin against UV rays continues to be a hot topic. Eating almonds is another way to defend your skin from the sun’s damaging rays. How exactly can a nut protect your skin? Almonds are loaded with vitamin E, proven to be a potent sun-blocker.
A study at Yale University had participants ingest 14 milligrams of vitamin E each day (about 20 almonds), while another group did not. The vitamin E group experienced far less sunburn than those who did not have the daily dose of almonds. Protect the skin from UV rays not only to avoid sunburn, but to reduce wrinkles, sun spots and your risk of skin cancer.
Make sure you tie together a regular routine of SPF lotion along with some almonds for ultimate protection!
If skincare is your focus, these Top 5 foods easily can be incorporated into your diet. You may even achieve multiple health benefits by eating these health foods on a regular basis—what else pairs better with beautiful skin than a healthy body!
Devon, R., “Kidney beans and acne,” Livestrong, June 30, 2011, http://www.livestrong.com/article/482664-kidney-beans-acne/.
Health Magazine, “5 Foods for healthy skin,” Health Magazine, May 27, 2014; http://www.health.com/health/gallery/0,,20481238_2,00.html.
Women’s Health Magazine, “The Perfect Skin Diet,” Women’s Health Magazine, May 27, 2014; http://www.womenshealthmag.com/beauty/foods-for-healthy-skin.