We all know that good nutrition is important for our health. An unhealthy diet can damage our metabolism, cause weight gain, and even damage organs, such as our heart and liver.
What we eat also affects another organ — our skin!
What we eat can significantly affect the health and aging of our skin.
Let’s take a look at foods that can assist us in having healthy, fresh, strong, toned skin.
1. Fatty fish
Fatty fish, such as Salmon, Mackerel, and Herring, are all excellent foods for healthy skin. They’re full of antioxidants that calm inflammation. They’re rich sources of Omega-3 fatty acids, which are important for maintaining skin health. The free fatty acids serve as building blocks for healthy skin cells. Omega-3 fatty acids are necessary to help keep skin thick, supple and moisturised. An Omega-3 fatty acid deficiency can actually cause dry skin, and since our bodies don't have the ability to produce the fatty acids themselves, eating them helps reinforce our skin's barrier, and keeps moisture in and irritants out.
The Omega-3 fats in fish reduce inflammation, which can cause redness and acne, and can even make our skin less sensitive to the sun’s harmful UV rays.
Fatty fish is also a source of Vitamin E, one of the most important antioxidants for our skin. Getting enough Vitamin E is essential for helping protect our skin against damage from free radicals and inflammation.
Finally, fish provides Zinc — a mineral vital for regulating:
Overall skin health
Production of new skin cells
Avocados are high in healthy fats. These fats benefit many functions in our body, including the health of our skin. Getting enough of these fats is essential to help keep skin flexible and moisturised.
Avocados contain compounds that may help protect our skin from sun damage. UV damage to our skin can cause wrinkles and other signs of aging.
There's a reason why Avocados are a popular ingredient for face masks. Avocados penetrate cells at the deepest level, which is virtually a tasty way to get a basal layer skin dose of vitamins A, D, and E, good fats, and phytonutrients.
Interestingly, Vitamin E seems to be more effective when combined with Vitamin C. Vitamin C is also essential for healthy skin. Our skin needs it to create collagen, which is the main structural protein that keeps our skin strong and healthy.
Walnuts have many characteristics that make them an excellent food for healthy skin. They’re a good source of essential fatty acids, which as already stated, are fats that our bodies cannot make themselves.
Walnuts are richer than most other nuts in both Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids.
Although, a diet too high in Omega-6 fats may promote inflammation, including inflammatory conditions of the skin like psoriasis. On the other hand, Omega-3 fats reduce inflammation in our body and skin, and amps up collagen production. Collagen is the protein that helps improve skin elasticity, preventing sagging and ultimately leaves our skin looking more plump and youthful. As walnuts contain a good ratio of these fatty acids, they may help fight the potential inflammatory response to excessive Omega-6.
Walnuts are full of these and other nutrients, such as Zinc and Vitamin E that our skin needs to function properly and stay healthy.
4. Sunflower seeds
In general, nuts and seeds are good sources of skin-boosting nutrients.
Sunflower seeds are an excellent example, as they include Vitamin E, which is an important antioxidant for our skin.
5. Sweet potatoes
Beta Carotene is a nutrient found in foods such as Oranges, Carrots, Spinach and Sweet potatoes.
Carotenoids like Beta Carotene help keep our skin healthy by acting as a natural sunblock and may protect our skin from sun damage.
When consumed, this antioxidant is incorporated into our skin and helps protect our skin cells from sun exposure. This may help prevent sunburn, cell death, and dry, wrinkled skin.
Interestingly, high amounts of Beta Carotene may also add a warm, orange colour to our skin, contributing to an overall healthier appearance.
6. Red or Yellow Bell Peppers
Like Sweet Potatoes, Bell Peppers are an excellent source of both Beta Carotene & Vitamin C, both of which are important antioxidants for skin. Carotenoids are the antioxidant that decreases sun sensitivity, diminishing the appearance of fine lines around the eyes and crow's feet.
Vitamin C is also necessary to create collagen, which as said, keeps skin firm and strong.
Broccoli is full of many vitamins and minerals important for skin health, including Zinc, Vitamin A, and Vitamin C.
It also contains lutein, a carotenoid that works like Beta Carotene. Lutein helps protect our skin from oxidative damage, which can cause our skin to become dry and wrinkled. There's also vitamin K in broccoli, which speeds up the healing of bruises and may even help improve dark undereye circles."
Tomatoes are a great source of vitamin C and contain all of the major carotenoids, including lycopene.
Lycopene is a potent antioxidant to protect skin from UV damage
As tomatoes are rich in carotenoids, they’re an excellent food for maintaining healthy skin.
9. Kidney Beans
This fibrous, protein-rich food does wonders for our skin. They are very rich in zinc, which has high healing properties that help fight acne.
10. Dark chocolate
Yes, that's right, chocolate is on the list. Dark chocolate is great for skin firming. Cocoa contains antioxidants that helps protect our skin against sunburn. These antioxidants may also improve wrinkles, skin thickness, hydration, blood flow, and skin texture.
It also has flavonols, which is a very potent antioxidant. Be sure to avoid any chocolate less than 70 percent cacao. Look for high cacao concentrations because these have less sugar, which can be terrible for our skin.
11. Green tea
Green tea may help protect our skin from damage and aging.
The powerful compounds found in green tea are called catechins and work to improve the health of our skin in several ways. This includes protecting our skin against sun damage and reducing redness, as well as improving its hydration, thickness and elasticity.
Since green tea contains polyphenols, making it an antioxidant and an anti-inflammatory, it can be used as a great toner to treat acne. It's great for healing blemishes and scars, flushes out toxins, and also keeps skin supple.
12. Red Grapes & Berries
Fruits and vegetables owe their vibrant colours to antioxidants, and berries are a wonderful source. A diet that includes Red Grapes, Blueberries, Raspberries, Cherries, Pomegranates and the like, will provide a range of protective antioxidants that shield our skin from free radicals.
Red grapes are famous for containing resveratrol, a compound that comes from the skin of red grapes. Resveratrol is credited with a wide range of health benefits, among them is reducing the effects of aging.
13. Greek Yogurt
Greek yogurt is great for banishing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. "It's rich in B vitamins, which helps to detox our skin.
In summary, we are what we eat and can significantly affect our skin health.
"Give Yourself a Botanical Kiss from Butterflyy Bliss"