Foods and Nutrients That Promote Healthy Skin
If you desire a glowing complexion to go along with that beautifully sculpted body then it can be accomplished by filling your diet with foods for good skin. It isn’t necessary to spend your hard earned money on skin products when it is better spent on healthy foods which are full of nutrients that benefit your skin as well as your overall health.
Your skin is one of the largest and most durable organs and comprises approximately 16% of your total body weight. This amazing organ works to regulate body temperature and eliminate waste. It is also the organ that is seen in abundance by the public, more so at the beach and even more so in the bedroom! Therefore, it is just as important to think about skin health as it is about any other aspect of a healthy lifestyle.
Since a balanced diet that is rich in healthy skin nutrients is vital for the elimination and prevention of skin problems, let’s take a look at the best minerals and vitamins for healthy skin and some of the delicious food choices that contain them.
Vitamin E is probably one of the most well known nutrients for healthy skin. This important vitamin acts as an antioxidant which fights against free radicals that can cause both skin damage and aging.
Add to Diet: avocados, sunflower seeds, nuts, olive oil, green olives, spinach, basil and oregano.
Although vitamin C is best known for its ability to boost the immune system and stop colds and viruses, it is also a powerful element in maintaining good skin health. This is due to it acting as an antioxidant against the damage from free radicals associated with pollution, smoke, excessive sun radiation, etc. Vitamin C, along with zinc and copper, is used to form elastin which provides your skin’s elasticity.
Add to Diet: Dark leafy greens (spinach, mustard greens, kale, etc), broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cauliflower, peppers (bell, red and green chili), thyme, parsley, citrus fruits (orange, grapefruit, lemon, etc), papaya, guavas, kiwi and strawberries.
Both the repair and maintenance of skin tissue requires vitamin A. Skin problems such as a dry, flaky complexion result from insufficient vitamin A levels. Besides providing a healthy complexion, this vitamin will help with anti-aging.
Add to Diet: Liver, carrots, sweet potatoes, butternut squash, dark leafy greens, lettuce (avoid Iceberg which only provides 10% RDA compared to 150% in leafy varieties), cantaloupe, dried apricots, paprika, red & cayenne pepper, chili powder and dried parsley, basil, marjoram, dill and oregano.
Vitamin B Complex
Biotin is a main component of B vitamins which is necessary in building healthy skin, hair and nails. Dermatitis is a common culprit of a vitamin B deficiency. The B complex vitamins consist of B1 (Thiamin), B2 (Riboflavin), B3 (Niacin), B5 (Pantothenic Acid) and B12.
B vitamins which are the most prominent in skin health are:
B3 – Niacin – Aids the skin in retaining moisture which produces a younger and more filled out look. Niacin also contains qualities which are anti-inflammatory and helps prevent dry and irritated skin. It also works to provide an even skin tone.
Add to Diet: Fish (tuna anchovies, swordfish), crude rice and wheat bran, liver, veal, chicken (white meat), sun-dried tomatoes, peanuts, yeast extract spread and paprika.
B1 – Thiamine – Promotes the regulation of blood circulation and provides a healthy glow to your skin.
Add to Diet: Sunflower seeds, pine nuts, pistachios, sesame seeds, macadamia nuts, pecans, lean pork chops, fish, yeast extract spread and dried herbs and spices.
Vitamin K is what assists with blood clotting. Studies also reveal that it reduces dark circles under the eyes and alleviates bruising.
Add to Diet: Dark leafy greens, herbs (both fresh and dried), scallions, broccoli, asparagus, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, pickled cucumbers (low sodium pickles), prunes, curry, paprika, cayenne and chili powder.
Part of the zinc, copper, vitamin C formula for skin elasticity, zinc also helps with acne problems by balancing oil production and healing acne lesions.
Add to Diet: Oysters, veal liver, roast beef (low fat), lamb, peanuts, dried watermelon seeds, roasted squash and pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, toasted wheat germ and cocoa powder and dark chocolate.
Copper is the other third of the skin formula (along with zinc and vitamin C) which is necessary to create healthy skin elasticity.
Add to Diet: Liver, lobster, oysters, squid (calamari), roasted pumpkin and squash seeds, sunflower seeds, sesame seeds, nuts, sun-dried tomatoes, dried herbs and cocoa powder and dark chocolate.
Selenium is an important component in the protection against skin damage from solar radiation. It acts to reduce the burning of the skin and, therefore, is helpful in the prevention of skin cancer.
Add to Diet: Brazil nuts, sunflower seeds, shellfish (oysters, lobster, crab, shrimp, mussels), fish, liver, caviar, lean pork chops and bran (wheat, oat, rice).
Essential Fatty Acids
EFAs, like Omega 3 and Omega 6, are vital for healthy skin. These elements make the skin healthy and supple due to their regulation of cellular function and preservation of elasticity. Various skin problems can result from fatty acid deficiency. Most people get sufficient amounts of Omega 6. However, Omega 3 is available in fewer foods and should be added to a nutritious diet.
Omega 3 – The particular function of this nutrient is to guard cell membranes from harmful elements. It also works to keep cell membranes healthy by allowing for easy entry of nutrients and easy extraction of waste products.
Add to Diet: Fish (anchovies, black cod, halibut, herring, mackerel, salmon, sardines, trout), scallops, oysters, cabbage, cauliflower, soy beans and oil, walnuts (and oil), mustard seeds, pumpkin seeds, flax seeds and oil, canola oil, cloves, oregano and tofu.
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