One of the biggest ongoing debates in the beauty world is, does the food you eat affect your skin? By eliminating certain foods from your diet can you cure acne? Like many things in life, there is no black and white answer, but rather a lot of greys! Here I’ll explain all that grey to you and share with you some of the best food for healthy skin.
Does your eating affect your skin?
The simple answer to that is yes….and no! To explain this in more detail – the food you eat will affect your skin…to an extent. Someone who is prone to acne will always be prone to acne no matter what he or she eats. Certain foods will make it worse and certain foods will make it better. The relationship between the food you eat and your skin is very complex, however, over time it has become clear to dermatologists that people who have nutritional deficiencies will have side effects on their skin. Since nutritional deficiencies come from not eating the right food, it is advisable to eat the right food.
Food you should avoid
The main culprit of bad skin is sugar, that is, the wrong kind of sugar (sugar that doesn’t come from fruit or natural sources). Bad sugar is never good for your skin or your health, it causes your insulin to spike which basically inflames your body. Sugar speeds up the ageing process by making the skin less elastic which causes a host of other issues. All in all, avoid sugar as much as you can.
Many people are told to avoid dairy products too. This is because dairy usually has a lot of hormones in it, this is worse in some countries than others. An increase in unnecessary hormones can result in breakouts. If you are struggling with acne or random breakouts you can try going off dairy for a while and see if your skin improves.
These are the two main groups of food that I recommend watching how much you eat of them if you have breakouts. Even if you don’t have breakouts, I advise you to have as little sugar as possible, there are no signs of sugar ever helping anyone! However, you don’t need to go to the extreme with it- indulging once in a while won’t affect your skin too much, nor your health.
The best food for healthy skin
The best food for healthy skin is natural fruit and vegetables. They all contain a ton of nutrients and vitamins that are vital to our body and do wonders for our skin. Below are a few of the most important vitamins and food to look out for.
Vitamin C is one of the best vitamins for your skin, it is a super antioxidant which promotes radiant skin, helps blemishes heal properly and it makes the immune system stronger. The best foods with vitamin C are oranges, sweet potatoes, kiwis, broccoli, blueberries and strawberries. Adding these to your diet will benefit your skin tremendously.
Vitamin E helps protect against free radical damage and it repairs damaged skin from within and out. Free radical damage is basically where the cells in the body are damaged and not working properly, you need antioxidants to fight against it. This is the job of Vitamin E and it can be found in foods like avocados, oily fish, nuts and seeds, mangoes, broccoli, spinach and tomatoes to name a few.
A delicious favourite that also happens to be good for your skin is dark chocolate! I wish the same could be said for pizza but sadly…..:(
Dark chocolate is rich in cocoa flavonols which is an antioxidant. Studies have shown that people who have a high intake of dark chocolate have improved elasticity. I’m only mentioning here the skin benefits but dark chocolate has a ton of other benefits on our bodies and health. You can read more about it here.
Nuts and seeds are also amazing for the skin. They contain a lot of nutrients and vitamins and they are rich in antioxidants. Some nuts like walnuts are also full of fatty acids which have omega 3 and 6, these are essential to healthy skin.
Water! Although this isn’t technically food, without enough water in our bodies we get dehydrated and then our skin dries out. I recently did an experiment where I drank about 3 litres of water a day. The results were astounding- read the full post here.
These are just a few of the ways that you can boost the health of your skin. The best food for healthy skin is really natural food. This doesn’t mean you have to go clean eating, but rather be aware of what food you put inside your mouth and try to adopt healthy eating habits. By doing so, your skin will improve drastically and so will your health!
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