With so many diets and weight loss programs out there one can forget just how much food impacts your overall health, never mind your waist line. A healthy balanced diet and lifestyle is essential for clear, glowing, healthy skin and helps prevent premature ageing.
The key elements to ensure are included in your diet are Vitamins A, C and E, Iron, Zinc, additional Antioxidants and Healthy Fats.
It is important to note that certain food should be avoided such as highly processed meats & cheeses and excessive sugar. Dairy can also cause breakouts and blemishes for some individuals so cutting out dairy for a period of time might aid in getting those breakouts under control.
Deep fried food, excessive alcohol consumption and food high in sugar will also negatively affect your skin and overall health.
Take a look at our food recommendations below, which provide the key essentials and much more.
One of the most balanced foods on the planet. Nuts offer a good dose of healthy fats along with a smaller amount of protein and carbohydrates. Each type of nut offers a unique profile of minerals, phytochemicals, and types of fat.
Walnuts are the highest in plant omega-3s, for example, while Brazil nuts are best for selenium, which helps strengthen hair, skin and nails. Most nuts also contain phytochemicals such as Resveratrol and plant sterols, which is a key ingredient in advanced anti-ageing skin care as it helps fight free radicals and oxidative stress.
RED & BLUE FRUIT
Yes it’s all in the colour and these gorgeous fruits are packed with potent antioxidants and vitamins. Fresh and locally produced seasonal varieties are always better.
Berries, especially raspberries and strawberries, contain Ellagic acid, another phytochemical that may help protect against cancer-causing agents in the diet and the environment. While recent studies suggest that blueberries may help protect cells from damage and lower inflammation. Blueberries contain many of the vitamins and minerals known to strengthen the immune system, along with key phytochemicals that may help protect against cancer.
Grapes, especially red ones, are loaded with antioxidants such as resveratrol that help protect against free radicals, cancer and heart disease. Two of those phytochemical: Anthocyanin and Proanthocyanidin, are especially good for your immune system. Grapes also contain Vitamin C and Selenium. And yes red wine, in moderation, is included and contains these benefits too.
Tomatoes and red peppers are also high in Vitamin C and A.
GREEN VEGETABLES & BEANS
Eat your green things – broccoli, spinach, lettuce, asparagus and kale are super veggies that are high in nutrients, including Iron Vitamins C, E, and A, as well as Calcium and Folate. Folate is a natural form of Vitamin B9 that is easily absorbed by the body and is essential for healthy DNA and cellular activity. Making it great for anti-ageing aesthetics and overall heath.
Green beans offer these benefits as well as additional zinc and selenium, which help balance and strengthen your skin.
Orange vegetables such as butternut, pumpkin, carrots and sweet potato are a great addition to your diet. Sweet potatoes are high in Vitamins C and B6, Potassium, and fiber. They also bring to the table key nutrients such as calcium and whopping amounts of vitamin A.
Carrots are famously high in vitamin A, while butternut are tops in vitamins A and C.
Fish is rich in Omega 3’s which is an essential nutrient for hydrated, heathy, smooth and radiant skin. It also helps reduce inflammation and improve skin conditions such as acne and psoriasis. These fats are especially abundant in cold water fatty fish such as sardines, salmon, mackerel, tuna, anchovies, and black cod, among many others. Try eating fish 2 -3 times week.
A deficiency in Omega 3’s can cause skin to be dry and show more lines and wrinkles.
Lean meat such as chicken, ostrich and lean beef contain protein, Iron and Zinc, which is a key part of your skin’s dietary defence squad and is essential for new skin cell production and healthy cellular functions. It therefore helps heal and rejuvenate your skin.
Iron is essential for healthy skin. Individuals with dull, sensitive/ highly reactive skin and dark under eye circles, are often lacking in iron. If you find that your energy levels are low and your hair is also starting break and fall out, then we highly recommend an Iron supplement.
Zinc is also great for balancing the skin and preventing acne flare ups. Pimples develop when a buildup of oil, bacteria and skin cells block pores, causing the skin around the pore to turn red, swollen and tender. It can help control that inflammatory response. As zinc regulates cell production and turnover, it can help reduce the amount of natural oil your skin produces, and helps prevent pores from clogging in the first place.
Zinc can be taken as a supplement too.
When it comes to health and vitality, think fresh, colourful and diverse.
VITAMINS WITHIN SKIN CARE
Vitamin C is essential for healthy skin and great for preventing signs of ageing. Your skin needs it to create collagen, which is the main structural protein that keeps your skin strong and healthy. Vitamin C is also an antioxidant that protects your skin from oxidative damage caused by the sun and environment, which can lead to signs of ageing
A deficiency in vitamin C is rare these days, but common symptoms include dry, rough, scaly skin that tends to bruise easily. Vitamin C is also a powerful ingredient in many serums and creams as it helps promote radiant glowing skin and fights free radical damage, to prevent premature ageing.
Vitamin A is a popular and effective anti-ageing ingredient in many skin care products – It’s other forms are known as RetinA or Retinol, which has incredible anti-ageing properties. When applied topically it increases cell turnover and helps improve collagen production. It is great for skin showing signs of ageing as well as pigmented and blemished skin.
Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant that promotes skin healing and rejuvenation. It is great for treating parched and dehydrated skin as well as sun burnt skin. It also has proven to be an effective ingredient to treat stretch marks and scars. It is beneficial to get a healthy dose of vitamin E within your diet and can be applied topically too within an oil or cream.
References: Research through a variety of doctors on webMD.com and healthline.com