We have all been told throughout childhood that an apple a day keeps the doctor away, but it doesn't stop at just that.
Your diet has a direct effect on your skin, and if you are after clean and clear skin, your diet might be the culprit that is holding you back. Your skin needs to be nourished from all angles. Your skin care routine has the outside covered, but what is helping on the inside?
Maintaining a well-balanced diet is not just about eating as clean as possible; it is about taking into account the food you are putting in your body and understanding what that food can do for you. Nuts are packed with omega-3 fatty acids which have anti-inflammatory properties. Vegetables are loaded with Vitamin C, which directly impacts cell revitalization. Ingredients, such as spices and herbs, can also bring aid to your diet – basil has antibiotic and antifungal properties, parsley can help rebalance discoloration and oil production, and horsetail is an astringent which tones the skin to assist with anti-aging. What does your Hershey bar provide?
By no means is this a ‘stay away from all things sugary and alcoholic', but it is important to know that these products do not serve your skin.
What to avoid or limit:
Sugar directly breaks down collagen. Collagen is a very important protein that ensures the integrity and elasticity of your skin. Too much sugar causes inflammation, which is a nightmare for your skin to regulate.
Alcohol dehydrates your entire body. Dehydrated skin appears dull and is prone to produce wrinkles. Instead of combating a late night out with copious amounts of water the next day, try drinking water throughout your night.
Dairy has inflammatory properties. And due to the production process, some dairy products contain growth hormones. Hormonal imbalances plague teenagers with acne and skin issues, and growth hormones in dairy products can cause the same imbalances.
What should I have in my diet?
The most important thing for your skin is water. Hydration is not only key for your internal organs to excel, but also for your skin. You lose a lot of moisture throughout the day, ie. sweat. Staying hydrated will keep up your skin's moisture levels but also aid in cell regeneration and elasticity.
Fruits and Vegetables
Vitamin C is essential to your health and skin. This vitamin aids in oxidation caused by free radicals, which wards off skin damage. Raw and unprocessed fruits and vegetables should be a staple in your diet. If you are someone who can’t process raw fruits and vegetables, try clean cooking methods – be mindful of cooking oils and sprays, or supplemental replacements
This mineral is found in most meats, and protein packed products, such as beans and lentils. Zinc supports cellular turnover and regeneration.
Diet and skin health go hand in hand. The more natural and unprocessed your diet, the clearer and radiant your skin will be. The biggest change you can make today that will impact your skin and health the most is WATER. Hydration should be your biggest concern, from there, add in a few oranges, spinach and some nuts. You will be surprised at how quickly your skin will change due to a few small adjustments to your diet.
Try this recipe that will have your skin glowing from the inside out:
Total time: 15 mines
1 cup roasted root vegetables (anything you have in the fridge)
½ cup cooked or canned black beans, rinsed
2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon chili powder
¼ teaspoon kosher salt
¼ teaspoon ground pepper
4 corn tortillas, lightly toasted or warmed
½ avocado, cut into slices
1 lime, cut into wedges
Chopped fresh cilantro & salsa for garnish
Step 1 Combine the first 7 ingredients in a saucepan. Cover and cook over medium-low heat until heated through, 8 minutes.
Step 2 Portion equally amongst tortillas and top with avocado. Serve with lime. Garnish with cilantro and/or salsa, if desired.
Step 3 Enjoy!
Mindful eating doesn’t have to be boring. Making your food flavorful with spices and various ingredients not only makes eating more tasty but will also have desirable effects on your health and skin.