You can mask it, exfoliate it, cleanse it and moisturise it, but no amount of product applied to the skin, whatever the promise or price tag, can compensate for a poor diet.
For a clear, smooth and glowing complexion, the foods we put into our body are just as important as what we put onto our skin in the form of creams, lotions and potions. Nourish the skin from the inside out with the following ‘beauty foods’:
Rich in vitamin E, a powerful antioxidant that helps to protect the skin from damaging molecules from both within the body and from outside sources such as pollution, sun exposure, cosmetics and processed foods. Avocados are also packed with monounsaturated “good” fats that help to maintain moisture in the epidermal (outermost) layer of the skin, keeping it feeling soft and hydrated.
These juicy fruits are made up of over 90% water, making them deeply hydrating. They’re also rich in vitamin C, found in high concentrations in the upper layers of the skin, and essential for collagen production which is required to keep the skin smooth, firm and plump. The bright red colour of tomatoes is due to the presence of lycopene, an antioxidant that helps to fight skin ageing caused by over exposure to the sun. In fact, lycopene improves skin’s natural SPF (although it’s not a replacement for sunscreen!). The body best absorbs lycopene when the tomatoes are cooked and eaten with dietary fat such as olive oil.
Packed with omega-3 fatty acids, which strengthen the skin cell membranes, andfacilitate the transport of water and nutrients in, whilst keeping toxins out. Maintaining the health of these membranes is vital for retaining moisture in the skin cells, resulting in plumper, youthful looking skin. Omega-3 fatty acids are also anti-inflammatory in the body, and with inflammation underlying skin conditions such as acne, packing your diet with these good fats can help to keep your skin clear.
Our skin reflects the health of our inner ecosystem, and many skin conditions such as eczema and psoriasis are thought to originate from imbalances in the digestive tract. Fermented foods such as sauerkraut and kefir provide live beneficial bacteria that support good digestive health, aid the elimination of waste and toxins, and allowabsorption of skin-boosting nutrients.
Bursting with a number of antioxidants that protect the skin from damage, helping it to look younger for longer. Blueberries also contain phytonutrients that support circulation within the skin by strengthening the capillaries and blood vessels and keeping them flexible.
For skin-protective antioxidants also try: brightly coloured fruit and veggies such asberries, peppers, green leafy vegetables, beetroot and squash. The more variety in colour the better, as each colour represents a different antioxidant.
Packed with zinc, a mineral that helps to rejuvenate the skin by supporting both collagen production and the renewal of skin cells. Zinc improves the skin’s healing process, aiding it to fight off acne and reduce scarring. Pumpkin seeds also contain selenium, a powerful antioxidant that can help to preserve elastin, which keeps the skin smooth and supple.
Rich in both skin moisturising vitamin E, and biotin, a vitamin necessary to build healthy fats in the skin. These fats keep the skin supple and moist, and form aprotective skin barrier to prevent it becoming flaky and dry. Almonds are also a good plant source of protein, which is the building block of collagen and elastin tissue, and helps to keep skin taut and wrinkle-free.
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