Healthy glowing skin – we are not all blessed with it
Everybody has heard the old phrase ‘you are what you eat’ – research shows that there is a lot of truth in this saying, not only for our internal organs but also for glowing, healthy skin. In fact, new research also indicates that eating a healthy well balanced diet rich in proteins, vitamins and minerals may have anti-aging benefits. Eating nutritional foods will help develop optimum skin health – as opposed to those foods that may aggravate some skin conditions.
Many people appear to enjoy healthy looking skin that glows with little or no effort on their part – when summer arrives we all long to have great looking skin whilst having to deal with heat and humidity. For some of us summer is one long struggle against the effects of our environment whilst trying to maintain that healthy glow by artificial means.
Image Credit: skincareihub.com
No matter how diligent your skin care routine is the summer often brings unexpected skin blemishes. At this point, it is essential to understand that healthy skin, like a healthy heart, happy mood, and controlled weight, can be achieved with a healthy well balanced diet. Eating properly is much more beneficial than expensive skin products – good health starts on the inside and is reflected on the outside.
Drinking plenty of water will help to flush out any harmful toxins and rejuvenating skin cells. Drinking plenty of plain water will keep skin hydrated and encourage the sweat glands to work more efficiently – this will help prevent clogging of pores and reduce the appearance of blemishes. Carrying a bottle of water will help remind you to drink plenty of this most beneficial of drinks.
Another great way to keep skin hydrated and enjoy many health benefits is to drink plenty of green tea. Green tea is considered by many to be a super food – it is antioxidant rich. Antioxidants have many health benefits – including evening out skin tone, anti-inflammatory properties, flushing out of toxins and infections so reducing the effect and frequency of pimples. Green tea is excellent for brightening skin and helping to develop that healthy glow we all yearn for. It is important to avoid readymade processed green tea that often contains added sugars and unnecessary calories.
Choose whole grains
Almost everyone knows that choosing whole grains is the healthier option for many reasons – however not everyone realises that the fibre in whole grain products contains selenium – a natural remedy for the treatment of acne. Refined carbohydrates generally contain high levels of sugar and few health benefits. Choosing whole grains at least three times a day will promote healthy skin and is easy to do with the wide variety of whole grains available including brown rice and pasta, quinoa, barley, oats, millet, or whole grain breads and pastas.
Carrots and sweet potatoes
Carrots provide healthy amounts of vitamin A – essential for healthy skin. Vitamin A will reduce the number of dead cells produced by the skin meaning less risk of pores clogging and reducing the incidence of blemishes. Carrots are portable and make great snacks at any time.
The pumpkin-colored hue of sweet potatoes is an indication of their beta-carotene content – beta-carotene is known to have protective qualities for the skin, reducing the damaging effects of sun exposure.
A number of studies appear to indicate that acne sufferers have lower levels of stomach acids; this in turn may lead to a bacterial imbalance in the gut. Using probiotic products can help normalise bacterial levels in the digestive tract and so help control acne.
Probiotics containing healthy bacteria can re-balance pH levels in skin, which helps prevent the build up of oil and increase overall immunity.
Nuts and seeds
Nuts and seeds have many health benefits, they are excellent sources of vitamin E known to be extremely beneficial for skin care – the vitamin E found in nuts and seeds will promote skin renewal and protect facial tissue. Vitamin E is also recognised as being beneficial in reducing the appearance of scars and the aging of skin cells. An excellent way of adding seeds to your diet is by sprinkling sunflower seeds over salad.
Purple or deep red foods
Foods such as beets, pomegranates, red grapes, blueberries, acai berries, or purple kale contain high levels of antioxidants and promote cell renewal and clear pores. The pigment that gives these foods their deep colour contains anthocyanins – the source of the antioxidants.
Blueberries are another one of the so-called super food, probably containing the highest levels of antioxidants – other benefits of antioxidants include the targeting of free radicals, which in turn reduces damage to skin cells. Blueberries are also an excellent source of soluble and insoluble fibre, Vitamins C and E, manganese and riboflavin. Protecting skin cells from damage and breakdown will lead to younger looking skin for a longer period.
Salmon and oily fish
Oily fish, including salmon, contain high levels of omega-3 fatty acids that may reduce clogging of pores and inflammation of skin – a healthy well balanced diet will include eating fish at least two or three times a week.
Cucumbers have high water content and make excellent skin cleansing products. Cucumbers are also high in fibre and vitamin C – beneficial in reducing puffiness and inflammation of the skin. Cucumber slices are not just for refreshing the eyes – they can be used on the whole face.
Strawberries are a natural source of alicylic acid – known to be effective in treating acne and contained in many skin care products. Consuming strawberries regularly may help clear acne, and improve skin tone and condition. Using a strawberry facemask when an outbreak of acne or pimples occurs may provide just the cure you need.
Turkey has a high concentration of zinc, this mineral helps maintain collagen levels and elastin fibres, – and this promotes firmness and elasticity in the skin. Choosing turkey is a healthy option at any time – it is low in fat and contains serotonin, a known mood booster. Try to avoid processed or pre-packed meat that may contain added sugars and salts.