The foods we eat are a crucial factor for growing and maintaining healthy skin. Your skin is a reflection of what you consume.
If you’re eating junk food all the time, you may be starting to experience dry, flaky or breaking out the skin.
In this article, we’ll first discuss the ways our diet leads to common skin problems. And then we will discuss the foods to eat so your skin is healthy.
Can food cause acne?
There’s a growing body of evidence that shows what we eat affects our skin health.
Take for example Acne which is the most prevalent dermatological condition. Acne is a result of excess hormones, sebum, bacteria, and follicular cells.
One study reported that people who ate a typical non-Western are more likely to not experience acne. A standard Western diet has more omega-6 fatty acids compared to omega-3 fatty acids.
Omega-6 fatty acids, according to researchers at the University of Southampton’s The Institute of Human Nutrition, can induce more pro-inflammatory mediators. And this is linked to inflammatory acne development.
Can food cause skin cancer?
Studies on both animals and humans show that diet plays an important role in reducing the risk of skin cancer.
In one 11 year study between 1992 and 2002, researchers investigated how food impacts squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) which is the second most common form of skin cancer.
The results of this long term study were published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.
Researchers found that people who have a dietary pattern of meat and fat are more likely to increase SCC risk compared with people with a fruit and vegetable pattern.
In another study published in the International Journal of Cancer, researchers found something astonishing.
When patients with skin cancer decreased the percentage of their calories from fat to 21 percent and increased their intake of beta-carotene, vitamin C, and fiber, they significantly reduced their risk of non-melanoma skin cancer.
Can food cause skin aging?
If your skin is beginning to sag or you’re experiencing flaky skin, the root cause can most likely be traced back to your diet.
Eating too much sugar can quicken the signs of skin aging.
This is because it enables the “cross-linking” of protein fibers that strengthen and cushions the skin and different parts of the body. Let me explain.
Cross-linking happens when amino acids are connected by glucose and fructose, and results in the production of advanced glycation end products (AGEs). The more AGEs, compounds, our skin experiences increased stiffness and reduced elasticity.
Frying, grilling, and roasting are all some of the cooking processes that lead to higher levels of AGEs.
Foods that can improve skin health
So where does all this leave us? Well, the key is to eat well and healthy foods so that your skin can glow and grow well. Here are some foods for healthy skin:
The benefits of avocado are endless, from heart health to hair strength. But perhaps the most amazing avocado benefit is how it helps to grow, maintain and nourish healthy skin. I’ll explain so read on.
Avocado is rich in many nutrients that help your skin glow and keeping them smooth and soft.
The vitamins in avocados, including Vitamin C and E, also protect your skin cells by keeping your skin hydrated.
It can be used as a face mask to moisturize and nourish the skin. Honey, as an option can be added for added softness. It can be used on all skin types. If you have dry skin, fear not, avocado works like magic to restore your skin to its youthfulness.
Blueberries are packed with loads of vitamins A, C and E. Apart from their bone-strengthening abilities, blueberries also keep our skins in perfect conditions.
Vitamins A (Retinol, retinal, retinol, and retinoic acid – active forms) and E in blueberries help slow down your aging process, prevent UV damage, helps with skin cell production.
This is by stimulating fibroblasts. These are cells responsible for the development of tissues that keep skin firm and healthy in the deep layers of your skin.
Vitamin C has autoxidizing properties that neutralize free radicals. They also help to repair dead skin cells and replace them.
Garlic contains antiviral and antibacterial properties that help the body fight against infections and other toxins that are unwanted in the body.
Additionally, Garlic contains certain compounds that make it perfect to help in the detoxification process. This compound is the Organo-Sulfur Compound.
Garlic also contains compounds that can help to inhibit the production of AGEs so that it decreases skin stiffness and improves skin elasticity.
But there’s even more. Garlic is best eaten raw if you want its full benefits. Make sure you add some crushed or grated garlic to your salad dressing to help detox your body.
Ginger is a root stem that has been used in the traditional medicinal culture of the Chinese and Indians to cure nausea, inflammation and so on.
It provides antioxidants to the body.
Ginger is infused in detox remedies, and as a result, it helps to: “cleanse the body by stimulating digestion, circulation, and sweating. Its digestive actions may serve to cleanse the build-up of waste and toxins in the colon, liver and other organs.”
But that’s not all.
Ginger is rich in antioxidants that help keep block the release of skin aging toxins in the body.
You’ll probably know yogurt is a great source of protein. But what you might not know that yogurt can help reduce the appearance of skin wrinkles and make your skin pores compact.
This is because Greek yogurt or regular yogurt is rich with lactic acid.
Yogurt is the product of heating milk and allowing it to cool to a certain temperature. Then, well-defined bacteria is added and allowed to further produce lactic acid. The lactic acid plays a crucial role in improving your skin’s health.
In general, it’s no secret that our diet has a big impact on our health. The popular saying is right: “you are what you eat.” In this case, since foods impact healthy skin, people can see what you eat from your skin.
The key is to be consistent in eating foods that nourish your body. In addition to the foods we’ve discussed here, add more plant-based foods to your meals.