Your skin is the largest organ you have, so it should be no surprise that the food you consume has a large effect on its health and appearance. It’s your body’s first defense against air pollution, chemicals, etc. so taking care of your skin needs to be high on your list of priorities.
If you’re tired of having dull, puffy, and even acne-prone skin then it’s time to evaluate what kind of food you are consuming.
Eating a lot of fatty proteins like cheese, red meat, pizza, etc. can really take a toll on your skin. I know these foods are delicious on a Friday night after a long week at work, but is it really worth the dull, puffy skin and bags under your eyes the next day?
The dehydrating effect of caffeine will make your skin more wrinkled and sagging (no, thank you!). Even worse, increased production of cortisol is a side effect of caffeine consumption and that can lead to acne breakouts. So, think twice next time before reaching for that energy drink or an extra shot of espresso at the coffee shop.
It’s no secret that salty foods make you retain water, but did you know that extra salt retention can cause inflammation and premature aging? Next time you want to reach for those chips or salty popcorn, remember how puffy it will make your skin and find a healthier alternative.
Foods like soda, candy, cakes, and cookies will cause your insulin levels to skyrocket and inflammation to escalate. Inflammation is your body’s natural reaction to heal from something that is harming it. This inflammation causes the elastin and collagen in your skin to break down. These are important to your skin’s health because they give your skin strength and elasticity.
Dairy is one of the biggest contributors to increased oil production acne breakouts. This happens because ingesting dairy causes your blood levels of androgen to spike. While finding an alternative for milk is a good start, to really see a difference you need to stay away from all milk products including cheese and yogurt.
The good news is, you don’t have to alter your diet completely to avoid dairy. There are a ton of dairy-free alternatives out there.
Now that you know what foods to avoid, check out this list of foods that can help improve the health of your skin.
Since our bodies are 60-70% water, it makes sense that the more hydrated we are the better our bodies look and feel. Your skin is the largest organ in your body and needs hydration to appear plumper and less wrinkled.
A bonus of staying hydrated is that it flushes out toxins from sugar and other inflammatory foods that you eat. This helps clear up your skin and reduce cravings for those bad foods.
If you’re not a big tomato eater, you might want to reconsider after this. Tomatoes contain all of the major carotenoids and lycopene - both of which contribute to keeping your skin healthy. They are also an excellent source of Vitamin C which promotes collagen production and erases fine lines.
If you’re like me, you don’t need a special occasion to enjoy a sweet dark chocolate treat. You’ve heard it’s healthy for you, but did you know the antioxidants in dark chocolate help keep your skin smooth and hydrated? It even gives you some protection against the sun. How cool is that?! Now you can add this reason to your list of why you need more dark chocolate in the house.
Catechins, an antioxidant found in green tea, has a ton of anti-inflammatory properties and has been found to prevent skin cancer. Consuming two cups of green tea a day can help you avoid skin cancer and protect your skin from the sun’s harmful effects.
Who would have thought that this fall staple packed such a punch for your skin health? If you want smooth and soft skin free of wrinkles, try eating some cooked pumpkin. It has tons of Vitamin A, which you have to have for growing healthy skin cells. Just half a cup has over 400% of the daily recommended value for Vitamin A.
If your skin health is a concern for you, take an inventory of the food you are putting into your body. Before you go drop a bunch of money on expensive skincare products make a few small adjustments to your diet and see the difference it can make.
Don’t feel like you have to completely revamp your diet or get rid of any of these foods entirely. Start by reducing the amount of some foods instead of making any drastic changes. Research and find alternatives for the foods you really can’t live without. Your skin will thank you for it!
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