12 best foods for healthy skin
Nutrition is important for health. An unhealthy diet can damage your metabolism, lead to weight gain and even damage your organs, such as your heart and liver. But what you eat also affects another organ: your skin. The more scientists learn about nutrition and the body, the clearer it becomes that what you eat also influences your skin health and the aging of your skin. This article discusses 12 of the best foods for healthy skin.
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1. Fatty fish
Fatty fish such as salmon, mackerel, and herring are very good for your skin. They are rich sources of omega 3 fatty acids that are important for maintaining healthy skin. Omega 3 fatty acids ensure that your skin remains thick, supple and hydrated. A lack of omega 3 fats can, therefore, lead to dry skin.
The omega 3 fats in fish decrease inflammation, which can cause acne and redness. They can even make your skin less sensitive to the harmful UV radiation from the sun. Some studies indicate that fish oil supplements can prevent inflammation and autoimmune diseases that affect your skin, such as psoriasis and lupus. Vette is also a source of vitamin E, one of the most important antioxidants for the skin. Getting enough vitamin E is essential for protecting your skin against free radical damage and inflammation. This type of seafood is also a source of high-quality proteins, which are necessary for maintaining firm and smooth skin.
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Finally, fish contains zinc, a mineral that is vital for tackling inflammation, the production of new skin cells and overall skin health. Zinc deficiency can lead to inflammation, injuries and delayed wound healing.
In short: Oily fish such as salmon contains omega 3 fatty acids that are anti-inflammatory and hydrate the skin. They are also a good source of high-quality proteins, vitamin E and zinc.
Avocados contain many healthy fats that benefit many functions in your body, including the condition of your skin. It is essential to get enough of these fats for smooth and hydrated skin.
A study among more than 700 women found that high total fat intake – especially the healthy type of fat contained in avocados – was associated with smoother, firmer skin. (1)
There are also indications that avocados contain compounds that can protect the skin from sun damage caused by UV radiation, which can lead to wrinkles and other signs of aging. (2, 3)
Avocados are also a good source of vitamin E, an important antioxidant that helps protect your skin against oxidative damage. Most Americans do not get enough vitamin E through the diet. Vitamin E also appears to be more effective if it is combined with vitamin C.
Vitamin C is also important for healthy skin. Your skin needs it to make collagen, the most important structural protein that ensures healthy and strong skin. Vitamin C deficiency is rare nowadays, but common symptoms are dry, rough and flaky skin that quickly develops bruises. Vitamin C is also an antioxidant that protects the skin against oxidative damage caused by the sun and the environment, which can lead to aging symptoms. Half an avocado (approx. 100 grams) provides 10% of the RDA for vitamin E and 17% of the RDA for vitamin C. Foods like avocados are very beneficial for healthy skin.
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In short: Avocados contain many healthy fats and vitamins E and C, substances that are important for healthy skin. There are also compounds in avocados that protect your skin against sun damage.
Walnuts have all kinds of properties that ensure that they promote healthy skin. They are a good source of essential fatty acids, which are fats that your body cannot produce itself. There is, even more, omega 3 and omega 6 in it than in most other notes. A diet with too many omega 6 fats can have an anti-inflammatory effect, which can also exacerbate skin conditions such as psoriasis. Omega 3 fats, on the other hand, reduce inflammation in your body, including the skin. While omega 6 fats are common in the Western diet, sources of omega 3 fatty acids are much rarer. Because walnuts contain both fats in a good ratio, they can counteract the inflammatory reaction due to an excess of omega 6. Also.
Walnuts contain other substances that your skin needs to function well as a barrier and to stay healthy. A 30-gram portion of walnuts contains 5% of the RDA for zinc, which is essential for the barrier function of your skin, for wound healing and for fighting both bacteria and inflammation ( 4 ). Walnuts also contain a small amount of the antioxidants vitamins E, C, and selenium, plus 4-5 grams of protein per 30 grams.
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In short: Walnuts are a good source of essential fatty acids, zinc, vitamins E and C, selenium and protein – all nutrients that are important to keep your skin healthy.
4. Sunflower seeds
Nuts and seeds are generally good sources of skin nutrients. Sunflower seeds are a good example of this. A 30-gram portion of sunflower seeds contains no less than 37% of the RDA for vitamin E, 32% of the RDA for selenium, 10% of the RDA for zinc and 5.4 grams of protein.
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In short: Sunflower seeds are an excellent source of nutrients such as vitamin E; an important antioxidant for the skin.
5. Sweet potatoes
Some plants contain a nutrient called beta-carotene. It acts like provitamin A, which means that it can be converted into vitamin A in your body. Beta-carotene is found in oranges and vegetables such as carrots, spinach, and sweet potatoes. Sweet potatoes are an excellent source because a portion of 100 grams of baked sweet potatoes contains just as much beta-carotene as almost four times the RDA of vitamin A. Carotenoids such as beta-carotene keep the skin healthy because they work as a natural sunscreen. When you ingest it, this antioxidant is absorbed into your skin where it protects the skin cells from the sun.
This can prevent sunburn, cell death, and dry, wrinkled skin. Interestingly, a large amount of beta-carotene can also give the skin a warm, orange color, which contributes to a healthy appearance. You can add foods like sweet potato in your daily routine diet to make your skin healthy and shiny.
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In short: Sweet potatoes are an excellent source of beta-carotene, a substance that can protect the skin against sun damage.
6. Red, orange and yellow peppers
Just like sweet potatoes, peppers contain a lot of beta-carotene, which your body converts into vitamin. A serving of 150 grams of red pepper contains 92% of the RDA of vitamin A. Peppers is also one of the best sources of vitamin C, which is needed for the production of the protein collagen, which ensures smooth and firm skin. A portion of 150 grams of bell pepper contains no less than 317% of the RDA of vitamin C. A large observational study among women found a link between consuming a lot of vitamin C and a lower risk of wrinkled and dry skin with aging. These 3 kinds of bell peppers are counted in the list of best foods that make your skin healthy.
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In short: Peppers contain plenty of beta-carotene and vitamin C, antioxidants that are both important for your skin. Vitamin C is also needed for the production of collagen, a structural protein that keeps your skin strong.
Broccoli is full of all kinds of vitamins and minerals that are important for the skin, including zinc, vitamin A and vitamin C. It also contains lutein, a carotenoid that behaves like beta-carotene. Lutein protects your skin against oxidative damage, which can cause dry and wrinkled skin. But broccoli also possesses a special substance called sulforaphane, which is known to have some impressive beneficial effects. It would even work against certain types of cancer, including skin cancer. Sulforaphane also offers powerful protection against sun damage. It works in two ways: by neutralizing the harmful free radicals and by using other protection systems in your body.
In laboratory tests, sulforaphane was found to reduce the number of skin cells killed by UV light by as much as 29%, with the protection continuing for up to 48 hours. There are also indications that sulforaphane maintains the level of collagen in the skin. (5)
You can call broccoli queen of the foods that makes skin healthy and shiny.
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In short: Broccoli is a good source of vitamins, minerals, and carotenoids that are important for healthy skin. It also contains sulforaphane, which can help prevent skin cancer and protect against sunburns to the skin.
Tomatoes are a great source of vitamin C and they contain all major carotenoids, including lycopene. Beta-carotene, lutein, and lycopene have been shown to protect the skin from the sun and these substances would also help prevent the formation of wrinkles.
Because tomatoes contain all important carotenoids, they are an excellent food for maintaining healthy skin. It is best to combine carotenoid-rich foods such as tomatoes with fat such as cheese or olive oil. Fat increases the absorption of carotenoids in the body.
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In short: Tomatoes are a good source of vitamin C and all-important carotenoids, especially lycopene. These carotenoids protect the skin against the sun and can help prevent wrinkles.
Soy contains isoflavones, a category of plant substances that can either mimic or block estrogen in your body. Isoflavones are beneficial for various parts of the body, including the skin.
A small study among middle-aged women found that eating soy isoflavones for 8-12 weeks a day reduced fine wrinkles and improved skin elasticity. (7)
In postmenopausal women, soy can help prevent dry skin and collagen production, contributing to smooth and strong skin. These isoflavones not only protect the cells inside your body against damage but also your skin against UV radiation, which can help prevent certain forms of skin cancer.
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In short: Soy contains isoflavones, which can improve wrinkles, collagen production, skin elasticity, and dry skin. They can also protect the skin against damage caused by UV radiation.
10. Dark chocolate
If you need an extra reason to eat chocolate, you will find it here, because the effect of cocoa on your skin is quite phenomenal. After consuming cocoa powder daily for 6-12 weeks, the study participants were found to experience thicker, more hydrated skin. The skin was also slightly less rough and flaky, less sensitive to sunburn and better blood circulation – the latter ensures that more nutrients are transported to your skin.
Another study found that eating 20 grams of antioxidant-rich dark chocolate daily meant that the skin could have more than twice as much UV radiation before it burned. This effect was not present with chocolate with few antioxidants. (8)
Several other studies show similar results, such as improvements in the appearance of wrinkles. It must be mentioned, however, that no significant effects were found in at least one study. Make sure you choose dark chocolate with at least 70% cocoa to optimally benefit from the beneficial effects and minimize the added sugar.
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In short: Cocoa contains antioxidants that can protect the skin against sunburn. These antioxidants can also have beneficial effects on wrinkles, skin thickness, hydration, blood flow, and skin texture.
11. Green tea
Green tea can protect the skin against damage and aging. The powerful compounds in green tea are called catechins and they improve skin health in various ways. Like several other antioxidant-rich foods, green tea can help protect skin from sun damage.
A 12-week study among 60 women found that drinking green tea daily could reduce redness by up to 25% by exposure to the sun. Green tea also improved the moisture content, the degree of roughness, the thickness and the elasticity of the skin. Green tea is, therefore, a very good choice for healthy skin, but do not drink it with milk. There are indications that milk can reduce the influence of antioxidants in tea. (9)
Green tea counted in foods that make metabolism very strong but also keep your skin healthy.
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In short: The catechins in green tea are powerful antioxidants that can protect the skin against sun damage and reduce redness. It can also provide improvement in the moisture content and the thickness and elasticity of the skin.
12. Red wine
Red wine is known for its resveratrol, a substance that comes from the skin of red grapes. Resveratrol is said to have all kinds of beneficial effects on health, including an anti-aging effect.
Laboratory studies indicate that it could also delay the production of harmful free radicals, which damage the skin cells and cause signs of aging. (11, 12)
Unfortunately, there is not much evidence that the amount of resveratrol that you get from a glass of red wine is enough to affect your skin. And because red wine contains alcohol, it has negative effects if you drink too much. It is therefore not advisable to drink red wine especially because of the possible health effects. But if you drink a glass now and then in moderation, then red wine may be a good choice.
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In short: Resveratrol, a famous antioxidant found in red wine, could counteract the aging process in the skin by preventing the formation of harmful free radicals that damage the skin.
The Bottom Line:
What you eat can have a lot of influence on your skin health. Make sure you get enough essential nutrients to protect your skin. The foods from this list are great options to keep your skin healthy, strong and attractive.