10 Foods for Healthy, Beautiful Skin
By Stacey Feintuch
Like they say, "You are what you eat." Cliché, yes. True, indeed. Since the skin is our largest organ, it's no surprise that it is the first part of your body to show nutrient deficiencies.
Want to know where to start? We've rounded up a list of some foods that will keep your skin radiant. Remember, though, that instead of eating specific foods for healthy skin, it’s important to consume a diet that's healthy overall.
The Mayo Clinic suggests eating plenty of fruits and vegetables, along with low-fat or fat-free dairy products and whole-grain pasta and bread—extra points if you add seeds, nuts and beans to your meals. And, of course, try to limit sweets and drink plenty of water, too.
Here are the best foods for skin.
Kiwi will give you tons of vitamin C. Vitamin C produces elastin and collagen, which give your skin its elasticity. Collagen breaks down as you get older and causes wrinkles. Vitamin C counteracts this process. Kiwi also boasts a lot of water, which helps get rid of toxins.
Salmon—and other fatty fish such as mackerel, tuna and trout—will improve the overall condition and appearance of your skin. That's all thanks to its array of nutrients. Omega-3 fatty acids are healthy fats that help reduce inflammation. Omega-3s also hydrate and nourish the skin, making fish a great source of oil for skin (without clogging your pores). Plus, salmon's vitamin D and niacinamide reduce your risk of skin cancer. The niacinamide also helps keep skin hydrated.
This fruit, which is synonymous with summer, is loaded with water to hydrate your skin. Plus it boasts vitamin C, which helps your skin's elasticity. And it provides antioxidants that prevent signs of aging.
Want to fight wrinkles? Then eat vitamin C-rich peppers. They also contain vitamin E (which helps repair damaged skin), vitamin A (which keeps skin moist) and carotenoids (which decrease the skin's sensitivity to the sun). People who ate more green and yellow vegetables had fewer facial wrinkles than those who ate less, according to a study in the British Journal of Nutrition.
To protect your skin against sun damage, chomp on some tomatoes. They provide the bright red pigment that is naturally found in the skin, called lycopene, says the Mayo Clinic. Lycopene, which is found in higher levels in cooked, processed tomatoes, protects against the sun's harmful ultraviolet radiation. Women who ate lycopene-rich tomato paste in olive oil had less DNA damage and visible redness than those who just ate olive oil, said a study published in the British Journal of Dermatology.
Eat oysters to help wounds heal and prevent scarring. Oysters contain the important trace metal zinc, which promotes wound healing, according to the University of Maryland Medical Center. Oysters can help prevent wounds from breaking down and keeps skin strong during healing. You can also get zinc from nuts, lobster, beans and crab.
Berries like strawberries, blueberries, blackberries and raspberries offer antioxidants, which help protect the skin from the sun's damaging effects. Eating these foods also may help prevent signs of aging skin like dryness and wrinkles. A note: Consuming fruits and vegetables raw and fresh offers more antioxidants than when they're cooked.
Beauty buffs know that you can apply cucumbers to your face to help relieve puffiness under the eyes. Eating them is beneficial, too. They help hydrate the skin because they're made mostly of water.
The tropical fruit contains bromelain, which is thought to fight inflammation. Lessening inflammation can improve your skin's appearance and may make you feel better if you're suffering from sunburn.
Citrus fruits like grapefruits, lemons, limes and oranges boast nutrients like vitamin C that help keep skin youthful looking.
Remember, while these foods are great choices, they don't replace sunscreen and other sun protection measures.