You are what you eat – or so we’ve heard over and over again until it makes us want to run out and eat a Big Mac. But there’s a reason celebrities like Angelina Jolie or Gwyneth Paltrow seem to obsess over their macrobiotic-vegan-fermenty things. (All in that order, most likely.) If you eat well, you’re going to look well.
The most obvious place all those good nutrients are going to manifest is in your skin. Samantha Heller, a clinical nutritionist at NYU Medical Center in New York City, says: “Everything you eat becomes a part of not only your inner being, but the outer fabric of your body as well. The healthier the foods are that you consume, the better your skin will look.” So considering throwing these seven food items on your taste buds.
1. Low-Fat Milk
Vitamin A is essential to healthy skin, and dairy products have it in abundance. Experts also recommend low-fat yogurt for its vitamin A and live bacteria cultures. Acidophilus is great for digestive health, which experts think has a big impact on skin.
Omega 3 essential fatty acids are great because they concentrate in the walls of your skin cells to hold in moisture. Salmon is about as good as it’s going to get for a fantastic source of Omega 3. This fish contains properties to help you battle the dangers of excessive sunlight.
Carrots work well for your skin for many reasons. They manage to balance the ph levels of your skin by making it slightly acidic. This helps fend off bacteria. Carrots are also loaded in beta-carotene, which nestles into your skin to give it a more even tone.
4. Whole Wheat Bread
Whole wheat bread is high in the mineral selenium, which is key to protecting the skin against sun damage. At least two clinical trials show that when people had high levels of selenium, their skin cells were less likely to suffer the kind of oxidative damage that can increase the risk of cancer.
5. Green Tea
Green tea can’t be beat for skin health. Nutrition expert Liz Lipski says: “It has anti-inflammatory properties, and it’s protective to the cell membrane. It may even help prevent or reduce the risk of skin cancer.” Green tea is also extremely high in catechins, which are powerful antioxidants that fight skin damage.
Different experts have different opinions on exactly how much water you should drink a day. But no one disagrees that it is a great way to keep your skin hydrated. The reason is simple – if you are dehydrated, you will have drier skin. So drink up!
Think your skin is sagging? Pick up some blueberries at your local market and start popping them like vitamins. Blueberries contain polyphenols. Polyphenols strengthen collagen in your skin and improves its elasticity.
Photo credits: Girl; Milk; Salmon; Carrots; Water; Bread; Green tea; Blueberries. All from Flickr, licensed for commercial use under Creative Commons.