By: Eileen Guo
Perhaps nowhere is the common refrain “You are what you eat” more clearly reflected than in your skin. The body’s largest organ — your skin — basically tells a tale of the foods you feed your body. So do more than apply the right creams and serums.
Start with Fruits and Vegetables
Fruits and vegetables are full of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants, which give them their brilliant colors. Eating a wide array of colorful fruits and vegetables will provide the necessary protection against cellular oxidation and the production of cancer cells.
When you consume sugary food, the sugar in your bloodstream attaches to proteins like collagen and elastin fibers. This process, called glycation, forms harmful new molecules. This is important to note because collagen and elastin fibers keep skin firm and elastic. Once damaged, those fibers become hard, brittle and dry. What does this mean for your skin? This glycation process can actually age our skin, causing wrinkles, age spots, uneven skin tone and other negative effects to your skin.
Get Your Vitamins In
A nutritious diet is essential to the maintenance of overall health and radiant skin. Consuming certain vitamins, minerals and other beneficial compounds is one of the best ways to improve the look and feel of your skin.
Here are several universally-recognized essentials and a few of their common sources:
• Vitamin A: Cod liver oil, cream, butter and egg yolks
• Zinc: Liver, red meat, seafood, shellfish and pumpkin seeds
• Vitamin C: Citrus fruits, bell peppers, dark leafy greens and broccoli
• Omega-3 fatty acids: Salmon, tuna, walnuts, olive oil and flax seeds
• Biotin: Egg yolks, liver, swiss chard, almonds and walnuts
• Selenium: Chicken, beef, pork, cheese, sunflower seeds, brown rice, tuna and spinach
• Silica: Leeks, green beans, garbanzo beans, strawberries