5 Foods For Healthy Skin
You know what they say... beauty is more than skin-deep.
And great skin is more than skin-deep, too. Getting your skincare products (natural is best, obvs) and routine right is really important but, ultimately, if you’re not putting healthy foods into your body, your skin will show it.
Obviously, a healthy balanced diet containing lots of fresh foods, fruits and vegetables, and wholefoods is what we’re aiming for, but here I want to share a few special additions you can make to your diet to add that little extra boost…
Chia seeds are full of vitamins and nutrients, including Vitamin E (a powerful antioxidant that combats inflammation and wrinkles), Omega 3 fats (combat acne, wrinkles, help promote smooth skin and also even keep your hair and nails in good shape too), Zinc (thought of as a "miracle anti-aging" mineral), and Magnesium (helps to prevent uneven hormone levels that can lead to bad skin).
You can make chia seeds into a delicious pudding (the texture is somewhere between a mousse and a jelly - interesting and yummy!), or you can add to porridge, smoothies, etc.
Almonds are rich in Vitamin E, a natural antioxidant that supports collagen production and provides anti-inflammatory benefits for the body. Almonds also contain a large amount of plant-based protein, rich in amino acids that are needed to support collagen growth and strengthen the body.
They’re also alkaline-forming when eaten raw. Alkaline foods support detoxification and healthy pH levels, which prevent inflammation and acidity within the body. Lastly, almonds are rich in the B vitamin biotin, which is needed to strengthen the nails and hair.
Add almonds - chopped or whole - to your morning porridge, granola or muesli, or simply eat them as a yummy snack.
Cacao can help to prevent premature ageing due to the presence of polyphenol antioxidants, which belong to the same group of antioxidants as green tea and red wine. These anthocyanins (found in dark coloured fruits) and catechins (found in green tea) protect our cells from premature oxidation or destruction and can keep us looking and feeling younger longer.
In 2006 the Journal of Nutrition found that women who drank cacao with at least 326 mg of flavonals a day had better skin texture, improved micro-circulation, increased oxygen saturation, and improved skin hydration than those didn’t.
Simply stir some cacao powder in your morning smoothie to get these great benefits. Or perhaps create your own raw chocolates (there are loads of recipes online), or mix up a delicious and nutritious raw cacao hot chocolate - wonderful on chillier days.
The baobab fruit is rich in Vitamin C, which helps your body form collagen and elastin, two structural proteins that give your skin support and elasticity. Baobab fruit has also been shown to possess strong antioxidant properties, helping to protect skin from damage.
I first came across baobab on a visit to Cam Expo a few years ago and I absolutely fell in love. It has a mild fruity flavour and is naturally sweet. In its powdered form, you can easily add this to many different foods, from yoghurt to smoothies, to porridge, and more. You can even add it when making chia seed pudding or raw chocolate.
Technically this is more than one food but I'm grouping them together here because, quite frankly, that's how they fit into my life. Here I'm talking about foods such as spinach, spirulina, broccoli, kale, wheatgrass, alfalfa, etc.
Green foods have an affinity with the liver, and our liver is a major player in the health of our skin. This is because your skin (like your liver) is an organ of elimination and so if your liver isn't functioning effectively, your skin is asked to pick up the slack when it comes to removing toxins, impurities, and waste products from your body... resulting in skin issues such as acne, eczema, etc.
So needless to say, supporting your liver also supports healthy skin. That's why I love a daily greens powder (I get mine from Buy Wholefoods Online) that contains many wonderful plants, vegetables and seeds in one powder. This means that I can simply add a spoonful to my morning smoothie and my liver is looked after for the day.