What To Eat for Fabulous Skin
Omega-3 Fatty Acids are potent anti-inflammatory agents. Proper balance of omega-3 to omga-6 in our diet is mandatory for healthy cell walls. The typical American diet contains 10-20 times more omega-6 than omega-3s, creating an imbalance in which we lose cell (and skin) elasticity. Omega-3s can help battle inflammatory skin conditions such as acne, psoriasis and rosacea. Omega-3 supplementation has been shown to improve overall skin condition and inhibit inflammation due to UV radiation, possibly reducing the risk of skin cancer.
· Try cold water fatty fish: sardines, salmon, mackerel, tuna, anchovies and black cod.
· Plant sources are not as bio-available
· Supplements with a quality fish oil is beneficial
Vitamin A, or retinol is one of the most widely acknowledged nutrients for healthy skin. We know that Vit. A is useful in treating problem skin, it promotes cell turnover, inhibits sebaceous gland activity and is effective in preventing the formation of most common forms of acne. Rough, dry skin is a common sign of a Vit. A deficiency and also rough, raised bumps on the back of the arms.
· Try liver and cod liver oil, sweet potatoes, leafy greens, carrots, butternut squash & apricots
Zinc promotes healthy protein and cell membrane development in the skin, improves wound healing, has anti-inflammatory effects, and protects against UV radiation. Zinc may reduce acne even as effectively as antibiotics due to the fact that acne sufferers have lower levels of Zinc in their blood. Dietary Zinc has been shown to increase vitamin A in the blood, which is likely the reason it helps with acne. Signs of lower Zinc levels are cracks behind the ears, splitting or chipping of nails and blisters on finger tips.
· Try fish, shellfish, pumpkin seeds, nuts, whole wheat & cocoa
Vitamin C is essential for healthy collagen, a protein necessary tor healthy skin. Vitamin C deficiency causes rough dry skin and issues with damaged ski follicles with impaired collagen formation. Diets high in vit. C are associated with better skin appearance, fewer wrinkles, and improved healing and scar formation. It is another anti-oxidant that helps prevent and treat UV-induced damage.
· Try bell peppers, guava, dark leafy greens, broccoli, Brussel sprouts, kiwi, citrus fruits, berries, cilantro, chives, thyme, basil & parsley.
Biotin is a vitamin that is critical for the health of the skin and necessary for proper fatty acid production which protects the cells against environmental damage and water loss. A deficiency of Biotin causes cracks on the feet, hair loss, dermatitis, and scaly/red inflamed skin on the mouth, face and scalp. Dermatitis appears as crusty yellow or white patches on the scalp, behind the ears, and around the face. It can also be the cause of dandruff for some.
· Try egg yolks, liver, swiss chard, romaine lettuce, nuts, carrots, whole wheat, berries, cucumbers, cauliflower & onions.
Vitamin E is a very important antioxidant and anti-inflammatory agent for the skin. About seven days after we consume vit. E, it is secreted on the skin’s surface through sebum, an oily substance that coats the outer layer of the skin to help protect us from environmental damage and UV radiation.
· Try almonds, spinach, turnip greens, chard sunflower seeds, bell peppers, asparagus, collards, kale broccoli, Brussel sprouts and olive oil.
Pantothenic acid (B5)is a potent anti-inflammatory agent and antioxidant that protects the skin. It is essential for cell growth and fat synthesis necessary for cell regeneration. Vitamin B5 may help with a condition known as “chicken skin”. Cracks at each corner of the mouth is a sign of a B5 deficiency.
· Try eggs, cucumber, avocado, asparagus, broccoli, celery, grapefruit, turnip greens, tomato, chard, collards, bell peppers, corn, fish, shellfish, chicken, mushrooms and sweet potatoes.
Seleniumin the diet may be protective against skin cancer. Evidence suggests that rates from cancer are significantly lower in areas of the world where selenium levels in the soil are high, and some clinical trials have shown benefits of dietary selenium in cancer prevention. Also, patients with acne have lower levels of blood selenium and the supplementation of selenium with vitamin E may improve the appearance of acne.
· Try fish, nuts (especially Brazil nuts), shellfish, sunflower seeds & whole grains.
Sulfur is another nutrient necessary for collagen synthesis, which gives the skin its structure and strength. The breakdown of collagen ( or insufficient production of) as we age is one of the major contributors to the development of wrinkles and dietary sulfur significantly affects the production of collagen . Getting enough sulfur in your diet will help maintain collagen production and firmer looking skin. It also is a powerful antioxidant battling cellular damage and is another anti-inflammatory agent.
· Try egg yolks, meat, poultry, fish, garlic, onions, Brussel sprouts, asparagus, kale & sauerkraut.
Silica deficiency diet in animals has been shown to produce poorly formed connective tissue, including collagen. It helps with the formation of hyaluronic acid which helps with the growth of new healthy skin cells and improves hydration. It is necessary for healthy, hydrated, wrinkle-free skin.
· Try, leeks, green beans, garbanzo beans, strawberries, cucumber, mango, celery, asparagus, and rhubarb.
Niacin:Pellagra, the disease of late stage niacin deficiency, causes a variety of skin symptoms such as dermatitis and a dark, scaly rash. Some GI diseases may cause inadequate niacin absorption.
· Try poultry, red fish (tuna & salmon), seeds, green leafy veggies, coffee & tea.
Vitamin K helps keep our skin’s elastin healthy and the ability to spring back and smoothing wrinkles. Inadequate vitamin K may cause premature aging/wrinkles. Vitamin A & D cannot work properly if vitamin K12 is not available and also important in the treatment of acne.
Probiotics:Studies have shown that orally consumed pre and probiotics can reduce inflammation, oxidative stress, the inflammation of acne and other skin conditions. There is also a connection between the overgrowth of negative bacteria in the small intestine and the incidence of acne, suggesting that reestablishing the proper balance of gut microflora may improve acne.
· Try sauerkraut, kimchi & pre/probiotic supplements
H2O: Dehydration is the primary factor in the production of dry and lusterless skin. Water reserves in the skin may be used up quickly as the body tries to conserves water when dehydrated. When the skin loses moisture it becomes dry, brittle & prune-like and it has less capillary circulation which gives the skin its healthy color. Human skin is the tissue that houses the inner workings of the body. Our skin needs H20 all the time due to exposure to the environment and evaporation from perspiration. If water does not reach the skin from the circulation at its base, the rate of skin repair will decrease and dehydrated cells will cover the body. The ultimate dehydration-produced skin problem is scleroderma when the skin is atrophied and scaly like an alligator. At later stages, the skin becomes thin, pale and loses its ability to be elastic.
· For optimal organ health (including the largest organ, the skin) drink half your weight in ounces per day.