Many people focus on the products they put on their skin, like face wash, toner, and moisturizer, to keep it healthy.
Of course, skincare products matter. But if you’ve yet to take into account the foods you eat when it comes to your skin health, you could be overlooking something that is critical to soft, supple, strong skin.
Your dietary choices play a huge role in your skin health. We’ll talk about how food choices contribute to maintaining healthy skin. But first, let’s explore the significance of keeping your skin healthy.
Keeping Your Skin Healthy is Vital
Taking care of your skin is so important because it’s one of your body's largest organs, securing your insides and shielding them from anything harmful. Bacteria, ultraviolet (UV) rays, pollutants, and free radicals are at the top of the list of things that can destroy the integrity of your skin.
Your skin can also communicate necessary information to the brain. For instance, your skin sends an SOS signal to your brain when you get a rash or cut. And once that signal is sent, your skin starts to repair itself.
Finally, healthy skin looks good. It’ll stay that way if you take care of it over the years, helping you to age more gracefully and maintain a youthful look in your golden years.
Healthy skin is central to your health and wellness, and maintaining it should be a top priority.
What You Eat Directly Affects Your Skin Health
Even the best skincare products can’t fend off the negative effects of a bad diet on your skin.
For example, eating a lot of sugary foods can cause your blood sugar to spike. Your body releases high levels of hormones, including insulin-like growth factor one when your blood sugar spikes. This activates your oil glands and when those are in overdrive, you’re more likely to get acne, according to Healthline.
Another example is fats but not in the way you’re probably thinking. A low-fat diet is one of the less obvious causes of chronically dry and irritated skin. Consuming healthy fats found in oily fish, nuts, and seeds helps keep your skin moisturized.
Certain foods provide you with nutrients that support hydrated, radiant skin. The list is lengthy, but here are four to get you started.
Every list of foods that support skin health will include fatty fish. Fatty fish, like salmon, herring, and mackerel are rich in omega-3 fatty acids. Your skin is thicker, more supple, and moisturized when you consume omega-3 fatty acids regularly, according to an article published in Healthline in 2023.
Fatty fish are also a source of zinc and Vitamin E, both of which are integral to protecting your skin from damage and the production of new skin cells.
Broccoli is one of the best greens for skin health. It houses a variety of vitamins and minerals essential to maintaining healthy skin, like Zinc, Vitamin A, and Vitamin C (.
Broccoli also contains lutein, a carotenoid that helps protect your skin from oxidative damage that accelerates wrinkles and dry skin.
Sulforaphane is in broccoli as well, which helps you maintain collagen and protects you from certain skin cancers and sun damage.
Tomatoes are a collagen-rich food that helps you create the amino acids, proline, lysine, and glycine, necessary for healthy skin.
Tomatoes are a good source of Vitamin C and have major carotenoids, like lycopene that help protect your skin from sun damage, wrinkles, and dryness.
If you pair tomatoes with a healthy source of fat, such as cheese or olive oil, you’ll absorb carotenoids better, increasing your chances of experiencing the benefits above.
Eating a bunch of candy and sugary foods isn’t conducive to healthy skin. However, that doesn’t mean you have to ditch your sweet tooth altogether.
Cocoa is a superfood that can improve insulin resistance, relieve high blood pressure, and, you guessed it, better your skin health.
Consuming dark chocolate high in antioxidants, in particular, can result in thicker, more hydrated skin. It can improve the appearance of wrinkles. It can also better your blood flow and enhance the smoothness of your skin.
How to Start Eating For Your Skin Health
After reading up on the benefits of healthy skin and how your diet can play a part in achieving it, the next step is implementing foods in your diet that lend to healthier skin. But what’s the best way to do this?
First, don’t feel like you have to incorporate every food that supports healthy skin all at once. That’s the fastest way to overwhelm yourself, get discouraged, and go back to your old ways of eating.
Instead, put foods that facilitate skin health in your diet slowly. Start with incorporating one food that helps keep your skin healthy into one meal. Stay consistent with this for a while before adding another food to an additional meal.
When you’re eating one food that supports skin health in each meal, strive to put another food choice into play for each meal.
Keep adding more foods helpful to your skin to your diet until you feel comfortable with where you’re at. Everything you eat doesn’t have to be skin-health conscious. However, being mindful of your overall goal of healthy skin whenever you put something in your mouth isn’t a bad habit to have.
Food’s ability to enhance the look, feel, and function of your skin should be at the top of your list of reasons why you love it. Incorporate foods like broccoli, fatty fish, tomatoes, and dark chocolate into your diet, and the result will be glowing, youthful, healthy skin.