In this article, I will be sharing with you some of the best foods for beautiful skin or eating habits that can help your skin immensely. Nutrition is vital for health. Not only is your food and the way you eat them affect your health, but they also affect your skin. Unhealthy skin is damaging to your health as it is to your appearance. Every individual wants radiant, sulky and beautiful skin.
While it is a general practice to nourish the skin with oils, creams and moisturizers, it helps a lot to safeguard the health of your skin with healthy eating. Healthy, radiant skin starts from within. Scientific evidence shows that what you eat significantly affects the health and ageing of your skin.
Let’s consider the following six best foods for beautiful skin.
Vegetables are rich sources of minerals and vitamins which are beneficial for health. Certain vegetables are of immense benefit to the health of the skin. They include dark green vegetables such as spinach, kale, broccoli, string beans and other coloured vegetables such as carrot, bell peppers are rich sources of vitamin A. Vitamin A is an antioxidant that promotes skin cell rejuvenation. It contributes to reducing the scars from bruises, stretch marks, and pimples. Yellow and green peppers are rich in antioxidants called carotenoids that help to decrease your skin’s sensitivity to the sun and reduce the appearance of fine lines around the eyes. Tomatoes are rich in lycopene, which is also a powerful antioxidant that protects the skin from ultraviolet damage.
How many portions of vegetables do you need: Nutrition experts recommend including 2 to 3 servings of vegetables every day. An example of a serving of vegetables is 1 cup of chopped carrot, 1 cup of cooked spinach, ½ cup of cooked string beans. As much as possible, have plenty of vegetables every day. Also, you can replace unhealthy snacks with vegetables. See how.
Fruits such as oranges, kiwi, tangerines, pineapples, grapefruit, lime, lemon, etc. are rich sources of vitamin C. People who eat foods rich in vitamin C have less dry skin than those who don’t. Many fruits including red grapes, strawberries, cherries, pears, guava, oranges, mango, watermelon, pawpaw are rich in antioxidants which help to shield your skin from free radicals which cause damage to cells.
How much of fruits do you need: One or 2 medium-size oranges, or one and a half cup of diced watermelon, mango or pineapple is considered adequate.
3. Fatty fish
Fatty fish, such as sardines, mackerel, salmon and herring, are superb foods for healthy skin. They’re rich sources of omega-3 fatty acids, which are vital for maintaining skin health. Omega-3 fatty acids help to keep skin thick, supple, and moisturized. It helps to reduce inflammation and makes your skin less sensitive to the harmful ultraviolet rays from the sun. When the skin is deficient in this essential fatty acid, the skin becomes dry and flaky. Fatty fish also provides vitamin E; important antioxidants that help to protect your skin against damage from free radicals and inflammation. The high-quality protein provided by fatty fish helps in maintaining the strength and integrity of your skin. Additionally, fatty fish provides zinc; a mineral of importance for reducing inflammation, production of new skin cells and maintenance of the skin health. If you are deficient in zinc, you could experience skin inflammation and delay in wound healing.
4. Beans as one of the best foods for beautiful skin
Beans provide a rich amount of fibre, proteins, magnesium, iron, and vitamins that offer many health benefits. The nutrients in beans help to neutralise the damaging effect of free radicals and compounds thereby protecting your skin and damaging signs. Amino acids from the proteins are used in maintaining and producing new tissues, such as bone, muscle, hair and the skin. Soybeans contain isoflavones, which have been shown to improve collagen, skin elasticity, and reduce skin dryness, as well as protect the skin from UV damage.
Varieties of beans include lima beans, red beans, kidney beans, black-eyed beans, sugar beans, soybeans, white beans, brown beans, black beans etc.
How much of beans should you eat?
Nutrition experts recommend that beans should be eaten regularly. This means including beans dish in your menu about 2 to 3 times a week.
Nuts are rich in vitamins and minerals such as copper, zinc, vitamin A, C and E. Your skin will benefit a lot from the anti-oxidant properties of vitamins A, C and E. Therefore nuts help to contribute to a glowing, smoother looking skin. Examples of healthy nuts are peanuts, almonds, walnuts, and cashew nuts. Walnuts are an exceptionally good source of essential fats, zinc, vitamin E, selenium and protein; all of which help your skin to stay healthy.
How much of nuts should you eat?
Because nuts contain a high amount of fats and therefore high calorie, it is advisable to eat them in moderation. About 10 grams of nuts per day is adequate; these correspond to 15 halves of walnuts, 12 almonds, 10 cashew nuts, 3 tablespoons of peanuts and 9 pecans. The calories provided by these portions are less than 200.
6. Dark chocolate
Dark chocolate is a product of cocoa and it is rich in minerals, such as iron, magnesium, and zinc. The cocoa in dark chocolate contains antioxidants called flavonoids, which provide loads of health benefits. The antioxidant works on your skin to make it thicker, more hydrated and well-nourished. It helps the skin to be less rough and scaly and less sensitive to UV. It enables your skin to have a better blood flow thereby enhancing a problem-free complexion.
Additionally, dark chocolate is an excellent skin-detoxifier. It clears off dead skin cells while allowing the new, soft, fresh skin to shine through.
Although dark chocolate contains beneficial antioxidants and minerals, it is usually high in sugar and fat. The fat in chocolate of cocoa is in the form of cocoa butter; a saturated and unhealthy fat.
Therefore, you should limit the consumption of dark chocolate to a modest amount to avoid unwanted calories through fats, and sugars. You don’t want to undermine your efforts in accessing the best foods for beautiful skin.
What amount of dark chocolate should you eat?
While there is no specific expert recommendation for dark chocolate that a person should eat, approximately 20-30g is suggested. Amounts higher than this suggested quantity may result in you consuming too many calories than you need. Dark chocolate with higher percentages of cocoa solids usually has less sugar but more fat. More cocoa also means more flavanols, therefore choose dark chocolate that includes at least 70 per cent of cocoa solids. Alternatively, you can use cocoa powder in beverages. You will derive the same benefits for cocoa powder as you will from dark chocolate. However, ensure that your choice of cocoa powder is from a credible source.
In addition to the food tips discussed above, drink plenty of water every day. Drinking enough water will:
- Improve your skin tone as your body will have enough water to flush out toxins thereby giving you a healthy skin
- Prevent your skin from aging prematurely
- Help your skin to heal faster and easily from wounds
- Help to prevent acne by providing a good balance between the oil and water content on your skin and especially preventing excess oil secretion on your face
- Help your skin to be firm
- Maintain the pH Balance of your skin.
Follow experts’ recommendation for the amount of water you need to drink everyday as well as the strategy to effectively achieve this.
What you eat can significantly affect your skin health. Make sure you’re getting enough essential nutrients to protect your skin. Choosing some of the best foods for beautiful skin discussed here are great ways to keep your skin healthy, strong, and attractive.