You are what you eat. Not only is your skin affected by the products you put on your body, the condition of your skin is also a reflection of the food you put in your body.
Nobody enjoys waking up with a red, inflamed blemish (or two or three) on their face. The truth is, problem skin isn’t simply something that comes around during your teenage years. According to Glamour UK, “Around 20 per cent of women suffer from acne well into their 20s and 30s, which can be caused by anything from stress to hormone fluctuations and more”.
For those of you who experience frequent breakouts, why not try combining your skin-clarifying products with a clear skin diet?
To get you off to a good start, below are 4 nutrient-rich foods that give you glowing, flawless skin from the inside out:
1) Nuts & Seeds
Instead of reaching for a pack of salty, greasy potato chips - try snacking on almonds instead. Deficiencies in minerals such as zinc and selenium are often linked to problem skin. Nuts and seeds are a great source of minerals that many acne sufferers are lacking. Nuts also contain healthy fats and other nutrients such as Vitamin E, copper, magnesium, calcium and iron which are all essential to skin health and function (Glamour UK).
2) Leafy greens
There’s a reason why we pack our Citrus & Kale Potent C + E Serum and Mask with nutrient-rich, skin-loving leafy green ingredients like kale, spinach and broccoli sprouts. Kale, in particular, contains a full range of vitamins ( A, B complex, C, E & K), as well as potent levels of manganese, calcium, potassium, iron, magnesium, protein, folate and phosphorus (Glamour UK). So when it comes to glowing skin, we say “eat your greens, and wear them too!”
3) Sweet Potatoes
When you’re stressed, your hormone-regulating adrenal gland releases high levels of cortisone, and this imbalance of hormones can result in a nasty pimple or two. The solution? Combat stress and boost your mood by regulating your blood sugar levels. You can do this by eating complex carbohydrates (the healthy vitamin-packed kind) like sweet potatoes. This sweet, tasty alternative to the standard potato takes longer to digest resulting in a slower, sustained release of blood sugar levels over time (Glamour UK). Root vegetables including sweet potatoes and carrots also contain high levels of vitamin A which, when digested, can help improve skin circulation and oxygenation (Health Alicious).
Don’t just add spices to your food for flavor, start adding them your dinner plate for the sake of your skin! Spices contain all of the things that healthy skin craves: high levels of antioxidants, anti-inflammatory agents, and nutrients (Everyday Health).
“Most of us think of fruits and vegetables as antioxidant sources, but surprisingly, herbs and spices pack the most punch” explains Jessica Crescenzi, founder of Beauty Guru NYC in an interview with Forbes.
Are there any other healthy skin foods that you eat every day? Tell us in the comments below.
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This post was originally published in June, 2015 and has been updated for accuracy and comprehensiveness.