Often when we hear the word diet, we immediately envision carrot sticks, bunches of celery, and zero carbs. Thankfully, these old notions have been undergoing a radical makeover in recent years. Dieticians and doctors are erasing misconceptions about what constitutes a healthy diet and taking a more holistic approach which is having beneficial effects of on our health. Today, they recommend a well rounded healthy diet, filled with whole foods and a variety of nutrients consumed in moderation to help us maintain our health. Besides improving our immune systems and having more energy, a proper diet can have some surprising positive side effects on our skin.
And who doesn’t want to look their best?
Whether we are fighting breakouts, dry skin, or just want to enhance our natural glow, scroll through the following 5 diet habits to help our skin stay healthy and radiant:
Eat a colorful variety of veggies. Celebrity esthetician, Joanna Vargas recommends that we eat a wide variety of different colored vegetables at every meal. These power foods supply our skin with healthy fats and phytonutrients which promote anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. Vargas also advises that we try to sneak in a bit of avocado everyday, even if it is just in a smoothie.
Treat yourself with dark chocolate. Everyone enjoys a sweet occasionally and chocolate is a go to favorite for many of us. Thankfully, dark chocolate combines cocoa flavanols, plant compounds, and antioxidant properties that hydrate our skin and improve circulation. One study found that women who consumed a high flavanol cocoa powder drink over the course of 12 weeks displayed smoother skin and less scaliness when compared to others who didn’t get the chocolate. Lisa Drayer, health and nutrition expert, suggests that we keep portions to 1 ounce, or around 150 calories, to receive all the skin benefits without harming our waistlines.
Harness the power of essential oils. This is a natural way to improve the appearance and vitality of our body’s largest organ, the skin. Essential oils are chalk full of natural properties that can help our skin stay hydrated, clear blemishes, alleviate rashes, and act as a innate astringent. There are a variety of oils available, but if used correctly they can help our skin glow and solve bigger problems, such as aging, eczema, and psoriasis without relying on chemicals.
Go fish. Surprisingly, fish is a great food for our skin. Fish, such as salmon, mackerel, sardines, and tuna are loaded with essential fatty acids. If you can’t stomach eating a lot of fish, you can also find essential fatty acids in almonds, hazelnuts, and flaxseeds. These foods include omega-3 and omega-6 which work wonders on reducing inflammation. Nicholas Perricone, a dermatologist, said, “Inflammation triggers the cells to clog the pore, causing acne. It also leads to wrinkles down the line.”
Stay hydrated. We have all heard our health teachers and parents encourage us to drink eight glasses of water. While experts are on the fence about how much water we really need to consume, they do admit that proper hydration can fend off breakouts, reduce the signs of aging, and hide fine lines. We should aim to spread our water intake out over the course of a day, as opposed to guzzling it all down at once, because our body can only absorb so much water at a given time.
What tried and true diet habits for healthy skin do you use or recommend?