WHICH FOODS ARE BEST FOR THE SKIN?



Everyone has a favourite face cream or treatment, but the secret to glowing, beautiful, healthy skin actually starts on the inside! Eat the right balance of foods and you will feed your skin the vital nutrients to help keep it soft, supple and blemish-free.

The best starting point for healthy looking skin is to eat plenty of foods that are rich in vitamin C. Foods such as blackcurrants, blueberries, broccoli, guava, kiwi fruits, oranges, papaya, strawberries and sweet potatoes all help to produce collagen that strengthens the capillaries that feed the skin.

Also,make sure you are getting enough omega-3 and omega-6 oils - both of which are essential fatty acids. You will find omega-3 in oily fish, but plant sources like flax seeds and flax oil make excellent alternatives. For omega-6 try safflower, sunflower and corn oils.

Eating foods that contain sulphur can help to keep skin smooth - garlic and onions are ideal for this - although a bit smelly.

Choose foods that are rich in vitamin E, such as almonds, avocado, hazelnuts, pine nuts and sunflower and corn oils. Vitamin E is a strong antioxidant and will help to protect your skin from the damaging effects of free radicals.

Zinc-rich foods, such as wheat germ, liver, pumpkin seeds, sardines and oysters, help to repair skin damage and keep it soft and supple.

Foods rich in vitamin A help new skin to grow. Liver, eggs, milk and oily fish are good sources along with fortified cereals and margarines.

Eat a few dried apricots every day. They're full of iron to help improve your skin tone. So are sesame seeds - try adding them to cereals and muesli.

Don't forget to drink plenty of water to rehydrate your skin - aim for eight glasses a day. Tea, coffee and juices will count, but for really great skin stick to plain water and don't smoke!

Of all the B vitamins vital for great skin, vitamin B2 or riboflavin helps your skin glow. Best sources include beef, cheese, eggs, liver and Marmite.

Finally, once you make changes to your diet, don't expect an overnight miracle. It takes six weeks for new skin to emerge up to the surface, so the visible benefits from dietary changes will take just as long. So it's never too soon to start.

Foods that can help with problem skin

Is your skin very dry? Dry, rough skin combined with coarse, dry and brittle hair (as well as tiredness) can be a sign of an underactive thyroid, so if you're worried, check it out with your GP. But for general dry skin problems, try increasing your intake of foods rich in beta-carotene (such as yellow and red peppers and dark green leafy vegetables such as spinach) and increasing your intake of omega-3-rich oils. In addition, consider adding a teaspoon of flax oil to salad dressings or sprinkle some flax seeds on your cereal daily.

Is your skin itchy? Get some relief by opting for foods high in B vitamins, such as eggs, fish, lentils, nuts and whole grains. B vitamins improve poor circulation, which is sometimes associated with itchiness.

Is your skin oily? Cut down on processed and junk food as well as foods high in sugar, such as cakes and biscuits as well as hard fats. Dip bread in olive oil or hemp seed oil for a tasty treat instead of using butter.

Do you suffer from acne? Try selenium-rich foods, such as Brazil nuts, cashew nuts, fresh tuna, sunflower seeds, walnuts and wholemeal bread. Combine with vitamin E for the best effect.

For related articles click onto the following links:
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HOW TO GROW AVOCADO FROM SEED
HOW TO LOSE WEIGHT BY EATING FRUIT AND NUTS
WHAT ARE THE BEST FOODS TO EAT WHEN PREGNANT?
WHAT IS FIBER?
WHICH FOODS ARE BEST FOR THE SKIN?
WHY DON'T WE VALUE OUR FOOD ANYMORE

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