If you want healthy, glowing skin we need to start focusing on what we put on our plate just as much as what we put on our face!
Although there are many factors that contribute to keeping our skin healthy such as genetics, age, hormones & your skincare regime, diet is an important factor that is often overlooked.
Our skin is the largest organ in our body & needs adequate nutrients to nourish it. A healthy diet has not only been linked to reducing the appearance of aging & improving acne but there is also interesting new research showing the role our gut microbiome plays in our skin health.
Here are my four favourite nutrients to help you support the health of your skin:
Antioxidants are compounds in food that destroy free radicals. Free radicals damage other cells in our body & have been linked with premature aging. Diets rich in antioxidants have been associated with a lower likelihood of wrinkles so load up on the fruits & vegetables which are the best sources of antioxidants. Different coloured fruits & vegetables contain different antioxidants so try & eat a variety of fruits & vegetables every day!
Fats Healthy fats such as omega 3 fatty acids help to reduce inflammation in the body & are needed for healthy cell membranes. A deficiency in healthy fats can lead to dry skin, rashes, eczema & dandruff. Eat oily fish at least 2-3 times a week & regularly include extra virgin olive oil, avocado, nuts & seeds in your diet.
The GI or Glycaemic Index of food tells you how quickly a food increases our blood glucose levels over a period of time. There is evidence to suggest that eating a low GI diet can help to reduce the signs of aging. Research also shows that high GI, processed foods such as cakes, lollies, low fibre breakfast cereals, white bread, pastries & sugary drinks can worsen acne. Swap high GI carbohydrates for low GI alternatives such as oats, wholegrain bread & cereals, brown rice, quinoa, lentils, legumes & chickpeas.
Staying hydrated is essential for healthy skin. Everyone’s hydration needs are different depending on your body size, activity levels & medical conditions. A good way to tell if you are drinking enough water is to check the colour of your urine. If it is dark, you are not drinking enough water. If you are well hydrated, your urine should be a pale, straw yellow colour. Water is a great choice however if you don’t like water, caffeine-free herbal teas can be a good alternative.
Start nourishing your skin today & try our delicious smoothie recipe which contains antioxidant-rich berries, low GI oats & chia seeds which are packed full of healthy fats.
- 1 cup blueberries
- 1 cup strawberries
- 1 banana
- ¼ cup rolled oats
- 2 cups of almond milk
- 2 tbsp chia seeds
Method Put all ingredients into a blender & blitz until combined.
Article by Dietitian, Nutritionist & Owner of Project Nutrition, Ebony Crameri