Now that the cold weather is really setting in, it’s important to look after your skin.
There are several vitamins, minerals and other nutrients essential for keeping your skin healthy over the cold months, however these are essential all year round if you want your skin to glow and be healthy.
Your skin is a powerful indicator as to the state of your body’s health.
Dry skin, oily skin, wrinkles, acne and patchy skin are all signs that the body isn’t performing optimally on the inside.
Our mission is to provide you with both insightful information and evidence-based content so we have narrowed down our top vitamins, nutrients and natural foods for healthy skin.
It’s not just about what we DO need to put into our bodies, but also about what NOT to take into your body.
Saturated fats, lots of sugar and lots of salt are all bad for the body in general and also have a negative effect on the skin.
Alcohol consumption and smoking are also very bad for the body and can cause skin to look dull and grey.
Vitamin A is an essential vitamin for healthy skin as it helps to repair the skin.
This is one of the reasons that sufferers of acne are often encouraged to increase vitamin A intake.
If your skin is dry or scaly, it could be an indication that you are lacking in vitamin A and should increase your intake.
People who suffer from skin problems such as psoriasis are often prescribed with a topical form of vitamin A to help regulate skin cell growth and prevent build up of cells, which can cause flaky scales.
Vitamin A however is also powerful for anti-ageing; it can help to reduce the appearance of wrinkles and other signs of ageing such as age spots.
To increase your vitamin A intake naturally, make sure you consume plenty of eggs, carrots, pumpkin seeds and green leafy vegetables such as kale, cabbage and spinach.
Most people are aware that vitamin is one of the essential vitamins for your skin, as it is marketed by many beauty companies as a key ingredient in many moisturisers.
Vitamin E is one of the strong antioxidants that helps to fight free radicals in the body. These free radicals are responsible for many of the causes of premature skin ageing.
So vitamin E helps to prevent wrinkles, age spots, lines and stretch marks especially when applied to the skin, however eating vitamin E rich foods helps too. Include green leafy vegetables, wheat germ, sunflower seeds, olives, almonds and peanuts in your diet regularly.
Vitamin B Complex
The B vitamins are vital for healthy skin for various reasons.
Vitamin B1 promotes good circulation, which helps the skin’s blood supply, keeping skin looking fresher and preventing dryness..
If you are taking birth control pills then it is likely you are low in vitamin B1.
Vitamin B3 also contains niacin which helps to prevent acne.
Vitamin B1 is found naturally in eggs, raisins and nuts and you can find B3 is in carrots, tomatoes and broccoli.
Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant and so can help reduce the signs of ageing.
Importantly vitamin C stimulates collagen production, which is important to keep skin supple.
Vitamin C is abundant in most fruits, however fruit may not be a suitable snack if you suffer from diabetes. Choose vegetable sources high in vitamin C such as cucumber, broccoli, cauliflower, tomatoes and Brussels sprouts.
Silica is one of the trace minerals which reinforces the connective tissues within the body.
It also helps to heal wounds on the skin and is essential for promoting healthy skin.
A reduction in silica in the body reduces the skin’s elasticity and results in dry, inflexible skin that looks dull.
Plenty of natural foods contain silica, including green vegetables, strawberries, cucumber, garbanzo beans, asparagus, mango and rhubarb.
Zinc is another mineral that is great for the skin, and it is particularly useful for people suffering from acne.
It has been suggested that acne can be caused by zinc deficiency.
Zinc contributes to the body’s ability to regulate oil production in the skin and is also thought to help control hormones that can be responsible for the onset of acne.
The immune system also relies on zinc for its function and so it is important for helping to fight off illnesses of diseases that threaten healthy skin.
Foods rich in zinc include eggs, oysters, ginger, pumpkin seeds, oats, Brazil nuts and pecans.
Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Omega-3 fatty acids have been proven to help people who suffer with inflamed skin, as well as helping to combat white and blackhead spots.
Essential fatty acids are important to help your skin repair itself and help to keep it moisturised naturally without applying creams. Omega-3 can help to keep your skin supple and flexible.
The body doesn’t produce its own omega-3 and other essential fatty acids (EFAs) so you have to obtain them from your diet.
Cold water fish like salmon and mackerel are great sources, but if you prefer plant based sources then eat plenty of flaxseeds and Chia seeds.
This antioxidant mineral gives tissue in the body its elasticity, especially skin, so it’s an important component to help keep skin supple.
Selenium also helps to protect cells, including skin cells, from free radicals that are linked to cancer.
It can protect the skin from harmful UV rays and could play a vital role in helping to protect the body against skin cancer.
Good sources of selenium include eggs, Brazil nuts, tuna, salmon, and brown rice.
Just three or four Brazil nuts daily gives your body all the selenium it needs.
5 Natural Foods For Healthy Skin
Remember, 'you are what you eat’. Eating a poor diet shows very quickly on the skin through oiliness, spots, acne and dull colouration.
What natural foods promote clear and healthy skin?
This vegetable from the cruciferous family is rich in antioxidants, including all-important skin nutrients vitamin C and vitamin E.
The vitamin C content of broccoli promotes healthy collagen production, which is important for healthy, supple skin.
The vitamin E works to protect the skin from damage and protects against UV rays.
Almonds are one of the highest natural sources of vitamin E.
A good way to get them in your diet is to eat almonds as a healthy snack between meals or add chopped or sliced nuts to your yoghurt and cereals.
Eating raw carrots can help your skin look brighter and glow.
Carrots contain high levels of beta-carotene, a strong antioxidant that is transformed into vitamin A once it’s in your body.
It helps repair skin tissues and offers protection against harmful UV rays. You can east raw carrot sticks as a healthy snack throughout the day.
Pumpkin seeds are known as a skin superfood, mainly because they are rich in zinc which we have noted is important for healthy skin.
Zinc promoted collagen production, protects your cell membranes and also promotes renewal of skin cells. It also helps to heal skin wounds quickly.
Although water is not actually a food, we have included it because it is such an important part of healthy skin.
Water helps to flush out toxins and hydrates the body, which is important for supple, healthy looking skin. Make sure you drink at least 8 glasses a day.
Other fabulous foods to boost the vitamins and nutrients that will benefit your overall health, including your skin, include avocados, oily fish, green tea and dark chocolate.
Remember that your diet has a big impact on the health of your skin.
With your comments we’d love to continue the conversation.
How do you look after your skin?
Do you have any top tips to boost your skin’s health?