It’s never too early (or too late!) to begin prioritizing skincare. Indeed, many women begin noticing changes in the texture, firmness, and overall appearance of the skin while they’re still in their twenties and thirties!
To be sure, some of these changes relate to factors you simply can’t control, such as age and genetics. Many, though, can be attributed to lifestyle. The good news, though, is that you don’t have to resort to costly skin care regimes, painful cosmetic procedures, or dubious gimmicks claiming to offer users eternal youth.
In fact, if you’re looking for the most effective, accessible, and affordable skincare regime around, you need look no further than your own kitchen! To maintain flawless, youthful skin for decades to come, all you need is a healthy diet!
The Role of Diet in Your Skin’s Appearance
Your skin is a living organism. It not only protects your body’s internal systems, but it also nourishes and is nourished by them. Every 28 days, your skin naturally sheds a full layer of cells.
In other words, your skin is constantly in motion, constantly working. Every second of every day, it is absorbing nutrients from the external environment, such as Vitamin D, while filtering contaminants, such as airborne pollutants. At the same time, the nutrients we consume are filtered through the bloodstream and into the skin cells.
This combination of internal and external conditions impacts the health of the skin, affecting, for example, processes of cellular turnover and determining the overall health and appearance of skin cells.
Eating a balanced diet, for instance, can ensure that your skin receives the wide array of nutrients it needs for optimal cellular health and functioning. A diet that includes an array of antioxidants and healthy fatty acids will help your skin cells to retain the fullness, firmness, and vibrancy of youth.
Using your diet to optimize your skin health takes some effort. At a minimum, you will want to have five servings of fruits and vegetables per day, as well as a variety of nuts, legumes, and fats.
For instance, dermatologists recommend that you consume a diet rich in polyphenols, lycopene, vitamin C, vitamin E, and Omega 3 fatty acids to reduce inflammation and oxidative stress.
Dermatologists also emphasize the critical importance of being well-hydrated not only to prevent dryness but also to support cellular health and functioning.
Best of all, dermatologist-approved balanced diets can also greatly enhance your overall health and well-being, which, in turn, will make you feel better, reduce stress, and, potentially, lower inflammation.
For instance, if you have gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), drinking lots of water and eating small, frequent meals filled with fruits, vegetables, and healthy fats can help reduce painful GERD symptoms while keeping your skin looking great.
Lifestyle Changes to Support Skin Health
Small, consistent lifestyle changes can amplify the benefits of a balanced diet for your skin. For example, using gentle exfoliants to trigger a “skin purge” will support cellular turnover and rid the pores of contaminants.
In addition, engaging in daily meditation can help significantly reduce stress, a primary cause of acne and other dermatological challenges.
Mind the Numbers
If you’re eating right for skin health, it’s important to pay close attention to nutritional labels. For example, while healthy fats are excellent for your skin, that doesn’t mean you should load up on cooking oils indiscriminately.
Whether you’re choosing canola oil, vegetable oil, coconut oil, or olive oil, you’re going to be consuming around 120 calories and 14 grams of fat per tablespoon. This underscores the importance of doing your research and ensuring that you have the proper balance of nutrients and a healthy allotment of calories not only to optimize your skin’s appearance but also to promote your overall wellness.
After all, you’re not doing yourself any good if you’re trading your physical health for age-defying skin. Indeed, research has shown that obesity significantly contributes to dermatological disorders, from breakouts to skin infections, which are typically attributed to a decline in cellular functioning.
Maintaining healthy, youthful skin doesn’t just happen. It takes effort and commitment. Fortunately, though, that commitment doesn’t have to involve piggybank-breaking products or painful surgeries. Rather, with a bit of know-how, you can eat your way to skin health. A well-balanced diet rich in antioxidants, healthy fats, vitamins and minerals, and polyphenols improves the functioning and appearance of skin cells, no matter your age. In addition, keeping well-hydrated prevents dryness and supports cellular turnover. Best of all, you can amplify the benefits of a balanced diet through small, consistent lifestyle changes. Daily meditation can help reduce stress and inflammation to improve the health and appearance of the skin. Similarly, using exfoliants to trigger a skin purge will clear the pores of contaminants and, over time, give the skin a vibrant, youthful glow.
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