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Skin cells are one of the body’s most frequently replaced cells, and as such what we eat and supplement our diet with on a daily basis reflects in our skin very quickly. So if you are looking for glowing, healthy, beautiful skin, here are the simple steps to take.
First of all, if your skin is looking a little lacklustre, the first thing to do is check your intake of the key vitamins involved in skin cell formation including Vitamins A, E and C which can be found in fruits and vegetables, seeds and grains. When selecting your fresh fruit and vegetables, remember the brighter the colour of the produce, the higher the nutrient content and the better it will be for you. Focus on including at least 1 red or orange vegetable or fruit in your diet every single day, along with at least 1 cup of leafy green vegetables such as kale, spinach and broccoli. Both offer the powerful antioxidants Vitamin C and beta carotene, the precursor to Vitamin A as well as plenty of fibre which helps to eliminate wastes from the body efficiently. Vitamin C is crucial as it is directly involved in new skin cell generated, and eating antioxidant rich foods every day will also help to prevent cell damage that can cause ageing.
Next, and perhaps most importantly for glowing skin, focus on your good fats. The long chain omega 3 fats which are found primarily in oily fish such as salmon and tuna have a key functional role within the membrane or wall of a skin cell. Both the flexibility of the skin as well as its moisture content is influenced by the essential fats in our diet, which can be low if individuals are following a very low fat diet. For this reason, if your skin has not been looking its best, check your intake of good fats – we need 40-60g a day, and you could even consider taking a fish oil supplement to really give your skin and immune system a boost. Other skin friendly foods that are rich in these essential fats include nuts and seeds such as walnuts, almonds, sunflower and pumpkin seeds. Nuts and seeds are a rich natural source of Vitamin E, another powerful antioxidant involved in repairing damaged cells in the body. Another easy way to ensure you get an optimal amount of fish oil is to supplement your diet with a high strength fish oil.
Read more on fish oil and how it can help you, here.
Another key dietary area closely linked to skin health is protein. Protein rich foods including lean red meat and seafood not only contain the essential proteins the body needs to build all tissues, but they are also excellent sources of zinc which is involved in new skin cell production as it helps Vitamin A to be released from the liver, a crucial step for new cell production. Ideally we need to consume zinc rich foods every single day and sometimes ‘occasional’ meat eaters do not get enough zinc or iron each week. If you do include red meat in your diet, we need at least three small serves a week to get the amounts of iron and zinc required for good health and in this case, healthy skin.
Perhaps most importantly lest not forget the importance of hydration. The look and fluidity of cells is largely dependent on keeping well hydrated, yet up to 75% of us are dehydrated at any one time. This means for many of us, better skin simply means drinking more filtered water every single day. At a minimum aim for 1-1.5L and herbal tea is another low calorie way to increase your fluid intake.
Finally, if your goal is great looking skin, you can also consider if there are any specialty supplements that may give your skin a boost. Evening primrose oil, Co Q10 and specific vitamins including Vitamin C are just some of the supplementary health products proposed to help optimise the look and feel of the skin.
Steps to skin superfood success
1. Try adding a vegetable juice made from beetroot, celery, carrot and kale into your diet.
2. Aim for ½ plate of salad or vegetables at both lunch and dinner.
3. Order beef or lamb stir fries when eating out.
4. Use salmon and shellfish in your salads for a zinc and omega 3 hit.
5. Add nuts and seeds to salads.
6. Get into a habit of snacking on some nuts each afternoon.
7. Choose breads and crackers that contain seeds and grains.
8. Take a fish oil supplement at night.
9. Make sure you are eating lean red meat three times a week.
10. Roast brightly coloured vegetables with olive oil and serve with dinner.
To learn more about D&X product range including where to buy them, click here.
Did you know a surprisingly high number of people have a fatty liver? Learn how you can help build a healthy liver here.
Susie is currently a brand ambassador for D&X. To learn more about the partnership, click here.