You'll find a lot of articles about the best foods to eat for a variety of reasons: big muscles, more energy, or curing a cold. Today, I'm giving you an article, not just about the best foods for beautiful skin, but also about the components that make these foods so wonderful for your skin. Before we get to that though, there are two easy things you can do to improve your skin, and your overall health: stay hydrated and get enough sleep. You know, your skin shows when you are dehydrated or when you consistently don't get enough sleep. Another great advantage of eating for healthy skin? It usually benefits your hair and nails too!
Best Nutrients for Your Skin
Vitamin A can help shield your skin from the effects of UV rays, which also can help prevent sun-related damage. This potent antioxidant fights off free radicals and oxidative stress, which causes a lot of age-associated skin damage like wrinkles. Healthy amounts of vitamin A can hydrate your skin, giving off a natural and radiant glow, speed up your skin's healing process, and prevent breakouts.
The best part about this vitamin is that you can easily fit it into your diet. You want to consume about 700-900mcg a day, which is not hard to achieve. For example, eating one sweet potato will provide you with 1,400mcg, 561% of your daily value. You can also look for it in spinach, milk, or cheddar cheese.
Omega-3 fatty acids, also known as healthy fats, help keep your skin moisturized and supple. Not to mention, they reduce inflammation, prevent red acne, fight sunburns, and guard against itchy and red skin.
Try to eat at least 250-500mg of Omega-3s every day, but you can maximize your benefits by exceeding these recommendations in your daily diet. Salmon, avocado, olive oil, and almonds all contain generous amounts of Omega-3s. For example, 3.5 ounces of salmon contain about 1,500mg!
Vitamin C supports collagen creation, a primary protein in the skin (read about the importance of collagen), the immune system, and skin healing. The outer layer of your skin, the epidermis, and the inner layer, the dermis, both contain high amounts of vitamin C and work to keep your skin healthy. Many skincare products contain vitamin C to amp up the amount in your skin topically and boost anti-aging benefits. But consuming vitamin C will work in the same way.
Eat 1,000mg per day in order to receive these benefits. You’ll get plenty of this antioxidant when you eat foods like kiwi, Brussels sprouts, tomatoes, mangoes, and the obvious choice — citrus!
Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant that helps protect your skin from oxidative damage and inflammation by absorbing the sun's harmful UV rays so that your skin does not have to. Think of it as a natural sunscreen that you can eat!
This one is easy to hit your daily target since you only need about 15 mg of vitamin E per day. Add more vitamin E into your diet by including nuts and seeds, avocados, olive oil, and spinach.
I know, you probably weren’t expecting me to mention this mineral. But, as one of the most widely studied forms of acne treatment, you need to know about it! Your metabolism utilizes zinc in over 300 metabolic processes in the body by fighting off harmful cells and defending your immune system. Besides preventing illness, zinc also reduces redness from acne and irritation from residual acne scars.
You only need about 8mg of zinc in your diet to receive its full effect. You can find it in lean red meats, poultry, beans, dairy, nuts, and shellfish.