Overview

A glowing flawless skin can give your appearance a big boost and your personality an impressive look. And, the proven truth of the matter is, it can be achieved by having a healthy skin diet plan, which incorporates foods that improve your skin complexion, tone, and glow.

It is difficult to fathom the true power of nutrition. The benefits accrue from the tiniest cell inside your body to the largest organ of your body – the skin.

What proper nutrition obtained through a healthy diet consisting of the right type of foods does, is truly amazing:

  • Giving your bones, joints, and teeth a  long pain-free life,
  • Prevents you from developing chronic conditions like blood pressure and diabetes,
  • Protects you from heart disease and stroke,
  • Keeps your organs like the liver, kidneys, and brain in top shape,
  • Keeps your immunity strong,
  • Sharpens your senses,
  • Keeps your blood levels within healthy limits, and
  • Gives your skin an appearance that will attract envy.

Your skin is the largest organ in the body. Eating healthy foods that specifically improve your skin gives your skin the right nutrition and the perfect look.

And, if you have had the misfortune to suffer from acne or rosacea, or premature skin aging, this post has you covered. Make it a regular feature to have these skin-friendly foods in your diet and you will start seeing results in three months.

Get your quota of macronutrients, micronutrients, and antioxidants that support your skin from within with the foods described below. The skin is a window to your overall health.

Stress, processed foods, and eating foods that lack nutrition are the most common reasons that cause premature aging of the skin, age spots, conditions such as acne and psoriasis, and those undesirable lines and bags under the eyes. The healthy skin diet arms your skin with the nutrients to fight off these undesirable conditions and look flawless.

The never-ending desire to have smooth glowing skin has led to the explosion of cosmetics and anti-aging surgeries, which do have a temporary effect. But, do we really need these aids?

Studies have shown beyond doubt that a diet consisting of bad fats and processed carbohydrates damages your skin and caused premature wrinkling. On the other hand, foods high in nutrients such as vitamin C got rid of the wrinkles on the skin even later on in life.

Besides Vitamin C, there are many other nutrients that promote the proper function of the skin and also make it look radiant naturally.

Your skin is fed from within. Therefore, if your within is healthy, your skin will be healthy.

Here we shall discuss the foods you must incorporate into your diet to improve your skin complexion.  The exterior of your skin will reflect the internal health of your body. Therefore, to have skin that glows and looks healthy, you must give it proper nourishment.

What nutrients and foods improve your skin?

We have below the list of the main nutrients and foods that must form part of your everyday diet.

  • Vitamins that play an important part in improving your skin appearance include vitamins A, C, E, B-complex, K, and D.
  • Minerals such as copper, selenium, and zinc
  • Essential fatty acids such as Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids

Vitamin A foods

Vitamin A plays an important part in the repair and maintenance of skin tissue. Deficiency of vitamin A results in dry skin. Betacarotene, an active form of vitamin A, reduces the risk of psoriasis. A topical application of vitamin A called Retin-A is used in the treatment of acne.

Food sources of vitamin A include

  • carrots,
  • papaya,
  • mango,
  • watermelon,
  • spinach,
  • sweet potato,
  • broccoli, and
  • tomatoes.

Vitamin C and E foods

The topical applications of vitamins C and E protect the skin from the harmful effects of the sun. To understand their positive effects on the skin, you must know what are free radicals.

Free radicals are unstable molecules formed due to the sun, smoke, and pollution. They are the result of the oxidation process. They destroy the collagen and elastin fibers of the skin.  (Compare it to rusting of iron due to oxidation.).

Collagen and elastin support the skin structure and give the skin its plump and fresh appearance. Their destruction by the free radicals gives the skin an aging and wrinkled look. Vitamin C and E neutralize the free radicals and maintain a healthy appearance of the skin.

Food sources of vitamin C include

  • Citrus fruits like oranges and lime,
  • guava,
  • strawberries,
  • vegetables like green vegetables, broccoli, cauliflower,
  • green and red pepper, and
  • blueberries.

You can take vitamin C supplements daily up to a dosage of 500 to 1000 mgms.

Vitamin B complex foods

Biotin (vitamin B3) and Niacin (vitamin B9) are among the B complex vitamins that play an important role in maintaining the healthy structure of the skin. Lack of Biotin in the body makes one susceptible to dermatitis.

Niacin helps by retaining the water content of the skin. So, having a diet containing adequate amounts of Biotin and Niacin is important. Topical applications of Biotin and Niacin are very fast acting and can give you plump, young-looking, and glowing skin.

Dietary sources of Biotin (B3) and Niacin (B9) include

  • meat,
  • poultry,
  • fish
  • eggs,
  • whole grains,
  • banana,
  • oatmeal,
  • breweries
  • yeast, and
  • brown rice.

Vitamin K foods

Vitamin K helps skin health mainly by protecting and promoting its collagen content.

With healthy collagen production, your skin appears more, plump, smooth, and youthful. Collagen contributes to good skin elasticity thereby preventing wrinkles and fine lines. Studies have proven the anti-aging benefits of vitamin K.

The topical application of vitamin K helps to reduce dark circles under the eyes. This action becomes more effective when vitamin K is combined with vitamin A.

Common food sources of vitamin K include

  • green leafy vegetables such as kale, broccoli, spinach,
  • collard greens,
  • cabbage, and
  • lettuce.

Vitamin D

Sun exposure is the best way to get enough vitamin D. Too much exposure can be bad for your skin. But, at the same time, you need that much exposure to give you your requirement of vitamin D, the sunshine vitamin. It is one of the most needed vitamins our body needs because of its multiple functions.

Vitamin D has a range of skin benefits, including effectively treating psoriasis and reducing acne with its antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties.

The active form of vitamin D (calcitriol) protects your skin from damage, reduces puffiness and inflammation, improves skin cell growth and skin repair, and reduces lines & wrinkles. These actions prevent and slow down skin aging

You require about 20 to 40 minutes of sunlight exposure to get your quota of vitamin D. But, some of us may have to spend more time in the sun maybe as an occupational hazard.

In such cases, to protect your skin against sun damage, you could use certain protective measures, but only after the initial short unprotected exposure to the sun. Protective creams do not allow the UV rays of the sun from reaching the skin, thereby depriving us of the sun’s vitamin D benefit.

You could get your vitamin D from sunlight or from certain vitamin D foods. A lack of Vitamin D can give you a dull complexion and dry, flaky skin on your face and other areas of your body. Vitamin D deficiency is associated with the risk of psoriasis and atopic dermatitis,

Some food sources of vitamin D include

  • Cod liver oil,
  • Salmon,
  • Tuna fish,
  • Orange juice fortified with vitamin D,
  • Dairy and plant milk fortified with vitamin D,
  • Sardines,
  • Beef liver,
  • Egg yolk, and
  • Fortified cereals

Selenium, copper, and  zinc

Foods containing the minerals selenium, copper, and  zinc

  • Selenium: This mineral helps to prevent skin burns due to the sun. It is also helpful in making you less prone to skin cancer. Dietary sources of selenium include
  • Copper: Along with zinc and vitamin C, copper helps in the formation of collagen in the skin, thus helping the skin to attain that plump and young look. The topical application of copper improves the elasticity of the skin. Dietary sources of copper include
    • whole grain cereals,
    • legumes,
    • fruits,
    • green leafy vegetables,
    • soya beans,
    • nuts,
    • oysters,
    • shellfish, and
    • organ meat.
  • Zinc: Zinc reduces inflammation, heals damaged skin tissues, and smoothens skin. It’s effective in treating rosacea, eczema, and melasma, among other skin conditions. Topical applications of zinc are used to treat acne. Dietary sources of Zinc include
    • Lean meat,
    • oysters,
    • poultry.

Essential fatty acid (EFAs) foods

Last but definitely not least important, EFAs are the “good fats”. They are Omega 3 and Omega 6 fatty acids, which cannot be manufactured by the body and therefore have to be replenished through diet.

These fatty acids protect the skin from inflammation and help the skin to retain moisture, absorb nutrients and get rid of waste. Lack of EFAs leads to increased secretion of sebum, which blocks the skin pores leading to the formation of acne, whiteheads, and blackheads.

Dietary Sources of Omega 3 include

  • Fish like salmon, mackerel, and sardines,
  • flaxseeds,
  • walnuts,
  • canola oil, and
  • omega 3 can also be taken through supplements such as fish oil capsules.

Dietary sources of Omega 6 include

  • Whole grain cereals,
  • vegetable oils,
  • poultry,
  • baked foods and
  • Nuts.

Drink enough water to stay well hydrated

Drink water to improve skin complexion. The benefits of drinking adequate water are well advocated in general by the medical fraternity.

Adequate water intake every day helps to get rid of toxins from the body through the kidneys and intestines and keeps you healthy.

Skin is flushed off its toxins through more sweating. Beauty begins within and the health within is reflected on the exterior, which is the skin.

Milk

The proteins that naturally occur in milk help improve the elasticity of our skin, which translates into fewer wrinkles, and as a natural course of aging, they develop slower.

Milk also contains retinol (an antioxidant) and vitamin D, which help to protect your skin from the damaging effect of the sun’s rays.

Raw milk acts as an effective face moisturizer. Its nutritional value is immense and is packed with vitamins A, D, B6, and B12, biotin, calcium, protein, and other nutrients, which give good nourishment to your skin. The benefits of drinking milk range throughout the body’s systems.

Due to its hydrating and moisturizing properties, its local application overnight helps you solve the issue of skin dryness and itchiness.

What to avoid for good skin?

Avoid foods high in sugar and unhealthy fats:

  • Avoid foods that contain sugar and refined carbohydrates
  • junk foods
  • chips
  • cookies
  • French fries
  • sugar and sugary foods
  • sugary soft drinks
  • white bread
  • potatoes
  • white rice
  • refined grains
  • cookies
  • white bread
  • alcoholsalmon
  • foods with added sugars

Summary:

Your diet and foods to improve your skin complexion should, therefore, consist of whole grain and whole grain cereals, fruits especially citrus fruits, vegetables especially green leafy vegetables, nuts, lean meat, poultry, and fish, especially salmon. Eat plenty of salmon to get that glowing skin and to improve your skin tone.

Additionally, there is something more you could do to prime up your skin: