Eat to Nourish your skin
Eat to Nourish your Skin
We’ve all heard the saying ‘you are what you eat’ but what about the saying ‘you are what you don’t eat?’ It may sounds ridiculous but what you eat or more importantly what you don’t eat may be evident on your face as you begin to age!
Green tea and Red Wine
Wrinkles are caused by a loss of three vital skin structures: collagen, elastin and hyaluronic acid. The goal in wrinkle treatment is to increase levels of these three substances. Before turning to more extreme measures later down the track, we at the Me Clinic think prevention is always better than a cure.
Drink 2 to 4 cups of green tea per day to help strengthen collagen and promote relaxation and cortisol control. This caused by the high content of flavonoid/catechins and of theanine, an amino acid. Too much cortisol can induce disruptions in blood sugar and inflammation. Green tea is chock full of phytochemicals, chemical compounds that occur naturally in plants. It’s particularly high in one called epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), which has been found to be protective against UV-induced skin damage.
Red wine has a flavonoid/collagen effect similar to green tea and is known for its relaxation effects and blood flow-promotion.
Try to eat: steep a loose leaf or grean tea tea bags in a cup of boiling water for 3 minutes 2-4 times a day or include a glass of red wine with dinner.
We all know that we need to drink more water. Very few of us are drinking our recommended daily intake of 8 glasses to stave off dehydration but even if we drink our recommended dose how much of that water is rehydrating your skin?
As far as skin is concerned, it is not how much water you drink but how well your skin holds onto the water. Skin needs adequate levels of fatty acids, ceramides (a type of fat) and cholesterol to hold onto water. This is why vegans and people on low-cholesterol diets or cholesterol-lowering drugs have dry skin.
Any liquid you drink can provide skin hydration; however, water consumption should be increased when drinking caffeine and alcohol, both of which can dehydrate you.
Try to Drink: 8 glasses of water a day, room temperature or warm water is absorbed in to the body fast that ice cold water.
Omega-3s (Fatty Acids)
So what can we eat to promote the rehydration of our skin? Omega-3s help the skin increase its ability to hold water, which leads to softer, wrinkle-free skin.
Healthy omega-3 fatty acids help maintain cell membranes so that they are effective barriers--allowing water and nutrients in and keeping toxins out. Omega-3s have been found to protect skin against sun damage and furthermore act as an anti-inflammatory, helping reduce acne and facial redness.
Omega-3s are actually a group of several nutrients, including eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), none of which the body can produce on its own. They’re found mainly in coldwater fish (as well as walnuts, flaxseed and some green vegetables such as kale) and help keep the cell membrane strong (the skin is made up of cells, and the cell membrane is the outside layer of the cell), preventing harm from the outside from getting in.
Try to Eat: oily fish, sardines, Pacific oysters, lake trout, flaxseeds, walnuts, almonds, hazelnuts and omega-3 fortified eggs. Fish high in omega-3s include salmon, mackerel, cod and tuna (particularly the albacore and bluefin varieties).
Berries, especially blueberries and strawberries, are high in antioxidants, chemicals that protect the cells by combating the free radicals that damage skin at a cellular level. Free radicals are by-products that form when oxygen is used by the body, almost like how an apple gets brown when you cut it open and expose it to the air. Antioxidants interrupt that damaging process.
Try to Eat: Any berry you can get your hands on! They’re all great. Frozen, fresh, straight or in a smoothie they’ll all do the trick.
Instead of refined carbs, eat more whole grain carbs, which don't cause the blood sugar spikes that lead to the glycation (sugar breaking down) of skin proteins that accelerates wrinkling.
Try to Eat: Whole wheat, whole oats, whole grain corn, popcorn, brown and wild rice, whole rye, whole grain barley, buckwheat, quinoa, tritacale, millet, bulgur and sorghum.
Vitamin C is involved in collagen production and protects cells from free radical damage. Some studies have shown that vitamin C helps enable skin to fight off oxidative damage; furthermore getting the proper amount of vitamin C in your diet can help reverse wrinkles.
Try to Eat: Capsicum (red/green/yellow), oranges, strawberries, lemons, kiwi fruit and broccoli.
This vitamin helps protect cell membranes and guards against UV radiation damage. Some research suggests that vitamin E may work in combination with vitamin C to provide an extra boost of anti-aging skin protection.
Try to Eat: Sunflower seeds, paprika, almonds, pine nuts, peanuts, dried apricots, cooked spinach wheat germ, avocado and fortified cereals