It’s an old cliché, but beauty starts on the inside. A positive mindset, a good balance of work, rest and play, and practicing kindness towards yourself and others should be the first step of any beauty routine.
Diet also plays an important part in skin health. Highly processed foods and refined carbohydrates with a high glycaemic index (think donuts, sweet biscuits, chips, fried foods, and sugary beverages) can contribute to acne and other skin problems.
Foods that are high in antioxidants help fight free radicals in the body. Free radicals are unstable atoms that can damage cells and cause ageing, inflammation and other illnesses. We produce free radicals naturally but we also attract them from the environment from things like toxins in skin care and cleaning products, cigarette smoke, pesticides and radiation. Antioxidants protect the cells against free radicals.
Foods for antioxidants
Brightly coloured fruit and vegetables like blueberries, strawberries artichokes, raspberries, kale, beets, red cabbage and spinach that are rich in colour contain carotenoids which are a source of antioxidants. Antioxidants can also be found in dark chocolate (at least 70% cocoa), green tea, pecans, coriander and red wine.
Vitamin C and skin health
Vitamin C also has antioxidant properties and also helps the body’s natural production of collagen, which strengthens and hydrates the skin. Vitamin C can be found in strawberries, peppers, mangoes, pineapple, kiwi fruit, grapefruit, Brussel sprouts, papaya and cantaloupe.
Collagen for your skin
Collagen is also important for healthy skin. Collagen strengthens the skin and improves elasticity and hydration. Collagen is the most abundant protein in the body, but as we age, we produce less collagen. Collagen can be found in the connective tissue of animals and in bone broth.
How Vitamin A helps
Vitamin A assists in the natural production of collagen and elastin which helps keep the skin firm and radiant. It may also help to prevent breakouts, reduce pigmentation, reduce sun damage and support the skin’s immune system. Foods that are a good source of Vitamin A include salmon, dairy products, eggs, cod liver oil, shrimp, carrots, tomatoes, sweet potatoes, leafy green vegetables, mangoes, apricots and plums.
The role of healthy fats
Healthy fats that are rich in Omega-3s help to keep the skin firm, moisturised and supple. They can also reduce inflammation, redness and acne. Find healthy fats in fatty fish like salmon, mackerel and herring, avocados, walnuts, linseeds, flaxseeds, chia and hemp seeds.
In conjunction with an active lifestyle, plenty of water and adequate rest, a diet that includes a wide variety of fresh fruits and vegetables from the colours of the rainbow each day, can help give your skin a natural and healthy glow.
How we can help
Go Vita Ballarat stock a large range of nuts, seeds, oils and wholegrain foods and broths to help you include more skin-loving vitamins, minerals and nutrients in your diet. Our in-store naturopaths are also available to chat to you about your current diet and lifestyle and to discuss if supplements may be required.
A list of "rainbow" foods for healthy skin:
Cod liver oil