Eat Your Way to Healthy Skin!May 22, 2023
Is the saying "you are what you eat" really true? Well, It could be! Eating a healthy, balanced diet with lean protein, complex carbohydrates, unsaturated fats, and less refined sugars can lower the risk of chronic heart disease, diabetes, and other health issues. But did you know that what you eat can also affect the health of your skin?
What does my diet have to do with my skin, you ask?
First things first, your skin is more than just a protective barrier! It's a dynamic organ that requires a variety of nutrients to function optimally. Your skin needs all the food groups listed above, especially antioxidants to help fight free radicals from pollution and radiation from the sun. By nourishing our body with the right foods, we provide our skin with the essential building blocks it needs to maintain its health. Each day brings us closer to unlocking the fascinating secrets of how the foods we consume affect our overall health and skin!
Studies have shown that following a Mediterranean diet can be very beneficial to our health as it includes many of the healthy food groups recommended. Plus, it even includes a glass of red wine if you enjoy it!
Balance is key
When it comes to achieving healthy skin, balance is the key. It's important not to overemphasize one food group while neglecting others. Our bodies require nutrients from all categories to function at their best. Additionally, very restrictive diets can negatively impact your skin, leading to dryness, decreased muscle mass, impaired collagen production, and in severe cases, abnormal hair growth (lanugo).
While there's no single "superfood" to rely on, choosing whole foods that closely resemble their original form is more beneficial. Sorry, real fruit flavoring does not equal eating the real fruit! Remember, nothing beats the real thing.
What foods can damage or negatively impact your skin?
While I'm a girl with a sweet tooth, too much sugar can speed up the aging process by binding to collagen and causing damage and dysfunction through advanced glycation end products (AGEs). Plus, too much sugar can increase insulin-like growth factor (IGF-1) which can increase inflammation, sebum production and contribute to acne breakouts. Therefore, moderation is key, as it is in all aspects of life.
If you have questions about the best diet for your overall health and skin, first seek guidance from your primary care doctor and a registered dietician.
Maintaining healthy skin goes beyond topical skincare routines; it starts with mindful food choices. Turns out, we actually are what we eat!
To discover the inside scoop on how your diet can transform your skin, check out my latest podcast episode with Dr. Graber!
A new podcast is released every Monday.