6 amazing facts about our skin’s response to our diet
Lots of people don’t think of the skin as an organ, but that’s what it is. Indeed, the skin is the largest organ in the body and as such can be benefited or harmed by what a person ingests. Like every other organ, the skin needs a nice balance of nutrients to stay healthy. Here are five facts about the skin’s response to diet:
1. Keeping Hydrated
Start with the most necessary “nutrient” of all, which is water. Water keeps skin supple and replenishes it after it has lost water through sweat. A person should make sure they drink plenty of water throughout the day to make sure that their kidneys easily remove toxins that can infiltrate the skin and dull it. Experts recommend that a person drink about 2 quarts of clean water every day.
Acerola cherries and guava also keep the skin hydrated. They have a lot of hyaluronic acid, a substance that is so good at locking moisture in the skin that it is often used as a dermal filler.
2. Producing Collagen
Omega-3 fatty acids are abundant in cold water, fatty fish such as sardines, herring and salmon as well as chia and flax seeds. They help the body produce collagen, a springy layer of protein that is found beneath the layers of skin and keeps it elastic. Foods with omega-3 fatty acids also help reduce and soften the look of wrinkles and delay the signs of aging. The fish are also rich in vitamin D and the B complex vitamins as well as selenium, iodine and potassium. Vitamin D is an anti-carcinogen that can help protect against skin cancer.
3. Avoiding Wrinkles and Sun Damage
Green leafy vegetables such as kale, mustard greens and collard greens can have more vitamin C than citrus fruits. Vitamin C is an antioxidant that protects the body from damage from free radicals, and this includes the skin. These molecules can do damage to the skin when exposed to pollutants or even the sun’s ultraviolet rays. The damage appears as wrinkles, lines, furrows, age spots and dry patches and can even predispose some people to melanoma, the deadliest type of skin cancer. Green leafy vegetables also have plenty of vitamin A, which is another antioxidant. Vitamin A helps the body make collagen, and many skin treatments such as retinol are derived from vitamin A. Carotenoids are substances that convert to vitamin A in the body, and they also help protect skin from damage from the sun. Salmon contains vitamin E, which has anti-aging effects when it comes to the skin.
4. Glowing Skin
Types of algae are also good when it comes to the health of the skin. Spirulina is rich in proteins, magnesium, iron, zinc, calcium, potassium and chlorophyll. It purifies the blood, is an antioxidant and has anti-aging effects on the skin. Chlorella and chia seeds are also a blood cleanser that clear the skin and promote the regeneration of skin cells. Though it is used as a vegetable most times, avocado is a fruit, and its healthy oils nourish and soften the skin. A chemical called sterolin, found in avocados, can soften the appearance of age spots. Goji berries also help build collagen and keep skin juicy and youthful.
Colorful fruits such as peppers, lemons, oranges, limes and cherries are rich in vitamin A and especially vitamin C. The acerola cherry is famous for having a great amount of this vitamin as well as flavonoids. Vitamin C’s main job in the body is to help create connective tissue and to heal wounds. Flavonoids are nutrients that serve as anti-inflammatories. They also improve the look of the skin by healing spider veins and rosacea.
Nuts such a hazelnuts are high in superoxide dismutase, or SOD. These are enzymes that have anti-aging properties that can be seen in the skin. They heal cellular damage and are anti-inflammatories.
6. Effects of Alcohol and Junk Food
According to Dr. Bill Andrews from Siorai (https://www.siorai.com/), the skin is one of the first things negatively affected by a bad diet.. Though moderate amounts of alcohol are fine, too much dilates the blood vessels in the face and starts to degrade the collagen that supports the skin. This leads to spider or thread veins. Alcohol also pulls nutrients out of the skin and leaves it dull. Though there is less certainty among dermatologists about the effect of junk food on the skin, it is still best to steer clear of them for a healthy complexion.
The skin has a variety of complex jobs, including protecting the internal organs, allowing the body to breathe, protecting it from infections and secreting toxins. A good, healthy diet helps it do its job that much better.