If you get your skincare advice from cosmetics brands alone, you’d be forgiven for thinking that the single most important way to look after your skin is by applying creams and lotions to it.
And don’t get me wrong — high quality cleansers, moisturisers and toners are great for getting that radiant glow. Especially when you choose the right products for your unique skin type and lifestyle.
But skincare doesn’t start on the outside. It starts from within; with the food you choose to put in your body.
Countless studies have shown that nutrition is key to healthy skin. If you eat a diet rich in vegetables, fruits and healthy fats, your skin will be clearer, less dry, and…well, glowing. And it goes further than just the way your skin looks, too. Good diet has been linked to a much lower chance of serious skin disease, and slows down the signs of ageing.
How to eat for glowing skin
Nutritional studies have found that eating a diet high in antioxidants like beta-carotene and vitamins A, E, and C, is important for skin health. That doesn’t mean you should run for the supplements right away; because actually, your body absorbs vitamins more effectively when consumed along with all of the other nutrients in food.
So instead of the pharmacy, hit the grocery store. Fill your kitchen with fresh vegetables and fruits, and aim to build your meals with plants as the foundation — rather than something you add on the side.
Start including these delicious foods in your daily diet:
Avocados; rich in healthy fats and vitamins E and C
Sunflower seeds; packed with vitamin E and other vital skin-boosting nutrients, including selenium and zinc
Sweet potatoes; full of beta-carotene
Broccoli; a vitamin power house of a vegetable, rich in vitamins A and C, zing, lutein (which works similarly to beta-carotene), and an immune-boosting compound called sulforaphane
Walnuts; packed with omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, as well as zinc and small amounts of vitamins C, E and selenium
All of the above are delicious, and can add taste as well as essential goodness to your meals.
Try sprinkling sunflower seeds and crushed walnuts onto salads; have a baked sweet potato with olive oil, spinach and feta cheese; and enjoy an avocado as a healthy and filling snack, with a pinch of salt and a drizzle of lemon juice. And of course, don’t forget to drink fresh, clean water. Lots of it.
Skincare starts with nutrition
It’s not what everyone wants to hear — because it’s not a quick fix. But the reality is that no matter how many moisturisers you buy, your skin won’t look and feel nourished and healthy if you’re not eating well. The skin is an organ which reflects your overall health; if you don’t care for your body, you’re not caring for your skin.
But eating well can become a positive part of your life. Shift your intentions from covering up skin issues, to nourishing your skin from within. You’ll look fabulous — and you’ll feel so much better.