Lifestyle & Dietary Changes for a Healthy Skin
They say that your skin is an external reflection of what is going on inside your body, and in honesty, this is not too far from the truth. If having a clear complexion without blemishes and maintaining a youthful appearance is important to you, then you must eat foods that contain important skin nutrients and avoid certain detrimental lifestyle habits.
Some of the most important nutrients for good skin include vitamin A, essential fats, and zinc. High vitamin A foods include sweet potatoes, carrots, dark leafy greens, winter squashes, lettuce, dried apricots, cantaloupe, bell peppers, fish, liver, and tropical fruits, so be sure to get plenty of these foods into your diet.
Essential fats can be obtained from nuts- especially almonds and walnuts- as well as foods such as avocado, while zinc-friendly foods include oysters, liver, lamb, sesame seeds, pumpkin seeds, and peanuts.
Just be aware that some of these foods are high-calorie foods and should, therefore, be eaten in moderate amounts- you can still get plenty of what you need for glowing skin by eating them in moderation.
It goes without saying that the foods and drinks you probably already know are not good for you should be avoided if you want to have a clear complexion.
Try and limit alcohol, coffee, and tea consumption, as well as foods and drinks that are high in sugar and saturated fat. Alcohol and caffeine dehydrate the skin by moving fluid out of the body, which can cause premature wrinkles, and sugar also hastens the aging process.
You need to also avoid exposure to smoke from cigarettes and eliminate toxins from your environment which can disrupt your hormonal balance that is often reflected in how clear your complexion appears. Those pimples that pop up every month are usually related to hormonal imbalances and fluctuations which have a direct bearing on your skin.
It is also obvious that having a high intake of fresh fruits and veggies is important for glowing skin. Fresh produce contains important vitamins and antioxidants that help to fight the aging process. You also don’t have to worry about how much fresh produce you eat- the more the better! Fresh fruits and veg help to hydrate your skin as well as giving it a healthy boost through all the macro and micronutrients that are contained within them.
You want to avoid dehydration at all costs if you want to keep the wrinkles at bay. Stay hydrated by drinking at least a liter of clean, filtered water a day. If that gets boring, try infusing your water with fruit and herbs, or try drinking caffeine-free herbal teas.
If you only drink when you already feel thirsty, it means dehydration has already begun, so carry a water bottle around with you and sip from it throughout the day to keep consistently well-hydrated.
Vitamin C is essential in the manufacture of collagen, a protein that is essential in keeping the skin’s elasticity. It is always best to get vitamin C from food-based sources- citrus fruits, as well as bell peppers, dark leafy greens, kiwis, broccoli, berries, tomatoes, peas, and papayas are all great sources of this awesome skin-friendly vitamin. If it is hard for you to get these foods into your diet then supplement with a good multivitamin and mineral supplement.
We know what you’re thinking – is there anything exercise can’t do? There are plenty of reasons to work out from fitting into your old jeans to staying healthy. Regardless of what your goals are, we all can agree that the results you get from working out are almost always obvious – this includes exercise’s impact on your skin too.
Working out regularly boosts blood circulation, which increases blood and hence, nutrient and oxygen flow beneath the skin. Besides, increased blood circulation also elevates the skin’s ability to draw out toxins from the body, including those that clog your pores. Having a great sweat sesh pulls out the toxins, dirt, and sebum from the pores, making your skin look clearer.
However, working out isn’t enough. You need to eat right, maintain water, antioxidant and mineral-rich diet and make sure cleanse your skin properly, especially after working out to remove all that gunk. Pay special attention to acne-prone areas of your skin. Exercising can flush toxins from your skin but they’ll still remain on your skin if you don’t wash them off. If you’re using a prescription acne treatment, be sure to ask your doctor if it is safe to reapply the product after an afternoon or evening workout shower.
Another noteworthy benefit of working out that benefits the skin is the fact that exercise helps reduce stress. Exercise boosts endorphin release in the body and reduces cortisol, thereby countering one of the most common effects of stress i.e. acne.
We aren’t going to lie to you and say that you can prevent wrinkles forever. Wrinkles and fine lines are inevitable so you must learn to embrace them with age – however, you can slow their development by working out. As mentioned earlier, working out helps reduce cortisol levels in the body. Too much cortisol leads to collagen breakdown which can increase sagging and wrinkles. Exercise, on the other hand, supports collagen production and keeps the skin firm and elastic.
Increased oxygen flow also allows the skin to glow. In fact, you and your friends will notice that your skin keeps glowing for hours after your workout too. Your skin is being constantly nourished by blood vessels under the skin and this increases with a boost in blood supply from your workouts. When you exercise, your blood vessels dilate to release heat from the body, giving the skin a glowing, healthy appearance.
A clear, glowing complexion is possible to obtain by watching what you eat and avoiding foods and bad habits that are not so beneficial. Eating whole foods and avoiding toxins and chemicals is truly the key to skin that glows and remains youthful for longer.
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