At Pretty Clean Shop, we're passionate about skincare and about finding ways to boost your health and beauty from the inside out. This is why we’ve invited Melissa Cosentino, Holistic Nutritionist, to write a piece on our blog about how our skin is affected by the food we eat.
Melissa is the founder of MellyFit Nutrition a Toronto-based Clinical Practice where she offers Nutritional Counselling. She specializes in digestive care, food sensitivities, meal planning, detoxification, sports nutrition, and stress management.
TOP TIPS FOR HEALTHY SKIN.
You may or may not be aware that the food you put into your body (and what you don't put into it) has an effect on our skin. When we metabolize the food we eat, essentially break it down into tiny particles of proteins, fats and carbs, it is then circulated to be transported to our organs and absorbed where needed. With our skin being the largest organ, it 100% will be affected by the foods we eat, amongst many other factors like gut health, toxicity, hormonal, etc.
What happens when we consume skin-irritating foods like wheat (gluten), dairy, sugar, alcohol and coffee, is that it triggers the release of pro-inflammatory hormones which can lead to things like rosacea, eczema, dermatitis and redness of the skin.
Rhytides, sagging of skin, and loss of elasticity are all related to changes in the collagen and elastic fibers of the skin, which are themselves impacted by diet. Ingestion of sugar, in particular, can accelerate these signs of aging, as it promotes cross-linking of collagen fibers.
Aside from these foods being good for overall health, they specifically are wonderful for our skin. Here’s why:
1. Water! Hydration is needed for SUPPLE and SMOOTH skin.
This one is an easy one! Water is critical to achieve healthy looking skin. Water is so important for carrying nutrients throughout the body, digestion, circulation, absorption and excretion. It also flushes out toxins from our body, which might otherwise represent themselves on our face through blemishes or acne. Drinking an adequate amount also comes with anti-aging benefits for the skin! Aim for 2 – 3 L filtered water per day.
The structure of our skin is mainly made up of the protein, collagen. Unfortunately, after the age of 25 its production rapidly declines – hence fine lines and wrinkles! Research shows that collagen supplements improve skin elasticity, reduce wrinkles, boost skin hydration and increase the density of fibroblasts — cells in connective tissue that produce collagen. Adding hydrolyzed collagen to your coffee, teas or smoothies is a simple way to include it in your daily routine. Try out Organika- Enhanced Collagen.
Did you know they are a fruit? These beauties are packed with healthy fats that will help you achieve that GLOWING skin! Not to mention the essential fatty acid content they have been shown to reduce breakouts and acne. How does it do this? By soothing your body's inflammatory response to excess sebum and bacteria, they can also tackle the root of the problem by helping to regulate acne-causing hormones, such as testosterone and androgen. Try this Green Avocado smoothie.
4. Hemp Seeds/Oil
This powerful little super seed really packs a punch for optimal skin health! The anti-inflammatory compounds in hemp seeds may help relieve dry skin, eczema and itchiness. As a bonus the high omega-3 content and antibacterial properties in hemp seeds may help to manage and reduce acne symptoms. Toss these seeds or oil on your salad, add to your smoothie or make a delicious raw protein ball with it! Try this delicious Hemp Protein Ball Recipe
Not only do berries brighten up your day, but they are also packed with antioxidants which are a perfect match for aging or damaged skin. Antioxidants stimulate cell growth and neutralize free radicals in our bodies, ultimately improving skin tone, texture and reversing the effects of sun damage. Just one serving of strawberries contains 85 mg of Vitamin C!
A total skin superfood and detoxifying gem that should be a regular item in your grocery shopping haul! It's rich in beautifying nutrients including vitamins A, C and K. It's also rich in iron, magnesium potassium, and many antioxidants. It also contains Lutein, a precursor to collagen, which is essential for skin support. The detox benefits of kale from fibre and glucosinolates are notable because more efficient detoxification means healthier, more vibrant skin.
Try this Detox Soup Recipe
7. Green tea
Known to help improve skin elasticity, and hence, slow down skin ageing. Green tea is also known to have a moisturizing effect on the skin and it may also reverse sun damage on the skin. Contains antioxidants: Vitamin A (retinol) and Catechins. They will protect your skin from sun damage and reduce redness as well as improving hydration. I particularly love that it has the compound EGCG (epigallocatechin-3-gallate), which is antioxidant and anti-inflammatory in nature. It may help prevent acne and other skin infections. Try out this Mega Matcha + Adaptogens by Lake & Oak Tea Co
Article written by Melissa Cosentino, Holistic Nutritionist. To learn more about Melissa click here and to book a FREE discovery call.