A diet for healthy skin is important for enhancing beauty, but also for overall well-being. The skin is the interface between the external environment and your body. It is a representation of inner health, or of discord and imbalance. It also can act as an organ of elimination when the kidneys, liver, and colon become overburdened. When toxins are excreted through the skin they reduce the vitality of this organ. Blemishes, poor skin coloring and texture, puffy eyes, very dry or oily skin, and even wrinkles and sagging skin are all signs of an accumulation of waste in the body and a lack of valuable nutrients.
To improve your complexion it is necessary to eat a diet rich in cleansing, nutrient-rich foods and low in processed, sugary, salty, and fatty foods. This will promote clear, glowing skin because it will help remove toxins from the body on a regular basis. This is not only beneficial for skin health, but for the well-being of all major organs.
Fruits and Vegetables
The foundation of a cleansing diet should be fresh fruits and vegetables. They will provide a rich supply of:
- Antioxidants to defend cells from free radical damage
- Enzymes to improve immune function and digestion
- Vitamin C to encourage collagen production, support the repair and growth of new tissue, and to attack free radicals
- Carotenes to help prevent acne and skin disorders and to neutralize free radicals
- Chlorophyll to help purify the blood
- Minerals such as silica, sulphur, calcium, and magnesium which are necessary for the formation and maintenance of healthy cells
- Fiber to promote the natural elimination of waste
- Water to hydrate and encourage the removal of toxins
Drink fresh juices such as pineapple, apple, cucumber, and papaya on a regular basis. Eat a salad made from dark green leafy vegetables once a day. Snack on berries, bananas, peaches, and pears. Eat raw carrot, celery, broccoli, and cauliflower with dip instead of cheese and crackers. The more fruits and vegetables you eat, the faster your skin will improve.
Essential Fatty Acids
Another important part of skin-healthy eating is essential fatty acids. They are important for all skin imbalances and are especially critical for dry skin conditions such as eczema. They will promote smooth, supple skin and help repair tissue. As the omega oils are slippery in nature, they will even help eliminate toxins in the body by encouraging the release of fatty deposits in the bloodstream. Excellent sources of essential fatty acids are avocados, flaxseed oil, hemp seed oil, salmon, and walnuts.
Consuming whole grains instead of white flour and white rice based products is also important for a balanced complexion. Grains are a wonderful source of the B-complex vitamins which support a healthy skin tone. Some such as oats and brown rice are rich in silica. Selenium is found in most grains; this mineral acts as an antioxidant and helps to improve skin elasticity. Most whole grains are also a good source of essential fatty acids and amino acids. Refined grains are not as easy for the body to digest and are lacking in nutrients.
Adequate water is the foundation of clear skin. As simple and pure as this substance is, it is one of the most important factors of well-being. Water helps transport nutrients throughout the body. It aids in digestion, blood circulation, and the elimination of waste. Drink eight glasses of purified water every day for healthy skin.
What to Avoid
It is very important to include plenty of fruits, vegetables, healthy oils, and grains in a diet for healthy skin. It is also essential to avoid, or at least minimize, the foods that may be causing skin problems in the first place. Avoid:
- Processed, packaged food products
- Fried food
- Red meat, or at least consume in moderation
- Sugary foods
- White flour products
- Hydrogenated oils
- Soft drinks
- Ice cream
- Hard cheeses
Knowing how to improve your complexion is as simple as knowing what to eat and what not to eat. While troubled skin will not disappear overnight, it will gradually reach a state of beautiful, glowing balance.
Balch, Phyllis, CNC. “Prescription for Nutritional Healing, 4th Edition.” (The Penguin Group, 2006).
Page, Linda. “Healthy Healing: A Guide to Self-Healing for Everyone, 11th Edition” (Traditional Wisdom, 2003).
photo by: Tanais Fox (CC/flickr) https://www.flickr.com/photos/tanais/2706705389/