What exactly comes to your mind when you think of good skin or healthy hair? Exfoliating, moisturising, face packs etc right? But does it ever occur to you that how your skin looks is usually the product of what you feed your body?
"You are what you eat"
Here's the reason why diet has a huge impact on your skin:
Your skin cells require renewal every day and it's a long process including many steps which require nutrients from food to repair and rebuild. Nutrients like vitamins and minerals help in maintaining and repairing the skin. Proteins help in restoring collagen that basically maintains the elasticity of the skin.
So no amount of products is going to fix your skin if you have a crash diet or eat a lot of unhealthy processed foods. There are a few simple food habits that can help you get a clear glow on your skin.
Foods rich in vitamin C like citrus fruits, broccoli, green leafy vegetables etc can have a calming effect on your skin. Its antioxidative effect protects the skin from oxidative stress and decreases the damage done by UV light. Tomato is a great source for Vitamin C & K which is a known superfood when it comes to healthy skin.
Nuts or dry fruits can make extremely healthy snacks when you want to munch on something light. Nuts contain healthy fats like omega-3 fatty acids that have anti-inflammatory properties. They can also lend your skin a fresh, dewy glow especially if you focus on foods like walnuts, almonds, flax seeds etc. Lay off of processed snacks such as chips & nachos for a while, if you're a snacky person go for something like whole wheat nut cookies or dark chocolate covered almonds (and make sure not to binge on them).
Soy is high in protein and Vitamin C which boosts the collagen production that helps in renewing dead skin and maintains the elasticity of the skin. Include soy in your regular diet for 6 months, it will help strengthen your nails and hair as well. It can be consumed in many forms such as soya beans, soy flour, soy milk, tofu etc.
Foods that have a high glycemic load can cause acne breakouts in some people. Sugar also increases inflammation in the body that causes the production of the stress hormone 'cortisol'which in turn increases skin's oil production. So you might want to find some ways to control your sugar cravings if you want your acne to go away.
Now this might be a bummer for people whose life depends on dairy products like milk, yoghurt, cheese etc. because they contribute to breaking out of the skin as well. Dairy cause skin to produce excess sebum which leads to more clogged pores and acne.People with acne-prone skin can go for dairy alternatives like soy butter, tofu, soy milk or almond milk etc.
There is more to avocado than just amazingly whipped guacamole. Avocado is loaded with healthy fats that gives the skin nourishment and keeps it from drying out and getting flaky. Avocado also promotes thicker and longer hair growth. It contains Vitamin C, Vitamin A, biotin & Vitamin E among others that is required for fostering hair growth. There are many ways to eat an avocado - By seasoning them with various herbs or just salt & pepper, mashing and topping it on a toast, with scrambled eggs and many more.
Just like other organ cells, skin cells also require water to function properly. Water helps in maintaining optimum moisture for the skin and prevents it from losing its elasticity. Water increases the metabolic rate of the body that helps in flushing out toxins from the body. This lends you a healthy and glowing skin.
Starting a healthy diet can be really difficult at first because giving up on sugars and processed snacks take a hell lot of efforts. But you need to give it a start by taking baby steps and making small changes in your diet until they settle in and become a habit. Once you do that, not only will you notice a change in your skin but also in your overall body health.