Healthy Foods and the Good Skin Diet
Eating a variety of healthy foods, rich in vitamins and nutrients, really can improve the appearance of your skin.
Find out the roles that B vitamins, Vitamin C, Vitamin E, selenium and zinc play in your good skin diet.
B vitamins help convert calories into energy for skin metabolism and are components of enzymes that maintain normal skin function (including functioning of the oil-producing glands, which keep skin moist and smooth). That's why poor intake of almost any B vitamin can cause dry or scaly skin.
Best sources of B Vitamins Poultry, red meat, fish, bananas, tempeh, whole grains, brewer's yeast, peanut butter and eggs
When taken internally, this vitamin helps maintain collagen -- the underlying supporting structure of skin. But sun exposure (and stress) can drain vitamin C from the skin, leaving it vulnerable to damage from the environment (why anti-aging creams and sunscreens have been infused with this potent antioxidant).
Best Vitamin C Foods Citrus fruits and juices, kiwi, cantaloupe, strawberries, tomatoes, sweet peppers and green peas
Benefits of Vitamin E
This antioxidant helps slow the aging of skin cells by reducing the production of an enzyme called collagenase, which breaks down collagen, causing the skin to sag and wrinkle, according to a study in the journal Free Radical Biology & Medicine. And sun exposure can deplete vitamin E from the skin, making it more vulnerable to sun damage (why vitamin E is found in skin-care products from moisturizers to body washes).
Best sources of Vitamin E Salmon, legumes, extra-lean meat, almonds, leafy vegetables, and olive and sesame oils
The damaging effects of ultraviolet light are minimized by this antioxidant mineral, thereby reducing your risk for sunburn. In fact, low blood levels of selenium also increase your risk for skin cancer, say researchers at Texas Tech University in Lubbock.
Best sources of Selenium Tuna, wheat germ, sesame seeds and whole grains
This trace mineral helps maintain collagen and elastin fibers that give skin its firmness, helping to prevent sagging and wrinkles. It also links together amino acids that are needed for the formation of collagen -- essential in wound healing.
Foods High In Zinc Seafood, turkey, pork, soybeans and mushrooms