When it comes to clear skin, food should always be one of the pillars to getting your skin where you want it. What you put in your body has a huge impact on how your skin glows. The old adage goes “you are what you eat”, and I couldn’t agree more with that. When it comes down to it, the energy we put in our bodies (aka calories from food and drink) breaks down and is digested and (hopefully) assimilated by our digestive system and becomes new and regenerated cell, basically the essence of who we are. If we feed our bodies with processed foods that are unrecognizable because their genetic imprint is no longer something found in nature, then how can we expect our skin to glow from the inside out? Our bodies understand the DNA and genes of whole, unproccessed foods and can therefore break them down and use them efficiently and effectively to our skin’s benefit!
If we want to glow from the inside out, we should keep in mind some important and crucial goals to strive for when it comes to overall health, including
- Getting our gut health to a thriving state
- Balancing hormones, especially those reproductive ones that can contribute to acne
- Clearing out the liver of excess toxins
- Enhancing our immune system
With these in mind, we are sharing 13 different foods that can help you achieve these goals to help you get that glow from the inside out:
Berries are simply loaded with nutrients. They are high in vitamins A and C, and jam packed with antioxidants like flavonoids. Blueberries in particular are the best berry for skin health because of their anthocyanin content, this antioxidant is known to boost collagen synthesis and protect against the rate at which collagen breaks down. Along with the antioxidants, they contain a healthy amount of fiber, these nutrients work together to rid the body of toxins and help to improve a health gut microbiome. Berries are highly anti-inflammatory and are even helpful in regulating blood sugar levels. However, make sure your berries are either organic or wild! Non-organic blueberries contain a high level of pesticides. The thin skin allows the chemicals to enter the fruit's flesh. Buying blueberries organic is the safest option. Conventional blueberries contain 52 pesticide chemicals.
Leafy greens are JAM PACKED with vitamins, minerals, and phytochemicals that are essential for our bodies (and skin) to be the healthiest they can be. Leafy greens contain a rich amount of Vitamin A, which assists in flushing out toxins, and strengthening the skin’s protective tissues. They also contain Vitamin E, which will help protect skin from free radicals. Leafy greens contain properties that can help regenerate and repair cells, boost hydration, and even protect against sun-damage. Cruciferous vegetables have been strongly studied and show to help eliminate excess hormones from the blood stream. Moral of the story, eat your chard and kale, folks.
Bone broth is a nutrient powerhouse that supports overall health. When made properly, bone broth contains the collagen and gelatin from the bones of the animals used. Drinking or consuming bone broth is known to help the tissues of the gut to heal and promotes an overall healthier gut microbiome. Bone broth is also high in the amino acid glycine, which help to support the production of collagen, leading to a firmer complexion and reduction in fine lines and wrinkles.
Probiotics are well-known to help and support an overall healthy gut. Probiotic foods are a whole foods way to easily integrate probiotics into your gut. Some examples of great probiotic foods are sauerkraut, kimchi, plain yogurt (no flavors or colors added), kefir, tempeh, natto, miso, and soy sauce. These foods are filled with gut friendly bacteria that help your gut’s microbiome to thrive. And it is important to remember that a healthy gut is key to clear skin!
Prebiotic foods are foods that feed your probiotics. Resistant starches are the best kind of prebiotic foods, these include cooked and cooled potatoes, green bananas, plantains, beans and legumes, oats, and more. Other foods that are highly prebiotic are garlic, leeks, onions, asparagus, jerusalem artichokes, flaxseeds, chicory root, cocoa, and apples. These are types of foods that allow your good bacteria to grow and thrive in your gut, so be sure to get plenty of them each day.
Sweet potatoes are high in several skin supporting vitamins and antioxidants. One being vitamin C which supports the production of collagen in our bodies. Another is beta carotene, which is a precursor to Vitamin A and once consumed, our bodies convert it into an active form of Vitamin A, aka retinol. This vitamin is crucial for skin cell growth and reproduction.
Healthy fats are an important part in any balanced, healthy diet. They particularly play a roll in skin health when it comes to the integrity of the skin. Healthy fats, including extra virgin olive oil, grass-fed butter, coconut oil, and ghee to name a few, contain important constituents that help to regenerate and structurally form skin cells. Healthy fats also help the body in achieving balanced hormone levels and healthy cholesterol levels.
Pasture raised eggs have important skin healing nutrients like Vitamin E, Vitamin D, Vitamin A, and omega-3 fatty acids. Each of these ingredients play key roles in skin health, skin cell regeneration, and photoprotection of the skin.
Raw carrots have recently made their debut as one of the best foods to help reduce excess estrogen due to the unique fiber structures within this root vegetable. These fibers can block the reabsorption of excess estrogen in the intestines and clean out the intestines because of their antibacterial and antifungal properties, leading to a healthier environment for our gut bacteria to grow and thrive in.
Ground flaxseeds are a really great addition to your day if you are aiming for clear skin. These fiber rich powerhouses are high in healthy fats and support healthy hormone balance by eliminating excess estrogen (xeno-estrogens coming from the environment and toxin-filled products and foods) from the body.
Brazil nuts are a great source of selenium. Selenium is a micronutrient that is crucial for regulated hormonal health. This mineral supports detoxification by increasing our bodies innate ability to produce glutathione, our body’s most important detoxification compound. It also supports overall thyroid health and blood sugar stability which is important for overall hormonal balance.
Wild fatty fish like salmon, sardines, mackerel and anchovies are a great source of omega-3 essential fatty acids. These fatty acids are crucial to the inner workings of inflammation reduction in our bodies. Omega-3s also provide the building blocks for our bodies to produce efficient and healthy cell membranes that enable cells to take in wanted nutrients and expel unwanted waste products in the system.
*Wild* is an important part about the fish you eat. Farmed fish lived in an energetically stressful state and can be filled with toxins and dyes that we don’t want to put in our bodies!
Grassfed meat can be a very rich source of several vitamins that are not as easily bioavailable in other foods. The more phytochemical rich landscape of the grazing of the animal, the richer the meat’s nutrient profile is, meaning that red meat raised on grains have a much less rich nutrient profile. Grassfed meat provides skin-glowing nutrients like high-quality protein, bio-available iron, zinc, and vitamin b12, omega-3 essential fatty acids, conjugated linoleic acid, and the precursors for vitamins A and E. Grassfed meat is also more likely to be free of unwanted hormones and antibiotics that grain-fed meat can contain, not to mention, cattle raised on grass are far better for the environment than those raised on grain.
So what are you waiting for?
Jot down that clear skin grocery list and head out to your local farmer's market of health food store!