Raise your hand if you or someone you love is insecure about their skin? ME, me, me!
For me, it’s both. I have sweet friends who suffer from eczema and I have a close cousin who suffers from psoriasis (and I mean suffers). And for me, I had insecurities about the cystic acne along my jaw line. For years, I was told it was hormonal. Which, it may have been. That same doctor diagnosed me with polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) and I will tell you that story another time. But, would you believe me if I told you that my skin clears up when I eat a clean diet? And here is why.
Let’s define 5 key nutrients that are necessary for healthy skin.
1. Vitamin C: Think of vitamin C as the power behind collagen and detoxification. Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant that protects your body from free radicals and supports your systemic detoxification pathways.
2. Vitamin A: Each layer of epidermis (skin) benefits from vitamin A. I love this nutrient because it can combat collagen breakdown. We often see collagen damage due to excessive sun exposure & vitamin A can protect us from this. Vitamin A can also support your skin from being dry and itchy.
Have you heard of Keratosis Pilaris? You may recognize it as a skin condition, most often seen on the back of the upper arms, that resembles small pimples. They appear as tiny, hard bumps and usually look red but are typically not itchy. Vitamin A deficiency has been linked to this condition.
3. Zinc: I love Zinc for so many reasons but as it pertains to skin, zinc can promote healing after an injury. Zinc is a mineral that also behaves as an antioxidant and can protect our skin from UV damage. Did you know that a zinc deficiency can reveal itself by looking like eczema? If moisturizers or steroid creams don’t help, ask your doctor about zinc.
4. Omega-3 Fatty Acids: Think of healthy fats as the ingredient that adds the moist, firm glow that we all desire. Ideally we would not have dry, wrinkled skin and omega-3 fatty acids have been shown to lower systemic inflammation. That puffiness or swelling we see in the mirror, will improve if systemic inflammation is reduced.
5. Vitamin E: Our cell walls need strength as they change through the years and vitamin E does just that. Vitamin E is a fat-soluble antioxidant that protects our skin from free radical damage and can reduce the appearance of erythema (superficial reddening of the skin).
Now, if we choose to spend a lot of money on products (don’t get me started on the chemicals added to a lot of these products) and supplements that contain these nutrients but over indulge in inflammatory foods, have we done our skin any good?
No. Too much sugar, gluten and/or dairy can impact how our body absorbs and utilizes nutrients. For me, dairy directly impacts my skin. As soon as I eliminate dairy, my skin clears up. With that elimination, plus adding foods that support health skin into my diet, my skin glows again.
Here are some ideas of foods that contain 5 key nutrients for healthy skin:
Vitamin E: avocados, extra virgin olive oil, dark leafy vegetables, almonds, hazelnuts
Vitamin A: eggs, carrots, sweet potatoes, mangoes, papayas
Zinc: legumes, eggs, meat
Omega-3 Fatty Acids: fatty fish, I personally love supplementing with Barlean’s Lemon Crème Fish Oil
Vitamin C: dark leafy greens, broccoli, cauliflower, red and yellow peppers
Just a reminder, this information is shared for educational purposes only. Always consult a doctor before implementing any changes in your diet or supplementation.
In Extraordinary Health,
Ready to function at your best? Dr. Byrne, with Phoenician Wellness Center, offers personalized solutions for your health needs.
Click here to schedule a complimentary health consultation to learn how we can help you achieve your optimal wellness.
Feel free to follow us on Instagram @phoenicianwellnesscenter_