5 Nutrients for Healthy Skin

Hello everyone, I hope you're all still doing well. Today I'm continuing on with another skin health blog post - focussing on the nutrients required for glowing, healthy skin. In this post I'll be discussing 5 nutrients, their mechanisms that make them useful for skin health - and what foods you can find them in.

I'm all about using food as medicine so won't be going through any specific brands of nutrients - I think if you're skins looking a little lack lustre, improving your diet first will definitely give you great benefit.

If you are lacking in one of these nutrients, it's best you see your health care practitioner to get some tests done before supplementing with anything, as you could potentially displace other nutrients by self prescribing.

With that being said, here are the 5 nutrients you need for healthy, glowing skin. 

 

Vitamin A 

Is required for cell differentiation (that is, cells becoming more 'specialised' kinds of cells), growth and development of the epithelium (tissue that can be found lining inside (lungs, digestive tract etc) and outside of our body - our skin), as well as keratin formation (keratin is a fibrous protein that helps our skins cells to adhere to each other and also provides protection). Vitamin A is also an antioxidant, immuno protective and photoprotective.

Food Sources:

cod liver oil, beef liver, yellow / orange fruits and vegetables (sweet potato, capsicum, carrots, mango, cantaloupe, pumpkin, apricots etc ) as well as some of your dark leafy greens like spinach, broccoli, kale.

 

Vitamin C

Is an antioxidant, and combines with iron hydroxylate, lysine and proline to form collagen. Collagen as you probably know is integral to skin structure. It aids skin strength and elasticity, and loss of collagen is associated with wrinkles and skin ageing.

Food Sources:

Kiwi fruit, strawberries, capsicum, broccoli, tomatoes, orange, grapefruit, and even brussels sprouts, broccoli and spinach.

 

Omega 3

Without enough omega 3 in your diet, you skin will experience scaling, and the cell membrane integrity may also be lost - resulting in water loss and dehydrated skin. Omega 3 is also another antioxidant; and if you didn't already know antioxidants are needed to 'remove' free radicals. Free radicals cause oxidative stress within the body, which can damage cells and organs and also lead to ageing.

Food Sources:

avocado, oil fish like salmon, trout, herring, walnuts, flaxseeds, and chia seeds.  

Zinc

Zinc is needed in order for the body to utilise essential fatty acids (such as the omega 3 mentioned above). Zinc also helps modulate the immune system, and inhibits lipid peroxidation ( process in which free radicals 'steal' an electron from lipids (fats) within the cell membrane, resulting in damage - this is especially relevant for our skin and is definitely something you want to prevent )

Food Sources:

Meat ( particularly red ), Shellfish ( Oysters, shrimp, mussels etc ), legumes, nuts, seeds and dairy products ( milk and cheese ). 

The B Vitamins 

Deficiency in the B vitamins will have you feeling not so great, and skin wise you may see lesions, peeling, rashes, acne and any wounds not healing properly. They are essential for cell growth, development and general functioning.

Food Sources:

Whole grains, eggs, meat and dairy, legumes, seeds and nuts, and dark leafy vegetables - along with some fruits.

 

Please note this is not an extensive list, and again if you are having skin issues your best bet is to see your own health practitioner in order to have a plan tailored to your needs. This list is for people wanting to optimise their skin health, promote youthful and glowing skin - rather than 'fix' specific issues.

 

As always I hope you enjoyed this blog post, and if you found it useful be sure to leave a comment below

kindest,

Sarah

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