We’ll let you in on a little secret: Having glowing, radiant skin isn’t simply a matter of using quality skincare products. Yes, the right products can and will make a profound difference. But if you’re not supporting – and supplementing – the hard work of an amazing cream (like our Bio.digital Perfection Moisturizer) with a good diet, your skin will show it. This is because your skin is a reflection of what is happening on the inside – and if you’re feeding it fast food, it’ll probably look like it is being nourished by a diet of processed meats, greasy French fries, and sugary sodas… yuck.
This is why it’s so important to feed your gorgeous skin with equally gorgeous foods. Ahead, we’re sharing some of our favorites – read on!
Image via The First Mess
Colorful veggies and berries.
Want great skin? Eat the rainbow – and we don’t mean Skittles, either. Because of their high antioxidant content, colorful foods are amazing for your skin. For instance, orange-tinted foods like carrots and sweet potatoes are loaded in beta-carotene, which gets converted into natural retinol when consumed. (And as many of us know, retinol is pretty much the hot anti-aging ingredient.) Furthermore, berries like raspberries, blueberries, and strawberries are jam-packed with healing antioxidants, nutrients, and vitamins. These include Vitamin C – which helps protect the skin from free radicals – and ellagic acid, which prevents the breakdown of all-important collagen.
Water – all day, everyday.
Don’t roll your eyes at this one – this recommendation is a cliché for a reason. For one, drinking plenty of water helps the body – and your skin – expel toxins. In fact, cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy are often told to drink a gallon of water a day to flush out toxins from their systems. Yes, that’s extreme – but it’s illustrative of the healing power of this life-giving element. Furthermore, water does the all-important job of keeping skin hydrated. In this regard, consistency and quantity is key: Simply chugging a glass of water won’t suddenly make you glowing if you’re chronically dehydrated. This is because water goes first to nourish your essential organs, reaching the skin cells last. So get on the water train and start drinking up regularly – we recommend drinking half of your weight in ounces per day and consuming more if you’re very active.
Dark, leafy greens.
Talk about bang for your buck: Dark, leafy greens essentially provide your body with every single micronutrient it could ever need. When it comes to your skin, they’re great choice because of their ridiculously high antioxidant levels. These antioxidants – vitamin A, C, and K, to name a few – help fight free radicals, combat acne, and repair damaged skin. We love kale and spinach for their high folate content. (FYI consuming plenty of folate has now been linked as a strategy for skin cancer prevention!)
Listen up: Eating healthy fat is not only critical to maintaining good health; it is key to having amazing skin, too. In particular, you want to ensure you’re eating plenty of essential fatty acids (EFAs), aka omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. They not only help your body produce healthy skin cells, they aid in the production of sebum, which helps keeps your skin hydrated. Aside from all the good that do, if you’re not consuming enough of these types of fats, your skin can be more sensitive to sunlight, more prone to irritation and inflammation, and can even be more susceptible things like breakouts and skin conditions. Good choices include olive oil, avocados, wild caught salmon, walnuts, and coconut oil.
Bacteria, in the form of fermented foods.
Increasingly, research has shown that our gut bacteria – also known as our microbiome – is the key to good health, influencing everything from our immune system’s functioning to how well our digestive tract works. The positive impact of good bacteria has consequences for our skin, too: More and more research points to the connection between healthy gut bacteria and healthy skin. For example, one study found that participants who drank probiotic-enriched drink saw 38% decrease in inflammatory acne. To get your bacteria fix, we recommend eating fermented foods like kimchee, miso, kefir, or sipping on some kombucha.
(And pssst -- don't forget to keep slathering on eXO Face.)