Prior to the 1960s, if you sought help from a dermatologist for your acne you would have received dietary guidelines along with any topical treatments that may have been prescribed. This practice went out of vogue in the following decades when studies suggested there was no link between diet and problem skin.
Recent studies call the design of earlier research into question and suggest that perhaps we really are what we eat. As our body’s building blocks and the fuel that powers its every move, it makes sense that our food will affect how we look on the outside. So, try out these tips and start eating your way to clearer skin.
Antioxidant-rich foods are superheroes for our skin when it comes to acne prevention, minimizing sun damage, and diminishing the signs of aging. By concentrating on the outermost layer of your skin, antioxidants can neutralize free radicals before they wreak havoc on your complexion. Try snacking on strawberries, sipping on ever-trendy acai juice, or adding a handful of blueberries to your morning smoothie. You can even dose your skin directly by using coconut oil as an all-natural moisturizer.
Foods that are high in omega-3 fatty acids have anti-inflammatory properties that also help to prevent breakouts. Sardines, salmon, trout, mackerel, and herring are all good sources of this skin-loving powerhouses. Vegetarians can opt for walnuts, chia seeds, flax, or soybeans to get their dosage.
And don’t forget, when it comes to eating for clearer skin, what you don’t eat can be as important as what you do.
High-glycemic foods, such as refined flours and sugary treats are villainous for those of us with acne-prone skin. By causing insulin levels to spike, these foods limit your body’s ability to produce the proteins that attach to testosterone. Instead, it’s free to wander around your body and may lead to acne. Try reaching for whole grains and choosing low-glycemic sweeteners, such as coconut sugar or stevia.
Dairy is also guilty of boosting insulin and increasing hormone levels. In fact, a link has been found between the amount of milk consumed by adolescents and their likelihood of developing acne. Try minimizing your intake by using non-dairy milk in your coffee or sprinkling nutritional yeast on your pasta in place of Parmesan.
So, before you reach for the latest over-priced potion promising you perfect skin, experiment with how a few simple changes to your diet can get you glowing from the inside out.