Most people suffer from a skin ailment at least once in their lives. Whether it’s mild acne or severe psoriasis, sometimes your solution might be a diet change. While not all problems are eradicated by food alone, many symptoms can be reduced and healthier skin can be achieved by incorporating certain items into your diet. Reduce your intake of processed foods and consider these sustainably grown options.
Brussels sprouts, spinach, kale, and cauliflower make up only some of the tastiest and beneficial leafy greens out there. They contain vitamins and minerals your body needs to function properly. Like many fruits, these veggies provide vitamin B, C, and K. They also contain essential minerals like zinc, iron, calcium, phosphorous, magnesium, and potassium. If you consume a healthy amount of leafy greens, you can expect lower cholesterol, improved cardiovascular health, better digestion, and much more. Healthy digestion and a healthy heart ensure nutrients are delivered to the skin regularly to make it stronger and more vibrant. Improving your diet is one of the best natural remedies for acne, and packing your diet with veggies is sure to improve your complexion.
These little seeds pack a powerful punch of nutrients that help combat acne; they’re especially known for its high levels of Omega 3 fatty acids. When it comes to vegan Omega 3 sources, flax seeds are hard to beat. Omega 3s are especially important to skin because they provide a healthy fat that keeps skin firm while decreasing inflammation. It’s also a great source of fiber and helps combat diabetes, arthritis, and heart disease.
Sweet potatoes are a yummy source of vitamins A, B6, and C. These vitamins boost the immune system, which can help guard skin against disease and irritation. They also contain manganese, a trace mineral that helps the body form connective tissue, build bones, help clot blood, and create sex hormones. The chemical properties of sweet potatoes regulate blood sugar, which can help keep acne at bay. Purple-fleshed sweet potatoes also have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory contents that can help reduce the damage done by free radicals.
Sustainably-grown berries are bursting with antioxidants that help fight free radicals. Blueberries, strawberries, blackberries, raspberries, and goji berries contain varying levels of vitamins that help combat disease and inflammation. Antioxidants may combat or reverse signs of aging by keeping skin firm and rejuvenated. When the skin is firm and plump, it can also reduce the visibility of wrinkles.
Green tea is another antioxidant-rich food that helps boost circulation and help fight signs of aging. One of the most powerful antioxidants contained in green tea leaves is Epigallocatechin Gallate, or EGCG. This compound has been used to treat various diseases and can help reduce irritation such as rashes or hives. The tea water also boosts hydration and promotes circulation.
Nuts and Legumes
The high protein and fat content of nuts and legumes keep you full and help promote the construction of new skin cells and healthy fats, which can keep your skin plump and firm. Unfortunately, some of your favorite nuts may not be as sustainable as others. Walnuts and seeds like almonds require much more water to produce. However, peanuts are still one of the most sustainable legumes to consume, as well as pecans and Brazil nuts. Be wary of other nuts like cashews, because although they’re sustainable, many cashew processors in Vietnam and other countries have been accused of human rights violations. When in doubt, look for nuts that are labeled “fair trade.”
Vegan Dark Chocolate
Chocolate isn’t all bad. Indulge in a square of vegan dark chocolate every now and again to improve your skin. Like other foods on this list, chocolate helps boost energy and help your cardiovascular system through antioxidants. The key is to find chocolate low in sugar. Chocolate high in sugar can make skin worse, causing irritation and contributing to acne. Dark chocolate high in cocoa and low in sugar is best for your skin. Choose sustainably grown and fair trade chocolate products.
Tomatoes work wonders for the skin, whether they’re ingested or applied topically. The acidic properties of tomatoes help rid skin of dead skin cells, and serve as an astringent to shrink pores and reduce shine. Have a nasty sunburn? Apply crushed tomatoes to your skin to instantly soothe and cool burnt areas. When consumed, tomatoes release vitamins A, C, and K to boost your immune system and make skin firmer.