“You are what you eat,” as the saying goes, and nowhere is this more true than when it comes to your skin. If you want glowing, blemish-free skin, you’ve got to pay attention to what you put in your mouth. With that in mind, here are great foods for clear skin.
Water, Water, Water
Not technically a food, but water is the single most important thing you can consume if you want clear skin. Adequate water intake promotes circulation, allowing blood to bring vital nutrients to the skin, and also rids the body of waste products via the kidneys.
If you dislike drinking plain water – and many people do – up your intake of high-water content foods like watermelon, cantaloupe, and cucumber.
Strawberries, blueberries, and raspberries are high in antioxidants, powerful molecules that fight the free radicals doing damage to your skin, specifically the antioxidant Vitamin C. Adding a handful of colorful berries to your breakfast is an easy (and tasty) way to support your skin.
That distinctive orange color comes from beta carotene, which also gives carrots their orange color. The body turns beta carotene into Vitamin A, which helps your skin heal itself and stay hydrated.
Avocados have been shown to reduce inflammation, which is a cause of dull skin. The primary type of fat found in avocados, monosaturated fat, is used for healthy cell development.
It sometimes seems like green tea is touted as the cure-all for every ailment known to man, and it’s hard to believe the hype. But when it comes to skin, green tea might be all that. It’s packed with polyphenols, another type of antioxidant class. Plus, its anti-inflammatory compounds help calm the skin and can reduce the appearance of rosacea.
Lentils and chickpeas are good sources of zinc, which is important for cell production and may help regulate oil levels in the skin, keeping it clear. Other good sources of zinc include shellfish and red meat.
Milk Fortified with Vitamin D
Vitamin D does a lot of great things in the body, including contributing to the growth and repair of skin cells. If you’re dairy-free, look for other sources of the vitamin in foods like fortified soy and nut milks, egg yolks, and fatty fish like salmon and mackerel.
Eating Fresh and Whole
All the items on this list, and their alternatives, have something in common – they aren’t processed. Reduce the number of foods you eat that have been heavily processed or contain ingredients you can’t pronounce, eat more of the foods for clear skin on this list, and you’ll be on your way to better, brighter skin in no time.