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Skincare and Diet

Technically speaking, skin is the body’s largest organ. Maybe that’s why there is so much time and effort put into ways to keep it healthy. Creams, injections, surgeries – these are some of the ways people try to keep their skin healthy and young looking.

However, there’s an obvious – and much more natural way to help keep your skin healthy, and that is the food you eat. Your daily diet has a tremendous impact on the health of your skin, and ultimately your entire body.

At Longevity Skincare, state and nationally certified Doctor or Oriental Medicine, Dr. Crum recommends to her patients a healthy diet in conjunction with several other natural, non-invasive treatments at her clinic to help keep your skin healthy and vibrant.

Colorful Foods Are Key

Eating orange-red vegetables full of beta-carotene is at the top of the list. Our bodies convert beta-carotene into vitamin A, which acts as an antioxidant, preventing cell damage and premature aging. In the case of vitamin A, you also get anti-acne benefits – vitamin A has been used in acne medications for many years.

Vitamin C is also a great skin-care source, and is found is numerous beauty creams. Vitamin C spurs your body’s production of collagen, a protein that forms the basic structure of your skin. When collagen breaks down it can leave your skin saggy.

Thus, consuming extra vitamin C via foods like oranges, grapefruits, tomatoes and cherries can help tighten the skin and prevent wrinkles.

A Few of the Options

These are just a few of the fruits and vegetables to include in your diet for healthier skin:

  • Carrots
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Spinach
  • Strawberries
  • Oranges
  • Tomatoes
  • Kale
  • Cherries

Take It From the Experts

“I recommend going for as much variety and color as possible in your diet,” says Dr. Doris Day, a clinical assistant professor of dermatology at New York University School of Medicine.

“Try snacking on blueberries, strawberries, grapefruit, kale, spinach, and different kinds of peppers.” Day also suggests adding a little tomato paste, which contains an antioxidant called lycopene, to stir-fried vegetables, brown rice, or quinoa.

Furthermore, the University of Maryland Medical Center suggests that many types of fish and shellfish can also work wonders for the skin, especially oysters and fatty fish like salmon. The primary nutrients that make fish so good for your complexion are zinc and especially, omega-3 fatty acids. Increasing omega-3 intake can reduce dryness and inflammation. Inflammation can cause skin to age faster, and research shows that getting too little omega-3 may contribute to inflammatory disorders like eczema and psoriasis

“Omega-3 fatty acids help keep the top, outer layer of the skin strong and intact so that external toxins and pollutants are kept out,” says David E. Bank, MD, director of the Center for Dermatology, Cosmetic and Laser Surgery in Mount Kisco, N.Y.

How Much to Eat

The Mayo Clinic suggests the following:

  • Consume a sufficient amount of fruits and vegetables while staying within energy needs. Two cups of fruit and two-and-a-half cups of vegetables per day are recommended for a reference 2,000-calorie intake, with higher or lower amounts depending on the calorie level.
  • Choose a variety of fruits and vegetables each day. In particular, select from all five vegetable subgroups (dark green, orange, legumes, starchy vegetables, and other vegetables) several times a week.
  • Consume 3 or more ounce-equivalents of whole-grain products per day, with the rest of the recommended grains coming from enriched or whole-grain products. In general, at least half the grains should come from whole grains.
  • Consume 3 cups per day of fat-free or low-fat milk or equivalent milk products.

Don’t Forget Fluids

Well-moisturized skin is somewhat less prone to developing of wrinkles. Drinking plenty of fluids throughout the day ensures proper hydration of the body and helps reduce skin dryness. Experts usually recommend drinking six to eight glasses of water a day. Coffee and sodas are not a good substitute for water because they contain caffeine, which is a diuretic, i.e., a substance promoting the excretion of water via urine. Also, do not drink too much fluid before going to bed. This may cause morning puffiness and excessively stretch your skin.

It’s OK to Go Nuts!

In addition to fruits and vegetables, Longevity Skincare’s Dr. Crum suggests adding nuts –especially almonds – to your diet when considering the health of your skin. The vitamin E in nuts combats skin-aging, especially protecting skin from sun damage due to UV-sunlight-generated free radicals. Vitamin E also tends to help skin hold in moisture, relieving dryness and making skin look younger.

The Flip Side

On the flip side, some foods seem to be associated with skin damage. For example, some research suggests that a diet high in processed or refined carbohydrates and unhealthy fats promotes skin aging.

Let Longevity Skincare Be Your Guide

In addition to helping you create an ideal diet for  healthy skin, Dr. Crum offers several other options for skincare at her clinic – including LHE Microphototherapy, Microdermabrasion, LED Light Therapy, Clear Touch Light and more.

To make an appointment with Dr. Crum, call (505) 263-7248 today.