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May 23, 2017 2 min read

By Ana Reisdorf, MS, RD

Although a healthy diet is commonly associated with better health and prevention of chronic diseases such as diabetes and heart disease, did you know that certain foods can also improve your complexion? According to David Bank, a dermatologist from Mount Kisco, NY, there are more studies today that indicate a link between specific nutrients and skin health, such as wrinkle reduction, acne prevention and overall radiance.

Dermatologist Jessica Wu from Los Angeles points out that certain foods can cause acne, hormone imbalances and inflammation that ages skin. It is therefore important to eat the right foods to improve your complexion.

6 Superfoods for Healthy Skin

  1. Strawberries – Strawberries contain larger amounts of vitamin C than oranges. Research has shown individuals who eat Vitamin C-rich foods have reduced age-related dry skin and fewer wrinkles  compared with those who don’t eat these foods. Fine lines in the skin are caused by free radicals in the body that damage cells and collagen. Vitamin C fights off free radicals, reducing fine lines. A great way to get a healthy dose of Vitamin C is to add strawberries to a smoothie.
  2. Green Tea – Green tea stops inflammation, prevents sunburn and slows down DNA damage — all of which lead to better-looking skin. This is because green tea is rich in antioxidants. Adding a squeeze of citrus juice boosts the impact of green tea’s antioxidants, causing them to remain in the body longer and allowing you to reap more of their benefits.
  3. Dark Chocolate – Dark chocolate can reduce roughness and scaliness, making skin firmer and more supple. This is due to the flavanols and antioxidants in dark chocolate, which improve circulation and hydrate your skin.
  4. Tomatoes – According to a 2008 UK study, people who ate 5 tablespoons of tomato paste accompanied with a tablespoon of olive oil for 12 weeks experienced a 33% increase in protection from sunburn, compared with a group that ate olive oil without tomato paste. The effects were attributed to lycopene, an antioxidant that neutralizes harmful molecules and procollagen, which gives the skin its structure. Procollagen leads to skin aging and lack of elasticity.
  5. Water – Drinking water keeps skin moist and supple, meaning any wrinkles and fine lines become less noticeable. Water also removes toxins and help cells absorb nutrients, which will keep your skin glowing.
  6. Olive Oil – In a 2012 research study, the diets of 1,264 women were analyzed. Those who consumed more than 2 teaspoons of olive oil per day showed 31% fewer signs of aging, compared with those who ate less than 1 teaspoon. The monounsaturated fatty acids in olive oil are believed to protect the skin from photo-aging.

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