Every part of your health that can be controlled with diet and exercise is important at The Worx in Alexandria, VA. In the past, we’ve focused on weight loss, feeling good, building strength and improving your overall health. It’s time to focus on the body’s largest organ, the skin, and how the food you eat can make a difference. Just like all fitness and dietary programs are different because each person is unique, there’s no one perfect diet for everyone. Instead, you have to find a diet for your skin type.
The first step is to identify the type of skin you have.
You may use lotions and other beauty products on the skin, but beautiful skin starts from within. In fact, all the magic creams may actually prevent you from identifying your skin type. Wash your face thoroughly and don’t use any products. Instead, wait an hour or two and examine your skin. If it feels tight and has some red, flaky patches, it’s probably dry. If there’s oil that is just in some areas, like around the nose, but dry other areas, it’s a combination. If you can put a tissue on your face any place and it shows signs of oil or shiny everywhere, it’s oily. The more visible the pores, the oilier the skin.
Dry skin needs more oil and maybe more hydration.
Are you drinking enough water? If not, you may be adding to the problem of flaky, dry skin. Besides including more water in your diet, increase juicy fruits, like oranges, grapes and watermelon. You need some healthy oil in your diet, too. Add some avocado or salmon for starters. Increase your food with vitamin A and vitamin C, which can add to skin’s dryness, like red bell pepper, broccoli and spinach. It’s not all about what you eat, but also about what you shouldn’t. Avoid alcohol and drinks with caffeine, both can be dehydrating.
If your skin is oily, don’t immediately eliminate oils.
It’s not always oil that makes your skin oily. In fact, healthy oil can actually help it with anti-inflammatory properties. Again, avocado, salmon and flaxseed are good choices. Avoid refined carbohydrates, especially those with added sugar. Keep fried foods to a minimum or ditch them altogether. Focus on eating whole grains, rather than refined carbs and reduce the amount of red meat in your diet.
For combination skin, taking the healthiest food from both the diet recommendations for oily skin and those for dry skin is beneficial. Processed carbohydrates cause inflammation and contribute to problems with combination skin.
If you have acne prone skin, you have oily skin with inflammation and bacteria. Vitamin C is important, so oranges are great. Zinc can also help prevent acne. Consider adding shellfish, chicken and pumpkin seeds to your diet.
While reducing the amount of sugar, unhealthy fat and dairy in a diet, or eliminating it entirely can help with acne prone skin, Greek yogurt may actually help the skin. Everyone is different, so experiment a bit.
If you want more vibrant skin, increase antioxidants, like lycopene in your diet. Lycopene is found in tomatoes. Eating food rich in collagen, such as bone broth, will slow the development of wrinkles.