Let’s get back to the basics on how to maintain beautiful skin. Yes, good skin care products and treatments do make a difference in how great we look, but if we aren’t eating well and taking care of ourselves from the inside out, we won’t be able to sustain the youthful glow and nourished healthy look we all want in our skin.
For starters, its really important to drink plenty of good clean water. Half our body weight in ounces per day is what we should aim for. Water flushes the liver and the kidneys, our primary detoxification organs. The skin is our other detoxification organ. Sweating, whether through exercise, or a sauna, we can clean the skin by opening and unclogging our pores. Aim for lots of filtered water and a good sweat most days if you can!
Clean eating is crucial over the years to help maintain healthy skin and body. What should we try to stay away from? 1. Processed foods – processed foods are full of man-manipulated chemicals that are difficult for our bodies to breakdown and end up causing inflammation and weight gain (as these chemicals our body doesn’t know what to do with end up getting stored in our fat cells). 2. Sugar – try to decrease your sugar intake. This is SO HARD because sugar is so addictive! Sugar binds to proteins and fats in the body during digestion to create advanced glycation end products which are free radicals that reduce collagen and elastin in the skin, ultimately causing wrinkles. Sugar also feed bad bacteria and yeast in our gut, which can cause inflammation and show up in the skin as acne or puffiness. 3. Trans fats and many vegetable oils – these also promote inflammation.
We really should aim for a whole foods plant based diet. I’m not saying to be a vegetarian, just eat more plants! A variety of fruits and vegetables are going to give you an array of antioxidants to fight free radicals in our bodies.
Free radicals have seriously damaging effects on our skin, so we need foods full of antioxidants. We expose ourselves to free radicals when the sun hits our skin, and when alcohol, sugar, smoke, or other toxins enter the body. Vitamin C, E and A are the most common antioxidants; green tea is packed with them, and they are found in abundance in fruits and vegetables. Cosmetic companies are combing the globe for new antioxidants in plants, like acai berries or rose hips, to put into their topical products. Yes, antioxidants work when applied to the skin (in the right formulations found topically), but do not forget to EAT the fruits and vegetables as well. Eating our fruits and vegetables, as well as applying them to our skin with good products containing them, is going to give you the most antioxidant power.
Our whole food plant based diet should also contain some healthy fats and adequate protein. Fats help build cells, produce hormones, give us energy and allow us to absorb fat soluble vitamins. Great choices are avocados, walnuts, salmon, unheated olive oil.
Lastly in this beauty detox blog, we are all pretty “overfed” in this country we live in. It’s a blessing… and a curse. We all could probably benefit from missing a meal now and then, and really start thinking about what foods are healing and truly good for us. Our bodies have a remarkable capacity to heal if given digestive rest every so often … followed by healing food and clean pure water.
Have a great week!