09 FOODS YOU SHOULD EAT MORE OF THIS WINTER TO PREVENT DRY, DULL SKIN
Dry, flaky, cracked, irritated, inflamed—winter isn't exactly a happy skin season. Blame the wind chill outside and the dry air inside. Thankfully, the right foods can fix your winter skin woes. Here, 09 complexion-boosting foods that heal skin from the inside out.
1. Pomegranate Seeds
Packed with polyphenol antioxidants that protect against damage from the sun's rays, fight inflammation, and boost blood flow, these potent seeds also contain ellagic acid, an antioxidant that's been shown to reduce collagen breakdown for fewer wrinkles.
2. Sweet Potatoes
Sweet potatoes are sweet for winter skin. The root veg packs a double dose of skin-protecting nutrients, with off-the-chart amounts of both vitamin A and beta-carotene. Vitamin A aids in skin repair, while beta carotene strengthens skin's protective barrier, helping to moisturize and plump up skin cells.
It may look all wrinkly, but the leafy green has the opposite effect on skin. Just one cup of the raw stuff supplies a day's worth of both vitamin A (for skin renewal) and vitamin C (for boosted collagen and firmer skin). A study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that those who ate a diet rich in vitamin C had fewer wrinkles and less skin dryness.
4. Whole Eggs
Packed with nutrients, eggs contain skin-boosting vitamin A and E, as well as vitamin B5 (pantothenic acid). Pantothenate aids in the production of keratinocytes, cells that support healthy skin function and protective barriers. Eggs also deliver inflammation-fighting vitamin D and sulfur for collagen synthesis. Opt for Omega-3 enhanced eggs for even more glow.
Citrus not only adds zing to foods, it can pep up your complexion. Oranges, lemons, grapefruit, and limes are loaded with vitamin C, a power-packed antioxidant that can give your skin a fountain-of-youth glow. Vitamin C is known to plump up collagen and put a sheen on the complexion, plus it can help fade brown spots and erase sun damage.
Walnuts are loaded with alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), plant-based omega-3 fatty acids known to strengthen skin membranes by locking in moisture and protecting skin cells. They also contain almost twice the antioxidants of other nuts to fight free radical damage and premature aging of skin.
These slimy suckers are the best food source of zinc (a single serving delivers nearly 500% of your daily needs), a nutrient that promotes cell reproduction and faster wound healing. Zinc also helps in the absorption of essential fatty acids that nourish the skin from the inside out and counters excess copper, which can trigger skin breakouts and broken capillaries. No wonder zinc deficiencies are linked to acne, eczema, and psoriasis.
8. Sunflower Seeds
A super source of vitamin E, sunflower seeds keep skin supple. They strengthen skin membranes for optimal hydration, plus protect against free radical and UV damage. A handful of the seeds also supply omega-6 fatty acids to stimulate skin growth, plus selenium to fight skin infections.
Salmon's standout skin nutrient: omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-3 fatty acids can help on a cellular level, balancing the lipid membrane to help skin hold more moisture. The cold-water fish is also one of the few food sources of vitamin D, an anti-inflammatory that can help with acne, eczema, and red, irritated skin.