Sunday, October 22 2017

Beauty

Eat Your Way to Gorgeous Skin

Varun Katyal
 
Our diet not only affects our overall health but also our skin’s health, and certain foods – or their lack – can impact our skin’s health. The most important aspect of beautiful skin is the kind of food you feed your body. ATELIER’s skincare expert tells you what to eat and what to avoid.
 
As the largest organ in the body, our skin benefi ts from the nutrients we get from certain skin-friendly foods. Studies also show that some foods and beverages can even worsen common skin conditions and cause allergic reactions on the skin. If supple skin that feels good and looks healthy, not to mention youthful, is on your most-desirable list, then here are some food and diet tips to follow after consultation with your dermatologist:
 
Befriend good fats
Some fat is healthy, even essential. Good fats and oils can provide anti-infl ammatory protection and youth-preserving antioxidants. Fatty fi sh provides hefty helpings of anti-ageing omega-3 fatty acids; salmon, mackerel and albacore tuna are among your best bets for staying beautiful. If you can’t eat these fi sh, opt for a good omega-3 supplement after consultation with your doctor. Another good anti-infl ammatory is extra virgin olive oil. It’ll make you look lovely, and could lower your bad cholesterol as well.
 
Stay away from infl ammation-inducing sugars and high-glycemic carbohydrates
This category of food includes items made with white fl our or white sugar, potatoes, rice and sugary beverages, et cetera. These foods can cause blood sugar to spike and lead to dangerous chemical changes in your body. They can fuel the creation of age-accelerating free radicals and break down collagen. Your body needs carbohydrates, though, so get your fi ll from complex carbohydrates like wholesome grains and low-glycemic fruits and vegetables.
 
Increase the intake of skinfriendly foods in your diet:
  • Water : While the exact amount of water one should drink each day varies, our skin needs at least about eight glasses of good, clean water every day. When hydration comes from pure, clean water, not liquids such as soda or tea, skin cells rejoice. In addition to keeping cells hydrated, water helps cells move nutrients in and toxins out, which leaves skin looking better.
  • Green tea : Another skin elixir is green tea, which reduces sun damage by quenching free radicals and reducing infl ammation caused by UV rays and the polyphenols in it, thus slowing signs of ageing. Drink two to three cups of green tea a day to shield your skin.
  • Berries : Bursting with fl avour and colour, raspberries, blueberries, strawberries, cranberries and blackberries are all packed with cancerfi ghting, disease-preventing antioxidants in high concentrations. These super-foods help replenish the skin’s natural antioxidant defences, while mopping up dangerous free radicals.
  • Carrots : These are a good source of beta-carotene that gets converted to vitamin A in the body. Vitamin A aids in the development of skin cells, maintenance of skin health, and protects skin from dryness. Eating carrots can act as a natural sunscreen, providing a SPF factor of 2 to 4.
  • Tomatoes : Every skin type benefi ts from this antioxidant powerhouse that boasts of vitamin C, K, A and lycopene. Lycopene, the pigment responsible for its red colour, is the most effi cient quencher of free radicals and raises the sun protection factor of the skin.
  • Dark greens : Be it broccoli, spinach or kale, the greener it is, the better it is for your skin. Rich in vitamins, these ensure faster skin renewal to keep you looking fresh and blemish-free.
  • Nuts : Brimming with vitamins A and E and healthy fats, nuts like walnuts and Brazil nuts protect your skin against pollutants while minimising sun damage.
  • Watermelon : Watermelon’s benefi cial effect comes from its component citrulline, which is converted to arginine in the body. Arginine helps fl ush out ammonia and other toxins from the body. The deepred watermelon variety also contains the pigment lycopene, which helps counter the bad effects of free radicals circulating in the body.
  • Kiwis : This tasty fruit contains twice the vitamin C of an orange, as well as fi bre, vitamin E and potassium. Pop a couple in your lunch box for a skin-boosting snack.
  • Dark chocolate : Dark chocolate, brimming with potent fl avonoid antioxidants, is now hailed as a super-food superstar. Emerging research suggest that dark chocolate not only protects the heart and blood vessels, but works on protecting the skin from sun damage.
  • Pomegranate : It contains potent antioxidants that decrease the negative effects of ultraviolet rays and reduce skin discolouration.
  • Avocado: Rich in vitamins A, B, C, E and potassium, avocados are easy to digest and contain monounsaturated oils that reduce cholesterol and give your skin a boost.
 
 
 
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Dr Varun Katyal
Cosmetic Dermatologist,
The Skin Centre, New Delhi
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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