January is the month we hit the ground running and frantically get started on our goals for the New Year. It’s now, more than ever (whilst still recovering from the holidays), that our bodies need some good ol’ TLC. While you’re trying to find your feet and get into a good rhythm, take note of the foods you should incorporate in your diet to GLOW WHILE YOU GO! GO! GO!
So what are the foods that can help give your skin that radiant, youthful glow for your BEST YEAR YET?
You would’ve learned in the previous article “The Secret Language of Cravings – and how to crack the code!” that up to 80% of all inflammatory and immune signals come from your gut. So, if you can keep your gut healthy you’ll have less inflammation on your skin, which means less chance of pigmentation and inflammatory acne, and a better immune response to cystic acne and infections. This means your skin will heal faster, all you need to do is feed it with healthy, glow-worthy foods.
Foods that are good for your skin are good for all your cells. It’s so important to maintain your tissue elasticity as this allows movement in your skin and reduces wrinkling. For this, you need a good supply of collagen.
Genetically 1 in 3 of us break down more collagen than we produce which can lead to premature wrinkles. You can find collagen supplements, however it is important to ensure that you have all the nutrients available to produce collagen, to give your skin bounce, structure and durability.
Vitamin C is a great start. This amazing vitamin helps to stabilise the genetic blueprint of your collagen and increases the speed at which your body can produce it. Vitamin C is also a great anti-oxidant and acts as a free radical vacuum cleaner. By eliminating some free radicals you can reduce oxidative stress and inflammation in the skin.
Good sources are:
Eating a diet rich in vitamin C can help protect your skin and reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
Vitamin E is one of the rare anti-oxidants that can be dissolved in fat. This means that is can be easily absorbed by the cells. So, whether you apply it to the skin or eat it in your diet, you’ll be getting amazing benefits.
Good sources are:
- Sunflower seeds
Nutritional skincare doesn’t have to be difficult. One of the simplest things to do to help your skin is drink water. It’s hot out there in the South African sun, you need to drink enough water to keep you and your skin properly hydrated.
Water helps fill out your skin to provide a smooth appearance, and it helps your skin look plump.
Lutein and Zeaxanthin
Now these anti-oxidants do something quite extraordinary. They filter out blue light. We are exposed to blue light by the sun, but the exposure has drastically increased with the use of laptops, cell phones, and LED lights. Blue light not only affects your sleeping patterns, but it can cause free radical damage on your skin.
These nutrients behave as antioxidants and help keep free radical damage from blue-light exposure in check. These nutrients are not produced by your body, so it’s important to include them in your diet.
Lutein and zeaxanthin are plant pigments. Good sources are:
- Green, leafy vegetables such as:
Include these foods in your diet and it’ll result in clear eyes and healthy-looking skin.
Curcumin is another pigment that should play a role in your nutritional skincare. Curcumin is found in Turmeric, a bright yellow spice with a mild flavour that you can add to just about anything. Curcumin doesn’t just brighten up your plate though, it has been shown in research to reduce inflammation and thus help to reduce the appearance of puffiness and swelling. By blocking the biochemical steps that produce the look of red and irritated skin, curcumin helps your skin tone look smooth and even.
Remember… your body gets its building blocks that it will use for your skin and other organs, from your diet. As the old saying goes, you are what you eat. If you clean up your diet by avoiding processed foods and focus on fresh food produced by the earth, you will feed your body with the best ingredients, which will help you achieve the best results for your body.
Your diet can also impact the communication between your cells.
Cells work together by communicating through chemical and electrical signals. Cellular communication is the foundation for skin health, and the vitality of your overall health.
By promoting your cells’ natural ability to communicate you will help your body (and skin) look good and feel great.
Dr. Pheiffer is the leader in Africa for Medical Biohacking and is pioneering the fields of life extension, youth enhancement and mental and physical optimization in the southern hemisphere.
She has lectured both nationally and internationally for billion dollar per annum companies, as well as locally for the American Academy of Anti Aging Medicine, and has been a keynote speaker at AMCSA for 3 years. She cohosts a radio health and wellness slot and authors a newsletter to other physicians around the country on the subjects of advanced nutrition, biochemistry, nutrigenomics, as well as functional, integrative and anti-aging medicine, which she is considered a thought leader internationally for.