Eating Raw: Food for the Skin

clear-skin picture from gwen

Everyone knows that eating vegetables is great for the body: For losing weight, for gaining weight, for improving energy levels, for all kinds of healing. It is widely known that the abundance of natural vitamins and minerals found in raw foods provides amazing health benefits. However, did you know that raw food has a positive effect on the skin?

These days the beauty trend often follows different dietary lifestyles, and so buzzwords like raw, vegan, and organic are showing up on beauty products, replacing the chemicals that once took over the skincare industry. However, instead of dishing out your money for the many brands and products out there, it’s possible to improve your skin just through eating right, having an impact on the skin from the inside out!

While having a balanced diet containing a variety of vitamins and minerals is of utmost importance, here are some nutrients that specifically focus on nourishing our skin:

⁃ Vitamin A: found in red, orange, and green veggies like peppers, carrots, and leafy greens; this antioxidant aids in the anti-aging of skin cells and cell repair.

⁃ Vitamin B (and iron): found in foods like walnuts and pistachios; this vitamin helps the circulation of blood which carries all the life-giving nutrients to our cells, giving the skin a healthy glow.

⁃ Bromelain: found in pineapple; bromelain is an anti-inflammatory agent and aids in quick healing and recovery of the skin and the body in general.

⁃ Vitamin C: found in various veggies and citrus fruits; this common vitamin helps with building collagen which gives our skin softness, strength and elasticity as well as helping to replace dead skin cells.

⁃ Copper: found in apples and almond milk; this mineral helps the body produce melanin, which acts as the body’s natural SPF against UV damage. Toxic sunscreens are not recommended as they can be the cause of skin cancer.

⁃ Vitamin E: found in nuts; this is an antioxidant that fights free radicals and oxidation, which prematurely ages the skin.

⁃ Omega 3s: found in healthy fats like chia seeds and walnuts, and are also found in fruits and vegetables, especially leafy greens. Omega 3s are a natural moisturizer that keep skin hydrated and soft.

⁃ Zinc: found in seeds and nuts, especially high in pumpkin seeds; this nutrient helps rebuild collagen which again gives a resilient strength to our skin.

In addition to eating whole, fresh fruits and veggies, and a small amount of seeds and nuts, another great way to add these nutrients into your diet is through juices and smoothies.
Green_Smoothie from Gwen_(3652108873)

By juicing your foods, the fiber is removed allowing for quick absorption of the highly concentrated vitamins and minerals into the blood stream. However, it is also important to note that while there are a variety of prepared bottled juices on the market, many of these juices contain added sugar which leads to increased levels of insulin. Excess insulin then increases inflammation in the body which breaks down the collagen and elastin in the skin. Of course this won’t work when we are trying to repair the skin, therefore it makes so much more sense to eat the healthy fruits and vegetables without anything added, for these are the real skin foods.

Smoothies are also an excellent choice for maintaining your skin. While juicing removes the fiber, creating a liquid health benefit for healing and quick digestion, fiber is the most important benefit of a vegan and raw lifestyle. By eating smoothies, their fiber will clean out your digestive system and helps control the blood sugar levels.
green-smoothie-drink from gwen
In summary, eating raw living foods full of antioxidants and healthy fats will give you soft, supple, glowing skin.

Happy eating!

Sources:
http://www.thisrawsomeveganlife.com/2013/06/foods-that-feed-skin-hair-and-nails-and.html
http://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-21117/5-reasons-to-eat-raw-foods-for-that-elusive-golden-glow.html
http://www.bodyandsoul.com.au/nutrition/nutrition-tips/raw-foods-make-you-beautiful/news-story/99f784d84740df874e91de4e282b4cbf
http://www.prevention.com/food/raw-foods-improve-skin-health

Written by Gwendolyn Lee, Ramapo College Intern with Karen Ranzi, M.A.

One Response so far.

  1. gen agustsson says:
    what do you mean for loosing and gaining weight?

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