Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Food For The Skin

Ever wonder why, even though you use natural or organic skincare that is either homemade or bought, your still have skin issues?  Consider the foods you consume on a daily basis.  Your skin grows from the inside out.  As new skin cells develop, old cells die and flake off.  So it only stand to reason what you consume will affect your skin.  As the nutrients from the foods you eat pushes through your skin so do all the toxins they carry.
I am not here to preach.  I am the first to raise my hand that I use a busy life, stress, convenience of prepared food to get though the day from time to time.  However I know not to fool myself when I do not take time to eat right.  I know why I don’t feel good or why I am having trouble with my skin.  I know I put nothing bad on my skin.  So I know when I break down and have a soda, I am going to get a “zit” somewhere on my face.  Never fails. 

One day I said no more Coca Cola.  I have given it up before but not for the reason I was going to give it up this time.  I wanted to be healthy.  I wanted to understand food and how we got so far away from home cooked healthy meals. It was hard because I like my Coca Cola.  I am sure at one point it was what flowed through my veins.  Again, I will say I am not perfect.  About once a month I have one and once a month I get my zit!

To make the change in my life fun I decided with my sister to start a cooking/food business, 2 Prickly Pears.   This time I had someone to learn things with and have a good time doing it.  Here are things I had to consider when I changed my eating habits and how it affected my skin. 

Make sure your diet contains antioxidant foods to help fight free radical damage.  Vitamin C, vitamin E, selenium, beta carotene, zinc and omega 3 are known to help nourish and protect the skin.

Vitamin C which is naturally found in the skin helps the skin fight off free radical damage.  Remember sun destroys vitamin C so it is important to replace what the sun takes if you are someone who is in the sun a lot. 
  • Items for the grocery list: citrus fruit; oranges, grapefruit, clemanintes, lemons, tangerines either in fruit or juice form.  Beets, bell peppers, blackberries, broccoli, Brussels sprout,  cantaloupe, carrots, cauliflower, cabbage, cucumbers, fennel, green beans, kale, kidney beans, kiwi, kohlrabi, mangoes, mustard greens, okra,  papaya,  parsley, pineapple, plums,  raspberries, rutabagas, strawberries, snow peas, sugar snap peas, summer squash, tomatoes, turnip greens, watermelon, white potato, winter squash.

Vitamin E helps protect cell membranes and guard against UV radiation damage and aids in the skins aging processes. 
  • Items for the grocery list: asparagus, almonds, almond butter, avocadoes, beet greens, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, canola oil, cranberries, collard greens, dandelion greens, flaxseed oil, hazelnuts, mangoes, olive oil, peanuts, peanut butter, pine nuts,  red bell peppers, raspberries, spinach, Swiss chard, sunflower seeds, spinach, sunflower butter, tomatoes, turnip greens.

Selenium which helps in the elasticity in the skin and aid in sun damage to the skin. 
  • Items for the grocery list:  asparagus, barley, beef- grass-fed ,broccoli, brown rice, chicken, crab, cod, eggs, mushrooms, garlic, mustard seeds, oysters, tilapia, tuna, scallops, shrimp, spinach, turkey, venison.

Beta carotene is converted to vitamin A in the body which helps grow and repair of body tissues, including your skin.
  • Items for the grocery list: Apricots, asparagus, butter head lettuce, butternut squash, cabbage, cantaloupe, carrots, cherries, collard greens, kale, mangoes, mustard greens, pink and red grapefruit, pumpkin, red bell pepper, romaine lettuce, spinach, sweet potatoes, turnip greens, Swiss chard, tomatoes, watermelon.

Zinc helps maintain the collagen that keeps your skin firm and aids in the skins renewal.  6 percent of the zinc in your body is found in your skin.  Keeping an ample supply of foods high in zinc is very important.  
  • Items for the grocery list: asparagus, Beans; black beans, navy beans, pinto beans, garbanzo beans, kidney beans, lima beans.  beef, black-eyed peas, cashews, clams, crab, lamb, green peas, lentils, lobster, oysters, miso, mussels, peanuts, peanut butter, pecans, pine nuts, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, venison, yogurt.

Omega 3 is so good for you inside and out!  A proper balance of Omega 3’s will help with the integrity of the cell walls which in return will help the cells retain moisture and prevent skin inflammation which is the leading skin disorders. 
  • Items for the grocery list: anchovies, chia seeds, collard greens, flaxseed, flaxseed oil, green beans, herring, kale, mackerel, miso, rainbow trout, salmon, sardines, seaweed, spinach, tuna, walnuts.

And… WATER!  

There is no way around it; try as you may you cannot replace the importance of water in your diet.   We need to make sure we get enough water in our daily diet.  Keeping yourself properly hydrated is so important.  Water help flush out toxins within the body.  Helps move nutrients through the body easily and smoothly.  

The amount of water in the human body ranges from 50-75%. The average adult human body is 50-65% water.  As our body expels fluid, which is what it needs to do, we need to replace it. The Institute of Medicine recommends 9 cups of fluid for women and 13 for men.  Some will say you can count the fluid in some foods as water or if you are a tea drinker you can count that.  I never do.  Water is water and that is what I count.  If I get in more then 9 cups of fluid in me, then that means I will go to the bathroom more.  

As you can see the list of foods do not contain fast food, junk food, greasy food or my beloved Coca Cola.  We all know the reason why.

It can be a hard change to make but removing the foods that damage your body is well worth it!

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