Skin Care Foods: What Foods Help Maintain Healthy Skin?

You've heard the conventional wisdom that the foods you put into your body will eventually show up in your skin. That means that if your diet is high in fat and processed food and contains few fruits and vegetables, your skin is likely to reflect that.

In our teens and 20s, we are able to get away with a lot, but once we hit 30 (and beyond) our skin may not be so forgiving.

Here are a few foods that help maintain healthy skin:

Water
Water is listed first because it is essential to glowing, healthy skin. We need at least 8 glasses of clear water a day, which does not include soda, coffee, soups, or other beverages. Unflavored clear water will provide the maximum health benefits as it helps purify youry body and eliminate toxins. Click here to read more about the health benefits of drinking water.

Green tea
This drink is loaded with health benefits, and it can help the look of your skin by reducing inflammation and fighting free radicals that cause skin damage. Enjoy green tea hot or iced.

Selenium
This powerhouse nutrient is found in such foods as tuna, turkey, brazil nuts, and whole grain breads. Strive to include at least one of these foods in your daily diet.

Fatty Acids
These are found in oils such as walnut and flaxseed. Oily fish such as salmon, tuna and mackerel are also rich in essential fatty acids.

Dairy
Low fat dairy products are high in Vitamin A, which is beneficial to the skin. Low fat yogurt is also good for the digestive system, which, in turn, helps maintain skin health.

Fruits and Vegetables
A variety of fruits and vegetables are good for overall healthy skin but there are some foods in particular that promote good skin health because they are high in powerful antioxidants. Berries, such as strawberries, blueberries blackberries are great for fighting against free radicals that can cause skin cell damage. Vegetables that are brightly colored - such as red peppers, yellow peppers and sweet potatoes - are also great skin care foods.

Foods to Avoid

Now that you know what to eat there are some things that should be left out altogether if you want to look young longer:

White Flour Foods
White bread, white rice, and white pasta are less nutritious than their whole grain counterparts and may cause inflammation in the skin that can make you look older. Try cutting these items from your diet for two weeks see if your skin looks less inflamed and if fine lines become less apparent.

Processed Foods
Processed foods are loaded with sugar and additives. Sodas and other sugary drinks are not only bad for your health but can also rob your skin of essential nutrients.

Alcohol
Alcohol dehydrates the skin and speeds the aging process, so drink alcohol only in moderation. A little red wine may have some health benefits – whereas beer does not.

Smoking
Smoking will age your skin. Your skin and lungs will thank you for cutting back or quitting altogether.

For truly glowing, young skin, a balanced diet rich in whole grains, fruits, vegetables and fatty acids is best.