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Is your skincare range failing to restore your skin’s lost glow? Experts believe that including the right foods in your diet can give you healthy, glowing skin in no time.

Clear skin is every woman’s dream and most invest a lot of time and money in planning their skin care routine. However, external care is not enough if you want to resolve your skin issues holistically. Giving your skin the right nutrition also plays a major role in ensuring that your skin stays healthy.

Read on to know the best foods to include while chalking your diet plan for beautiful, glowing skin.

Our Ayurvedic Doctor Says

“One of the various manifestations of good health is Prabha - good skin radiance. Healthy glowing skin is an indicator of good metabolism, a content mind and a blissful soul.”

Dr. Zeel Gandhi (Bachelor Of Ayurveda, Medicine & Surgery), Chief Ayurvedic Doctor, Vedix

Which Diet Is Best For Glowing Skin?

A. Foods For Glowing Skin

1. Avocados

This nutrient-rich fruit is a great source of essential antioxidants like vitamin C and E which strengthen your skin immunity and help fight free radical skin damage that causes skin aging.

Skin healing vitamins such as vitamin B2, B3, B5, B6 and vitamin K and minerals such as potassium, magnesium, phosphorus, and calcium in avocado initiate collagen production, fight inflammation, accelerate wound healing and remove skin pigmentation.

Further, the good fats in avocado keep your skin moisturized and prevent skin conditions like eczema, xerosis, psoriasis, acne and sun damage.

2. Fatty Fish

One can go on about the skin benefits of fatty fish. These include fishes like salmon, tuna, mackerel, anchovies and others. Rich in omega-3 fatty acids which help reduce skin inflammation and boost skin radiance, fatty fish is a must for glowing skin.

It also contains vitamin B12 and vitamin D that prevent collagen depletion, stimulate cell production, prevent hyperpigmentation and combat dry skin and premature skin aging.

3. Seaweed

woman eating dry seaweed

An essential part of Japanese and even Korean cuisine, seaweed greatly contributes to skin health. It is packed with amino acids, [1] which help retain moisture in the stratum corneum, repair wounds and prevent UV ray damage.

Various forms of vitamin B present in seaweed prevent skin conditions such as acne, allergies, skin peeling, lines and wrinkles.

It also provides your skin with important proteins and minerals such as iron, magnesium, zinc and iodine (an important trace mineral that the human body cannot produce). These aid cell regeneration, prevent skin inflammation and ensure skin rejuvenation. Further, including seaweed in your regular diet can prevent various skin infections.

Nori, a seaweed used to wrap sushi or gimbap, contains a whopping amount of Beta-carotene (4500 ppm), vitamin C (1110 ppm), vitamin B12 (10,000- 20,000 ppb), vitamin E (3300 ppm), magnesium (2000- 5000 ppm) and many other proteins and minerals in lesser quantities. Each of these nutrients protect, rejuvenate and enhance your skin in different ways.

4. Sweet Potatoes

Often considered a superfood, sweet potatoes contain various vital vitamins and minerals in abundance. They are rich in vitamins A, B3, B5, B6 and C and minerals like manganese, potassium and copper.

Consuming them as a healthy snack or making them a part of your meals can help prevent chronic inflammatory skin conditions like eczema, fight cancer-triggering factors in the body, improve skin elasticity and bring about a natural glow on dull skin.

5. Spinach

This green leafy vegetable is a powerhouse of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants [2]. Spinach contains carotene and vitamin B and K which give your skin structural support and prevent conditions like skin inflammation and dryness.

Vitamin C along with other antioxidants like quercetin and lutein in spinach help scavenge free radicals, prevent chronic skin diseases, reverse sun damage and improve skin complexion.

It also contains minerals like iron, zinc, manganese and magnesium. These micronutrients strengthen the epidermal barrier and help your skin fight bacterial infections and acne. They also play a role in preventing photodamage and aid the production of various metalloenzymes that regulate skin functions.

6. Carrot

Carrot is one of the best sources of beta-carotene, a precursor of vitamin A, which stimulates cell renewal, regulates oil balance, prevents acne conditions and protects your skin cells from UV ray damage.

Carrot also has flavonoids [3], minerals and polyacetylenes which possess antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, wound healing and immune-enhancing abilities. Thus, eating carrots can improve your skin tone, prevent infections and delay skin aging.

7. Kiwi

The kiwi [4] fruit has a high content of vitamin C and other antioxidants which help your skin recover from injuries and fight sun damage. It also contains vitamin E, potassium and folate in small quantities. All these three micronutrients strengthen the skin barrier and help your skin stay hydrated. They also help keep skin-inflammatory conditions like eczema and psoriasis at bay.

Consumption of kiwi is known to improve digestion and gut health due to the presence of the enzyme Actinidin. Improved digestion results in good skin health as your body is able to derive maximum nutritional benefits from your food.

8. Sunflower Seeds

Organic sunflower seeds and flowers

Nuts and seeds are always considered a healthy inclusion in your diet for glowing skin. Sunflower seeds [5] among others have a relatively high content of vitamin E, that keeps your skin hydrated and delays skin aging.

Also the presence of selenium, zinc, folate and copper in these seeds prevents skin inflammatory conditions and reduces skin damage from free radicals. Sunflower seeds are known for their antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, anti-microbial and wound-healing properties owing to the flavonoids, essential fatty acids and polyphenols in them.

9. Walnuts

These nutrition-dense nuts can give your skin a boost of health. With a high vitamin E content, 100gms of walnuts [6] can fulfil almost 140 percent of your daily requirement.

Vitamin E ensures proper cell functions and protects them from the harmful effects of free radicals. Other vitamins such as vitamin A, C and K in walnuts also display antioxidant properties and keep your skin tight, soft and supple.

It also contains other vitamins such as riboflavin, pantothenic acid, niacin, pyridoxine and folate. All of these B complex vitamins aid in cell renewal and help prevent skin inflammation and chances of skin cancer.

10. Soybeans

Soy is known to be the ultimate vegan protein source that helps aging skin maintain its elasticity, firmness and glow.

It is also a rich source of calcium, zinc, magnesium, iron, phosphorus, copper, thiamine, riboflavin, niacin and other micronutrients that prevent skin inflammation, speed-up wound healing, increase the production of healthy red blood cells and fight skin infections.

Further, soybeans [7] contain various essential polyphenolic antioxidants such as isoflavones (in the form of glucosides) [8], ferulic acid and others that prevent free radical skin damage, provide UV ray protection and prevent premature skin aging. Thus, including soy products such as tofu, soy milk and soybeans in your daily diet can keep your skin firm and radiant.

11. Berries

Rich in antioxidants and vitamins, berries such as strawberries, raspberries, cranberries and blueberries can give you gorgeous, glowing skin. They not only prevent free radical damage but also reduce inflammation, increase collagen production and reduce the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines on your face.

Berries can also help reduce excess oil on the face and keep oily skin problems like acne at bay. Further, including them in your daily diet can help detoxify your body and flush out harmful toxins that affect skin health.

Most of these popular berries contain minerals such as copper and manganese which help maintain your natural skin tone and prevent skin hyperpigmentation.

12. Blackcurrants

This magical fruit has a plethora of health and skin benefits. With the ability to control diabetes and reduce excess blood pressure, blackcurrants [9] can save your skin from the harmful effects of diabetes and hypertension.

It is a rich source of vitamin C (even more than most citrus fruits) and helps in collagen synthesis which is necessary for young, glowing skin.

Minerals such as phosphorus, magnesium, potassium and others found in blackcurrants promote the growth of new skin cells and eliminate scars and marks on your skin.

13. Moringa

Moringa powder

Moringa (leaves of the drumstick tree) is extensively used in Ayurveda to promote skin health and enhance skin complexion. Moringa is known for its antibacterial, anti-viral, anti-fungal, anti-inflammatory, immune-strengthening, antioxidant and detoxifying properties.

Thus, regular consumption of moringa can prevent acne, skin infections, chronic skin inflammatory conditions, hyperpigmentation and premature skin aging.

It has immense quantities of vitamin C, potassium (about 10 times more than citrus fruits and bananas) and essential amino acids that prevent skin layer depletion.

14. Pumpkin

Pumpkin is rich in the antioxidant called beta-carotene which also gives it its bright orange colour. It also contains a fair amount of vitamin C and E all of which are essential antioxidants your skin requires to fight premature aging and cell damage caused by free radicals.

Vitamin A also aids cell renewal and collagen production, vitamin E enhances your skin’s moisture retention abilities and vitamin C treats pigmentation and helps your skin stay blemish-free.

15. Grapes/ Raisin

Grapes serve as a superfood for the skin. With a high water content, grapes keep your skin hydrated. They are rich in vitamin C and antioxidants like resveratrol, catechins, quercetin and others that improve your skin complexion, prevent skin infections, inflammation and UV damage.

16. Tea

Good news for all tea lovers, this beverage can actually make your skin glow. Tea, both black and green contains powerful polyphenolic antioxidants like catechins, tannins, flavonoids and theaflavins that can delay skin ageing by fighting oxidative stress caused by free radicals in your body. It also has an anti-inflammatory and detoxifying effect on the body that can help with acne conditions and oily skin.

B. Spices For Glowing Skin

1. Coriander

Being rich in vitamin C, vitamin K, manganese, iron, thiamin, niacin and many other micronutrients, coriander displays amazing antioxidant, antibacterial and detoxifying properties.

Garnishing your food or consuming this herb as a juice or a dip regularly can reduce acne, improve skin complexion, delay skin aging and protect your skin against sun damage.

2. Saffron

Often classified as a ‘varnya’ herb both consumption and topical application of saffron can give your beautiful, glowing skin. It is rich in vitamin A, vitamin C, niacin and carotenoids, all of which contribute to saffron’s antioxidant, anti-depressant, memory enhancing, anti-aging and anti-pigmentation properties.

3. Licorice

According to research, the main component in licorice, glycyrrhizin, displays powerful antioxidant, anti-viral, anti-cancer and anti-inflammatory properties. Thus, consumption of licorice can keep your skin free from infections, skin conditions like eczema, reduce hyperpigmentation and naturally improve your skin tone.

4. Manjistha

Manjistha is a great blood purifier that detoxifies your body and removes harmful toxins from your skin. It delays skin aging, rejuvenates and brings a natural glow to your skin upon daily consumption.

5. Fennel

Fennel is an age-old Ayurvedic herb known for its pitta pacifying and digestion boosting abilities. Adding fennel to your dishes, or even using it as mouth freshener after your meals can help fight various skin and health issues.

It contains a good amount of vitamins A and C, folate, potassium, magnesium, zinc, copper, phosphorus and many more nutrients that aid collagen production, fight skin pigmentation, prevent acne and bring a natural glow to your skin.

Vedix Tip: Try and include multi-coloured vegetables in your diet. Each natural colouring agent such as curcumin, carotenoids, carthamin, chlorophyll and anthocyanins [10] is known for its amazing antioxidant properties that can benefit your skin.

Diet Chart For Glowing And Fair Skin

While planning your meals, include the following to achieve glowing skin in a month.

Meal Timings

9.00 A.M

11.00 A.M

1.00 P.M

4.00 P.M

8.30 P.M

Food Options

Eggs/ muesli/ oatmeal/ boiled vegetables/ soy milk/ green tea

Fruits/ fruit juice/ tender coconut water/ aloe vera juice/ nuts and seeds/ boiled chickpeas, sprouts/ spinach juice

Salmon/ tuna/ mackerel/ curry cooked with coconut or coconut milk/ green leafy vegetables/ fresh vegetable salads/ moringa/ yogurt/ mushroom/ brown rice/ sushi

Apricots/ watermelon/ berries/ banana/ avocados/ kiwi/ blackcurrants/ green or black tea/

Tofu/ mixed vegetable/ soybeans/ seaweed salad/ sweet potato

Should We Have All These Foods Every Day For Glowing Skin?

Daily inclusion of the above-mentioned foods can quickly help clear out your skin issues and give you beautiful glowing skin. However, including all may not be very convenient. So plan out your diet and try having them at least 2 to 3 times a week in optimum quantities.

It is also important to know the nutritional content of vegetables/ fruits/seeds in order to eat them as per your daily requirement. If you are already on supplements for a certain vitamin, avoid overeating a similar food source.

This may cause imbalance and affect your skin adversely. Ayurveda believes in eating according to one’s Prakriti (body constitution) and level of doshas. Consuming foods that help balance your doshas can automatically improve your skin health.

What Are Some Foods That Are Bad For The Skin?

woman saying no to cheeseburger

1. Red Meat

Red meats that have a high content of saturated fat are known to cause insulin resistance in your body. This can have various cutaneous manifestations such as hyperpigmentation, wrinkles and worsening of pre-existing acne conditions.

Further, certain red meats contain leucine (amino acid) which can trigger your sebaceous glands into producing more sebum, leading to oily skin and acne.

2. Sugary Foods

Excess intake of sugary foods which have a high glycemic index can increase your blood sugar. This automatically stimulates your body into producing more insulin. This can trigger your androgen hormones which accelerate sebum production and cell growth leading to clogged pores and acne.

3. Processed Or Refined Foods

Refined and processed foods lose their nutritional value. These foods often contain excess sugar which can lead to acne, skin inflammation and collagen depletion.

4. Whey Protein Supplements

According to a research conducted on male bodybuilders, whey protein which is isolated from milk, contains various amino acids which may trigger acne conditions.

The Last Word

Glowing skin reflects inner health. While your skin care products take care of your skin concerns on the surface level, your diet ensures your skin gets the right nutrition. A healthy mix of antioxidants, vitamins, proteins, minerals and other micronutrients helps keep your skin young, healthy and functional. Skin that is cared for internally and externally, is one that exudes a natural glow.

Know Your Dosha Now

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