Good Food Good Skin

Good Food, Good Skin
Perhaps the simplest way to maintain a healthy, balanced diet and ensure the skin is getting optimal nutrition from the foods we eat is to follow the recommendations of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Daily Food Guide, commonly referred to as the food pyramid. These include:
•Choosing and eating at least three ounces of whole grain breads, cereals, rice, crackers or pasta.
•Eating a wide variety of fruits and vegetables, including more dark green and orange vegetables.
•Consuming calcium-rich foods, such as fat-free or low-fat milk and other dairy products.
•Opting for a variety of low-fat or lean meats, poultry and fish.

“The foods recommended by the USDA as part of a healthy diet contain valuable vitamins and minerals that have proven health benefits for our bodies,” said Dr. Taylor. “Research has shown that the antioxidants in vitamins C and E can protect the skin from sun damage and help reduce damage in skin cells caused by harmful free radicals, which contribute to aging skin. Similarly, we have long known that the B vitamin biotin is responsible for forming the basis of skin, hair and nail cells, and vitamin A – found in many fruits and vegetables – maintains and repairs skin tissue. Without an adequate supply of these vitamins, you may notice it in the appearance of your skin, hair and nails.”

While the direct link between food consumption and skin damage has not been widely studied, one study comparing the correlation between food and nutrient intake with skin wrinkling found a positive relationship. The study, “Skin Wrinkling: Can Food Make a Difference?”, published in the February 2001 issue of the Journal of the American College of Nutrition, determined that Swedish subjects aged 70 and older had the least skin wrinkling in a sun-exposed site among the four ethnic groups studied. This cross-sectional study, which analyzed the pooled data using the major food groups, suggests “that subjects with a higher intake of vegetables, olive oil, and monounsaturated fat and legumes, but a lower intake of milk/dairy products, butter, margarine and sugar products had less skin wrinkling in a sun-exposed site.”

“More studies need to be done to determine the long-term benefits of food on our skin,” said Dr. Taylor. “Eating a variety of healthy foods and drinking plenty of water so the skin stays hydrated should help most people improve the appearance of their skin.”

Foods That Can Worsen Skin Conditions
For the millions of Americans affected by medical skin conditions such as acne, rosacea, eczema or psoriasis, eating certain foods or consuming alcohol could aggravate their symptoms or trigger an unexpected flare-up. Dr. Taylor recommended that patients affected by these chronic skin conditions should be aware of certain food interactions in order to better manage their treatment regimen.

Contrary to popular belief, acne is not caused by the foods we eat. Although numerous studies have not found a link between diet and acne, emerging research now suggests there may be a link between a low-glycemic diet and an improvement in acne. The study, “Low-Glycemic-Load Diet May Improve Acne in Young Men,” published in the July 2007 issue of the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition examined whether male acne patients aged 15 to 25 who followed a low-glycemic diet (25 percent of energy from protein and 45 percent from low-glycemic-index carbohydrates) had a reduction in acne lesions vs. a control group that consumed a diet rich in carbohydrates.
Good Food Good Skin Good Food Good Skin Reviewed by traveller on 11:32:00 PM Rating: 5

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