Could what you eat affect your skin? YES! The food you eat can keep your body in good health, but a poor diet may affect not only your waistline, but also your skin.
Processed foods (packaged cookies, chips, candy, frozen dinners) These foods can cause blood sugar spikes. When blood sugar rises, your skin will produce more oil (sebum). This oil lingers causing bacteria to breed, which leads to acne. Eating these foods every now and then won’t hurt, just do not make them staples in your everyday diet.
Refined carbohydrates (breads, pastas, pastries) These foods can fill us up quickly, but offer little nutritional support. A spike in blood sugar can affect not only oil production, but hormone levels leading to possible breakouts. Too much sugar also breaks down collagen and elastin. Try increasing your activity or exercising to help boost your energy. This is more effective than loading up on empty calories. Exercise will also help detoxify your pores at the same time.
Excess salt (chips, french fries, popcorn, salted nuts) Any high sodium food can cause the skin to weaken and age faster. Sodium makes you retain water which causes bloating and puffiness of the body, including the face. Try using herbs and spices to season your food instead of salt. It is an easy, cost-effective change and often more flavorful.
Caffeine (coffee, soda products) Caffeine thins and dehydrates skin making you look older and dull. One cup of coffee is not harmful, just avoid relying on coffees and sodas as your only liquid intake. DRINK WATER! Its one of the best things you can do for your skin.
Fast food ( burgers, pizza, fries, tacos) Most fast food items are fried in refined and processed oils giving them an elevated, unhealthy fat content. This is hard for the body to break down and cleanse out of the system, which in turn may possibly lead to other health and skin problems.
Dairy (milk, ice cream, yogurt) Most cows supplying your milk are given hormones to increase their supply. These hormones make the way into your body and cause skin problem as well as other digestive issues.
Consequences will always arise if you do not prioritize a healthy lifestyle. With anything in excess, side effects occur, as well as, weight gain, high cholesterol, and irritated skin. If you focus on limiting your intake of possible dietary triggers, you may notice an improvement in your body and your skin. If you feel there is a link between the foods you eat and how your skin looks/the way you feel, consider food sensitivity testing. It’s an easy way to know for certain.
When possible you can substitute sugar with honey. It’s a natural humectant (used to reduce the loss of moisture) and loaded with antioxidants.
At home body exfoliant:
- Pour about 1/4 cup of warm honey into a small bowl.
- Stir in about a 1/2 cup of old-fashioned oats.
- Mix well.
- Exfoliate skin in circular motions and rise in the shower.
To Healthy Skin,
Leslie A. Gilstrap, Licensed Esthetician