When wondering how to achieve healthy skin, the more pertinent question to ask may be how to quit added sugar. This is because our sweet tooth has a damaging effect on our skin – but it’s not the only thing to steer clear of. Here are 4 foods worth avoiding in your skin health journey.
It’s true what they say – you are what you eat. The foods we put on our plate can have a major impact on the health of our whole bodies, including our skin. There are certain foods that can wreak havoc and cause anything from acne to premature wrinkles. Let’s dive into the foods you’ll want to avoid in the name of skin care.
Let's start with the obvious one: sugar. We all know that excess sugar is bad news for our liver and waistline, but did you know that it's also damaging to your skin? When we consume sugar, it causes our insulin levels to spike, which can lead to inflammation and breakouts. Plus, sugar can damage the collagen and elastin in our skin, which can lead to premature aging. If you want to keep your skin looking healthy, it's best to steer clear of the sweet stuff. Sugar may be sweet, but its effects on your skin are anything but!
Not only are they often loaded with sugar, salt, and unhealthy fats, but ultra-processed foods can also wreak havoc on our skin. That's because they are typically low in nutrients and high in inflammatory ingredients like preservatives, hydrogenated oils and colours, which can lead to dullness, dryness, dehydrated skin and other issues. If you want healthy, glowing skin, it's best to stick to whole, nutrient-dense foods!
Last but not least, we have fried foods. We all know that fried chicken and chips aren't exactly health foods, but did you know that they can be just as bad for your skin as they are for your gut? When we consume fried foods, they can cause our oil glands to go into overdrive, which can lead to clogged pores and acne breakouts. Plus, fried foods are often high in unhealthy trans fats, which can lead to inflammation and other skin issues, particularly premature ageing.
What to eat instead
Whole, real food is the key to healthy skin. For instance, nuts are loaded with skin-boosting nutrients like healthy fats, zinc and protein. Walnuts in particular are an impressive source of omega 3 fatty acids, which are known to protect our skin. But when looking for foods with omegas in them, it’s important to take into account the ratio between omega 3s and omega 6s, as too much of the latter is believed to result in inflammation and potential skin issues. Walnuts happen to have a good ratio between the two, making them an ideal source of omega fatty acids.
Other foods with a decent ratio include fish, hemp seeds and chia seeds. But walnuts happen to provide an exceptional amount of other skin-healthy nutrients like zinc, vitamin E and selenium, all of which protect the skin barrier and fight inflammation. Zinc in particular is known to improve the skin’s barriers strength and defences, along with aiding the healing processes to prevent infection and inflammation. So, if you opt for nutrient dense veggies, fruit, nuts, seeds, fermented foods and legumes over ultra-processed, sugary food, you can’t go wrong!
Keen for more exciting skin health content? Check out our latest Unprocessed podcast episode, Healing Your Skin From the Inside Out, with our passionate guest speaker Asha Evertsz. This pioneering skin guru shares her experience dealing with acne and pigmentation issues and her journey to create a solution outside of the typical pharmacological recommendations. Check out the podcast to hear her discoveries.
Need a bit of help fighting off a stubborn sugar addiction? We're here to help. Join us for the 8-Week Program where we’ll be quitting sugar and turning our health dreams into a reality. When you sign up with us, you’ll have access to clear-cut meal plans, community support and exclusive access to our sugar-free content. Here’s what’s on offer:
- 8 weeks of meal plans and shopping lists.
- 90+ member-only recipes.
- Community forums to share your journey.
- Support and guidance from the I Quit Sugar team.
- Exclusive content from our panel of experts.
So, if you’re ready to ditch sugar and the host of maladies that come with it, it’s not too late to JOIN NOW!
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