Vanity, hubris, beauty, pride and youth. These are a handful of the reasons why we all strive for healthy skin.
Different products are intended for the eyes, nose, lips, and body. In the same respect, entirely unique products have been created for both men and women. Of course, it only stands to reason that looking after the skin should represent an important component of any daily health care regimen (after all, the skin is the largest organ of the body). The main question involves whether exterior products are sufficient. Might it be better to begin nourishing our bodies from the inside out? While I am happy that many of my readers are quite aware of the numerous external beauty treatments on the market, what about additional suggestions?
It should already be obvious that drinking plenty of water on a daily basis is crucial in terms of skin care. Anyone who has ever suffered from dehydration following a hangover is well aware of the effects that this brief situation can have upon the skin. Still, we are only beginning to scratch the surface (pun intended).
Consuming the Right Vitamins
Although many healthy substances are included within quality skin care products, it is also important to take these nutrients in the form of supplements. This is all about bioavailability and efficacy. After these substances are absorbed, they will be immediately sent to the appropriate locations (such as the dermis and epidermis). Not only will they ensure healthy and youthful skin, but they can help the cells themselves to regenerate faster. Now that we can appreciate the importance of specific substances in terms of maintaining healthy skin, let us examine some of the most potent.
Vitamin D is created when our bodies absorb sunlight and convert cholesterol into this vital nutrient. However, the process itself is hardly sufficient. While getting a bit of sunshine each day (approximately 10 minutes) is a good idea, be sure to eat plenty of foods rich in this nutrient. Examples include cod, salmon and tuna. Vitamin D supplements will likewise ensure healthy skin.
This vitamin is present in both the upper and lower layers of your skin. It can help to fight certain types of cancers (thanks to its antioxidant properties) and as it is involved with collagen production, it is pivotal in maintaining the elasticity of your skin. It therefore stands to reason that vitamin C is found within countless skincare products. However, oral doses can also help to protect your skin against harmful UV rays thanks to the inherent ability to prevent cellular damage and to heal localised wounds.
As we mentioned, the fact that this vitamin helps to synthesise collagen is important from an anti-ageing standpoint. It has even been shown to reduce the prominence of wrinkles and the appearance of dry skin. This is why deficiencies such as unhealthy skin and a lower immune system are easily noticeable. While the average recommended dose is 1,000 milligrams per day, I consume 3,000 milligrams. You can read more about why here. Here are some tips if you hope to obtain more vitamin C:
- Eat more citrus fruits such as oranges and drink fresh orange juice.
- Consume plant-based sources such as broccoli, spinach and strawberries.
- Take a natural vitamin C supplement.
The good news is that vitamin C supplements are quick, easy and effective ways to boost internal concentrations and to provide your skin with a healthy glow.
Similar to vitamin C, vitamin E is an antioxidant. Its primary role is to shield your body from excessive levels of sunlight. When applied to the skin, it is able to absorb harmful ultraviolet rays. While the body will normally produce vitamin E from within the pores of the skin (this is known as “sebum”), you might require more if your skin is noticeably dry. Not only can supplements counteract naturally low levels of vitamin E, but they will help to treat any local inflammations.
Although vitamin E is present within many skincare products, it can become denatured (neutralised) when exposed to the sun. This is why obtaining more vitamin E through a healthy diet is recommended. Here are some additional suggestions:
- Consume plenty of legumes such as almonds, sunflower seeds and hazelnuts.
- Take a multivitamin or a separate vitamin E supplement.
- Apply topical creams containing vitamin C and vitamin E.
Vitamin K plays an important role in the formation of blood clots. This is critical in terms of healing any wounds, bruises or areas of the skin that might have recently undergone surgery. So, it only stands to reason that vitamin K is thought to help address skin conditions including:
- Spider veins
- Dark patches
- Stretch marks
- Dark circles beneath the eyes
This vitamin is found within many topical creams and it can also be prescribed by doctors in order to speed up surgical recovery. Here are some foods laden with vitamin K:
- Spinach (my smoothie favourite)
- Green beans
As always, taking multivitamins can also help you to supplement your vitamin K intake.
Also known as retinol, vitamin A is one of the most powerful anti-ageing nutrients to keep in mind. It is likewise available within potent multivitamins.
Vitamin B3 is sometimes referred to as niacin or niacinamide. Either way, this is one of the most important vitamins in terms of obtaining healthy and youthful skin. Vitamin B3 is also a powerful agent if you hope to provide your skin with a bright and glowing allure thanks to its ability to balance skin tone. This nutrient can be found in anchovies (believe it or not), chicken breast and spirulina.
Above all, always keep in mind that the root segment of the word “vitamin” is “vita” (Latin for “life”). Vitamins support life, encourage overall health and should be incorporated within a balanced diet. This also includes other important recommendations such as obtaining a sufficient amount of rest and avoiding stress when possible.
While skin creams can provide benefits from the outside, true nourishment comes from within. Stay hydrated, stay happy, and stay healthy.