Winter may be over but that doesn’t mean you don’t have to deal with dry skin in warm weather. Dry heat, sun exposure, wind, dry air (air conditioning), frequent use of cleansers etc. can cause loss of moisture and dry skin in summers too. While it’s essential to use a light, non-greasy and emollient moisturizer in spring/summers it is also equally important to hydrate the skin from within.
We all know that we are what we eat, i.e. whatever good or bad food items we intake into our system manifest themselves in our outward appearance too. So fatty, greasy, sugary food will result into pimples, clogged pores etc. while wholesome, raw, unprocessed food and fresh juices will have a detoxifying and healthy effect on your skin. Even so, we are not always aware about what foods to eat for providing the right nutrition and hydration to our skin. So here we have the lowdown on 5 Super foods which will hydrate your skin from within and leave it radiant and naturally dewy.
AVOCADO- Also known as Mother nature’s moisturizer, avocado has around 74% water content by weight. It is also an excellent source of hydrocarbons and natural oils. A naturally fatty fruit (good fats) avocado is also rich in vitamins and the green pulp attached to the peel has highest density of these vitamins.
Include avocado in your diet whether in raw fruit form or as delectable guacamole. You can also use its pulp as a natural facial by itself or by combining with other skin softeners such as Papaya, cucumber, pineapple etc.
OMEGA 3 RICH FOODS- Omega 3 fatty acids are among the essential fatty acids that decrease skin inflammation. Salmon, sardines, flax seeds, walnuts and soybeans are excellent sources of Omega 3 fatty acids.
Omega 3 moisturizes dry and itchy skin and smoothens the texture of skin while making it soft and supple. Omega 3 fatty acids strengthen cell membrane which helps retain water and keeps the skin hydrated. Easiest way to include these into diet would be to add a sprinkling of ground flax seeds to your food, use flaxseed oil as a dressing for salads and substitute dairy products for Soy milk products.
DARK LEAFY GREEN VEGETABLES- Green leafy vegetables are a class apart when you talk of water content and nutrient density. They have important minerals such as Calcium, magnesium, potassium and also vitamins like vitamins A, K, B1 and B2. Leafy veggies also contain phytonutrients which protect our cell degeneration and thus reduce premature aging. If that was not enough, the high fibre content of leafy vegetables aids in smooth bowel movements which is essential for healthy skin.
Include leafy veggies like spinach, swiss chards, mustard greens, bokchoy green and varieties of Kale etc. in your daily diet. You can also drink a green smoothie made out of leafy veggies with sweet fruits like banana, mango and a dash of herbs like thyme, rosemary etc…tasty and full of goodness!
BERRIES- Berries like strawberry, blueberries, blackberries, goji berry and acai berry are all great sources of Vitamin C, Antioxidants, Beta carotene and iron. Eat them raw, toss them in your cereal, add to side dishes or use them in a face mask – they will definitely improve the health of your skin.
Goji berry and Acai berry are especially nutrient dense and packed with health benefits. Goji berry also known as “Longevity fruit” has anti-aging properties and fights against free radical damage. Acai berry improves blood circulation and thus slows down the drying and aging process of skin. You can make a Goji-Acai berry smoothie using goji juice, acai juice, mango for flavour, milk and frozen yoghurt.
WATER- Although technically not a food, it is definitely super beneficial for your skin. Scientists have claimed that intake of water does not really affect the hydration of skin but the fact is that water is essential to the health of our system as 70% of our body is water. Water is necessary to flush out toxins from your system, during summer your body and your skin loses water and it is essential to replenish this loss by drinking water and other liquids but no coffee, tea or carbonated drinks can replace water.
Even though most of the Superfoods listed above have high water content it might not always be possible to include them in your diet everyday. Drinking water is a zero calorie, low-cost way of keeping your body and skin hydrated. Mineral balanced alkaline water is the best health drink ever.
What are the must-haves in your diet to keep your skin fresh and hydrated? Would love to know your thoughts on your favorite superfoods in the comments!This post has been written by our staff writer Swapna