What are the best foods for healthy skin? Here are the top 10, plus recipe ideas for each one.
I’ve always had this vague idea that I could eat my way to healthier skin, but I’d never really dug into the details. It makes sense though, right? Pack your diet with nourishing, vitamin-rich foods, and your whole body benefits, including your body’s largest organ.
Rather than keep piling the kale onto my plate and hoping for the best, I thought it was time to research the best foods for healthy skin.
10 Best Foods for Healthy Skin
1. Sweet Potatoes
Sweet potatoes are rich in beta carotene, an antioxidant that helps your body repair damaged skin cells. I’m sure you’ve had your sweet potatoes boiled or roasted, but there are other yummy ways to get this skin-smart orange veggie into your diet.
Blueberries – and other dark berries – contain high concentrations of antioxidants. Beta carotene (see above) is just one antioxidant that helps protect your skin. On top of the antioxidants, blueberries can help with red, blotchy skin.
How to eat them: Right out of the container! You can also add them to muffins or biscuits. Just beware of blueberry-flavored foods that don’t actually contain any blueberries.
3. Peanuts and Almonds
Peanuts and almonds are both very high in biotin, a nutrient that your body needs to create skin, hair, and nail cells. Biotin is a B vitamin, and a deficiency in this important nutrient can cause skin irritation and rashes.
How to eat them: Peanut or almond butter is obvious, but try using peanut or almond butter to make a delicious, creamy sauce or branching out with a super yummy peanut stew.
4. Flax and Chia Seeds
Studies going as far back as the late 1920s have shown that omega 3 fatty acids help promote healthy skin. These healthy fats help strengthen cell membranes, which protect your skin from harmful toxins. Flax and chia seeds are both great sources of healthy omega 3s.
This tropical fruit is an excellent source of vitamin C, an antioxidant that helps your body repair damaged skin cells. Papaya also has anti-inflammatory compounds that help improve your skin’s appearance.
Avocados contain those healthy omega 3 fatty acids, and they’re also a great source of vitamin E. Vitamin E helps protect your skin from fine lines and wrinkles. A vitamin E-rich diet also helps you bounce back from sunburn.
7. Green Tea
Put the kettle on, because green tea is full of skin-rejuvenating polyphenols that can improve your skin’s health and even help protect your body from skin cancer.
I know, it almost felt like a cop-out including water on this list. But the benefits of hydration are too many to discount. If you don’t like drinking plain old water, don’t worry! Below are some options to spice things up.
9. Collard Greens
I wasn’t far off with my plateful of kale plan, but collard greens beat kale in antioxidant counts and anti-inflammatory benefits. You can use collards in place of kale in lots of recipes!
10. Brazil Nuts