Beauty trends today are focusing on natural products, naturally derived and sustainably harvested, that are also good for your skin. More and more people are moving away from those harsh, man-made chemicals that can cause long-term damage or illnesses that are incurable. This trend has lasted long enough and has become large enough that it is quickly turning into a lifestyle for many and for future generations, which is wonderful for our planet and the natural world around us.
A big focus of these natural products includes naturally occurring ingredients that are often found in the foods we eat. We can easily give our bodies and our skin an easy one-two punch of health by looking for products that include these beneficial ingredients and incorporating them into our daily routines. Here are some common ingredients that are found in food that are also good for your skin care regimen.
Carotene and Beta-Carotene
This is an ingredient commonly found in many vibrantly colored foods, like bell peppers, mango, papaya, carrots, and sweet potatoes, among many others. Carotene and beta-carotene are antioxidants, and have the possibility of protecting the skin from damage that can be caused by too much sun exposure, or the free radicals that are in our everyday environments. Products that include these ingredients are usually those designed for more mature skin with anti-aging properties.
Isoflavones have been found to be particularly helpful for women going through menopause, though at any point more isoflavones can be beneficial to skin to reduce and prevent signs of aging such as fine lines and wrinkles. Isoflavones are mainly found in soy and soybeans (edamame, anyone?) but can also be found in legume seeds such as lentils, peas, and beans. Products that include these ingredients can include wrinkle balms and serums, anti-aging moisturizers, and a wide variety of other products marketed for anti-aging.
Omega-3 Fatty Acids
While many of us have been taught to stay away from fatty foods, some fatty foods such as fish and avocados are actually very beneficial to our health in the right doses. The omega-3 fatty acids found in some fatty foods can help prevent damage from UV radiation, as well as reducing inflammation and so reducing the amount of redness and inflammation in our skin. As well as some fish and avocados, omega-3 fatty acids can be found in walnuts, chia seeds, flax seeds, and soybeans. Products that contain omega-3 fatty acids are usually marketed with anti-inflammatory and UV-protectant properties.
Vitamin C is a wonder for our bodies already because it helps boost our immune system and keep us from sickness. For our skin, it packs a huge benefit of encouraging collagen production, or the growth of new skin cells. Vitamin C may also help with protection from sun damage and has even been shown to help in reducing acne scars. Vitamin C is easy to find in a huge amount of foods and products, including citrus and many other fruits, tomatoes, and even potatoes.
This lesser-known ingredient is another great one for your skin. Some more common polyphenols that may sound familiar are resveratrol (found in grapes) and EGCG that is contained in green tea. Polyphenols, like many beneficial ingredients from food, work as antioxidants in your body to fight against things like free radicals, UV radiation, and environmental pollutants. Some studies suggest that diets high in polyphenols may even aid in the prevention of debilitating illnesses like cancer and neurological diseases. Foods that contain high amounts of polyphenols include many types of berries, spinach, and grapes.
Zinc is present in your skin in a big way, and plays an important part in collagen production, as well as healing the skin after an injury. It may also act as an antioxidant and help protect your skin from sun damage like many of the other ingredients talked about here. It can also help to reduce redness and inflammation. Foods that contain zinc include oysters, red meat, poultry, and also whole grains, dairy products, and beans. Zinc is widely known to be included in many types of sunscreen, as products high in zinc will show up as the telltale white streak on your skin.