Long-Term Skin Health |
Healthy, well-balanced diets are beneficial to every organ in your body, including the skin. If you’re looking to promote healthy skin from the inside out for long-term skin health, make sure you’re getting foods rich in these key nutrients.
Vitamin A helps the skin function as a barrier to bacteria and viruses. Sources include carrots, cantaloupe, apricots, spinach and kale.
Vitamin C also protects cells from damage, helps maintain a healthy immune system and promotes wound healing, which can help you recover from dry skin. Citrus fruits such as oranges and grapefruit are great sources, as are broccoli, strawberries, cantaloupe, potatoes and tomatoes.
Vitamin E helps protect cells from damage. Sources include certain fortified breakfast cereals, sunflower seeds, almonds and peanut butter.
Folate (and folic acid, folate's synthetic counterpart) helps in the production and maintenance of cells. Sources include fortified breakfast cereals, spinach, beans, peas and asparagus.
Zinc helps the immune system fight off invaders and speeds up the healing process, so it is a vital nutrient in dry skin recovery. Oysters are the best source of zinc, but red meat, poultry, fortified breakfast cereals, beans and nuts are also good sources.
Water. Staying hydrated can help your skin retain necessary moisture. Aim for your eight cups of water daily—maybe more if you're still exhibiting signs of dehydration, which can include dry skin.
When it comes to dry skin, prevention is your best bet. In addition to eating a well-balanced diet, protect your skin from harsh conditions and lotion up regularly to help your skin retain moisture. If those rough patches still appear despite your diligence, see your doctor to avoid suffering from dry skin in any season.
This article has been reviewed and approved by Becky Hand, Licensed and Registered Dietitian.
American Academy of Dermatology. "Dry Skin," accessed September 2011. www.aad.org.
MedlinePlus. "Dry Skin," accessed September 2011. www.nlm.nih.gov.
National Institutes of Health Office of Dietary Supplements. "Folate," "Vitamin A and Carotenoids," "Vitamin E," "Vitamin C," and "Zinc,"accessed September 2011. www.ods.od.nih.gov.