Like other parts of the body, skin is also a living organ. The more you nurture it the more it will glow. Nurturing doesn’t mean applying plenty of cosmetics or artificial products, but it indicates maintaining good nutrition to have radiant skin.
In the present scenario, there are a lot of factors like pollution, harmful UV rays, stress, hormonal imbalance, improper dietary habits etc. that lead to the deterioration of your skin quality. Applying chemicals to the skin doesn’t make you look good, they can just embellish you for some time. You need to nourish your skin from deep inside while avoiding practices that cause unnecessary stress. Stress is not something that you can completely avoid but definitely, you can minimize that through various lifestyle practices like, doing yoga on regular basis, excluding foods in regular diet that increase stress (junk food, too much tea or coffee, too much sugar or desserts etc) and including foods that nourish your skin. Including foods which are rich in protein, good fats like omega 3 & 6, vitamin A, vitamin C, calcium, zinc, selenium, magnesium, and manganese.
Below are some food items that you must include in your diet to have a glowing and nourished skin.
1. Quinoa: Quinoa is a superfood, rich in various nutrients like protein, iron, magnesium, manganese, folate, zinc, omega 3 & 6, Quercetin (antioxidant), phytochemicals etc. Researches show that the various nutrients present in Quinoa plays an important role in the treatment and prevention of skin ageing. It also contains lysine, an essential amino acid and hence it supports the healing of scars and rejuvenates your skin. Quinoa can be prepared in different styles like Indian porridge style, Quinoa- yoghurt style or Quinoa water. It is very beneficial for skin as well as overall health.
2. Amaranth: Amaranth is a perennial plant, whose leaves and seeds are edible. It is a very rich source of protein, manganese, calcium, fiber and phyto-nutrients. It also consists of Vitamin E that fights with some DNA damaging free radicals, hence making the skin glow. It also keeps the skin infused with essential fatty acids which are good for dry skin. Amaranth Soup or stew, amaranth porridge, amaranth vegetables are some good preparations that you can consider to include in your diet.
3. Barley/ Oats Water: Barley is a grain packed with a number of nutrients. It consists of azelaic acid which helps in reducing acne and skin inflammation. It is also a rich source of protein, carbohydrate, manganese, selenium, copper, vitamin B1, phosphorus, magnesium and vitamin B3. Barley water can be termed as a miracle drink with numerous benefits which include glowing skin as well. Adding lemon wedges, ginger and mint to barley water adds to its taste, as well as enhances its skin care properties.
Oats too are a very good source of phosphorus, copper, biotin, vitamin B1, magnesium, dietary fiber, chromium, zinc, and protein. Oats water acts as a cleansing agent, hence drinking it is very beneficial against pimples, skin spots and dullness. The proteins present in oats protect your skin against infections, and the fats in it give a moisturizing effect to your skin.
4. Kefir: Kefir is a superfood, that is made by fermenting cow’s, goat’s or sheep’s milk by kefir grains. It consists a wide range of nutrients that includes vitamin B12, calcium, magnesium, vitamin K2, biotin, folate, enzymes, and probiotics. It is also rich in lactic acid, that is one of the AHAs (present in most of the skin care cosmetics), and so it inhibits melanin formation in skin (responsible for darkening of your skin) and brightens your skin complexion. It also prevents wrinkles and premature aging.
5. Yogurt: Yoghurt is a rich source of B vitamins, zinc, calcium, phosphorus, riboflavin, lactic acid, and probiotics. Zinc has anti- inflammatory properties and so it helps in preventing acne, lactic acid in it gives moisturizing effect to the skin and calcium helps in skin renewal. Adding yogurt to your diet helps in maintaining a glowing and hydrated skin, it is very beneficial for dry skin.
6. Sunflower & Pumpkin Seeds: Sunflower seeds are a very rich source of copper, vitamin E, vitamin B1, vitamin B6, selenium, manganese, phosphorus, magnesium, folate, and niacin. On the other hand, pumpkin seeds are rich in manganese, magnesium, copper, protein, zinc and phytosterols. Both of them prevents aging, skin tanning and provide you a radiant skin. Pumpkin seeds are also helpful against acne.
7. Fenugreek & Cinnamon: Fenugreek leaves and seeds, both are edible. They are packed with calcium, iron, potassium, selenium, copper, zinc, manganese and magnesium. They possess anti-ageing properties and are also beneficial against skin spots and wrinkles. Cinnamon sticks are rich in fiber, manganese, calcium, iron and Vitamin K. Both of them encases a lot of medicinal properties as well as helps your skin look beautiful. The best way to utilize them for your skin is, you can soak little fenugreek seeds and cinnamon stick overnight in water or just simply boil both of them in water for 10 minutes. Sieve it and consume it on an empty stomach. Consistent usage of this water provides you amazingly glowing skin.
8. Figs & Walnuts: Figs are packed with vitamin B, vitamin C, phosphorus, potassium, calcium, and magnesium. Walnuts are a very rich source of omega 3, 6, zinc, antioxidants like vitamin E, vitamin C, and selenium. Both of them are miraculous in terms of their health benefits as well as skin care. Adding 2-3 piece of figs and walnuts in your regular diet revitalizes your skin and fills your skin with youthful vigor.
9. Flaxseeds & Chia Seeds: Flaxseeds are rich in omega 3, vitamin B1, manganese, magnesium, phosphorus, selenium, whereas chia seeds packed with a good amount of calcium, manganese, magnesium and phosphorus. 1-1 tsp of flaxseeds and chia seeds consumed every day helps in the removal of skin spots as well as give moisturizing effect to your skin. The best time to consume them is in the morning. You can dry roast both of them and add them with the milk-cereal in the morning (breakfast), or else you can have them directly also.
10. Saffron: Saffron, more commonly known as kesar acts as a wonder food for skin. It is loaded with various micro-nutrients like copper, calcium, manganese, iron, selenium, zinc and magnesium. Add a pinch of pure saffron in milk, boil it and have it on regular basis. It improves the complexion miraculously as well as removes spots and dullness from skin. It also possesses anti-ageing properties.
11. Berries & Avocados: Berries and avocados are rich in antioxidants, B vitamins, vitamin K, manganese, folate, omega-3 fatty acids, magnesium, and copper. Adding berries or avocados to your diet again improves the quality of your skin. There are different kinds of berries available like strawberries, blueberries, goji berries, acai berries, bilberries etc. You can consume them as fresh fruit, dry fruit or in the form of squashes.
12. Watermelon: Watermelon is a very rich source of lycopene, amino acids, various vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. Lycopene present in it acts as an antioxidant and hence protects the skin against UV rays. Moreover, it constitutes around 90 % of water which keeps your skin well hydrated. Consuming a lot of watermelon in summers, keeps both you and your skin refreshed. You can also make a drink of it by blending it and adding lemon, mint, and a pinch of black salt for taste.
13. Bell Peppers: Bell Peppers are packed with phytochemicals and carotenoids. Beta-carotenes present in it act as a precursor of vitamin A, which helps in the tightening and renewal of skin. Phytochemicals present in it also helps in the lightening of skin tone as well as protects against UV rays.
14. Beet-Carrot Tomato Juice: Blend equal amount of beetroot and carrot, and tomatoes half their quantity together. Sieve the blended paste. Add lemon, mint, ginger and black salt for taste to it. You can add little pomegranate too for adding taste and nutrition to this juice. This juice includes nutrients like B vitamins, vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin K, pantothenic acid, folate, iron, copper, and manganese and hence it is very beneficial for your skin as well as health.
15. Fish: Fish such as mackerel, salmon etc, are a very rich source of protein, omega 3, 6, vitamin E and zinc. They prevent inflammation of skin, aging, spots, dullness as well as protect your skin against harmful UV rays.
16. Extra Virgin Coconut Oil: Coconut oil is a rich source of saturated fat, monounsaturated fatty acids, polyunsaturated fatty acids as well as various vitamins and minerals. You should not take it in higher amounts, but 1-2 tsp of extra virgin coconut oil taken every day is good for your health as well as your skin. It makes your skin glow naturally and also gives it a moisturizing effect. It is very good for people with dry skin.
17. Detox Juices (Apple Cider Vinegar, Aloe Vera Juice & Wheatgrass Juice): Detox juices help in the cleansing of your blood stream, by flushing out the toxins from your body. They also keep your skin well hydrated and protect against acne and dark spots. All detox water or detox juices (Apple Cider Vinegar, Aloe Vera Juice & Wheatgrass Juice etc) are rich in antioxidants and are packed with amazing skin enhancing properties. You can even make different types of detox water at home itself.
18. Green Tea: Green tea is rich in antioxidants and it fights with the free radicals present in the body. It possesses anti- inflammatory and anti- aging properties prevents wrinkles, fights skin diseases and keeps your skin well hydrated. It helps in the cleansing of your pores thus giving you a radiant skin.
Pick any of the items from the above mentioned foods to keep your skin rejuvenating. Lastly, including plenty of fluids say water, lemon water, coconut water, squashes, etc. are of utmost importance for your skin. Have more and more of fluids to keep your skin hydrated. Do not invest a lot on expensive skin care products unnecessarily, instead, nurture the roots by including proper nutrition in your diet.