04 February 2011

How to Get Perfect Skin | Foods & Herbs for Natural Skin Health

Photo Credit: Getty Images

There are plenty of lotions, creams, masks, pastes, and any number of other products out there to improve your skin’s health, but most of them are so expensive that they threaten to break the bank. It’s also eye-opening to read the long lists of ingredients in these products – many contain chemicals and unnatural components that can irritate sensitive skin. Even if you’ve found an inexpensive and natural skin care product that truly improves your skin’s health, it’s important to do everything you can to keep your skin as healthy as possible. Fortunately, it’s easy to do that by eating specific foods and enjoying some herbs in teas or as spices in your favorite meals. If the following foods and herbs aren’t already a part of your diet, you might consider adding some of them to see visible improvements in your skin.

Reduce Redness & Puffiness

For anyone who has sensitive skin, redness can be a serious problem. Personally, I tend to get a red rash across my cheeks that refuses to be completely covered by makeup. In addition to seeing a dermatologist, I’m adding these foods to my diet to help control my redness problem:

• Organic apples: the peel is rich in quercetin, which is a powerful anti-inflammatory agent that can prevent skin irritation and redness.
• Cranberry juice: the bioflavonoids found in cranberries can decrease the size of blood vessels just under the skin’s surface and minimize their appearance.
• Parsley: this herb is a natural blood purifier and can reduce any puffiness you might notice in your skin.
Hydrate & Moisturize
In the winter, dry skin can be frustrating, but don’t let it affect your complexion. Prevent dry, itchy skin by keeping it hydrated when you add these foods to your diet:
• Flaxseed oil: you can find a flaxseed supplement at your local health food store or vitamin shop. It’s naturally rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which enables it to moisturize the layers of skin below the surface, preventing dry skin before you ever see it.
• Salmon: this particular fish is also an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids, so eating it is a great way to keep your skin moisturized and make your dry skin problems disappear.

Clear Your Complexion

Just imagine being able to prevent breakouts by adding some healthy foods to your diet. It’s possible when you add one or more of the following items to your plate each day:

• Fresh lemon juice: drink some mixed with water every day, and you’ll notice a clearer complexion due to your increased vitamin C intake.
• Yogurt: take advantage of these natural probiotics, which can detoxify your skin from the inside out and prevent blemishes from occurring.
• Fennel seed: add this spice to your meals, and you’ll be preventing breakouts by helping your body digest food more efficiently and get rid of toxins before they show up on your skin. You can find it with the other spices at your favorite grocery store.
• Turmeric: here’s another spice that can keep your skin clear. This one works by preventing infection, which means no more blemishes on your face.

Keep Skin Youthful

You don’t need designer anti-aging products. All you need to keep your skin looking young and resilient are the following foods:

• Olive oil: the natural antioxidants in this healing oil will keep your skin looking supple and fresh. Use it in salad dressings or when you’re cooking meals.
• Sweet potatoes: enjoying these as a regular part of your diet can boost your antioxidant intake, helping your skin produce collagen and stay young.
• Ginger: get that healthy glow by boosting circulation with this tasty root-derived spice. It also reduces inflammation naturally, ensuring that your skin looks rosy instead of red. Try drinking ginger-infused green tea to get both antioxidants and anti-inflammatory benefits.

This is a guest post from Lisa Shoreland. Lisa is currently a resident blogger at Go College where recently she's been researching education grants and blogging about student life. In her spare time, she enjoys creative writing and hogging her boyfriend’s PlayStation 3. To keep her sanity she enjoys practicing martial arts and bringing home abandon animals.

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