Vital Vitamins

What you put in your body affects your skin, too.

It isn’t only the creams you put on your skin but what you put into your body that give you healthy skin. The American Academy of Dermatology says that vitamins and minerals play an integral role in a beautiful complexion. But what vitamins are good for healthy skin? Here is a quick overview of which vitamins and minerals really nourish your skin: Vitamins C and E are important for skin. Exposure to climate causes unavoidable wear on your skin, C and E help prevent the serious consequences. How? By reducing damage caused by “free radicals” from sunlight (tanning), smoke and pollution; all of which destroy collagen and elastin – it’s these fibers that support skin structure and keep it firm and wrinkle free.

Citrus fruits and many vegetables such as broccoli, bell peppers, cauliflower and leafy greens are rich in vitamin C. Try foods rich in antioxidants, such as blueberries, blackberries, strawberries and plums. Ask your physician about adding 500 to 1,000 milligrams per day of vitamin C to your diet.

Vitamin E soothes rough, dry skin and is naturally present in foods such as vegetable oils, nuts, seeds, olives, spinach and asparagus. Four hundred international units per day or less are considered safe. An overdose of vitamin C or E can lead to serious health hazards, so please talk with your physician before you start supplements.

Vitamin A maintains and repairs skin tissues; a deficiency can lead to a dry, flaky complexion. vitamin A plays an important role in reducing lines and wrinkles, controlling acne and can offer some psoriasis relief. Most fruits and vegetables are packed with vitamin A.

Vitamin B Complex, specifically biotin, is a component of skin, nail and hair cells. A deficiency can cause dermatitis, itchy, scaly skin or hair loss. Creams containing vitamin B can help hydrate skin cells and increase overall skin tone instantaneously.

Vitamin K works well to reduce dark circles under the eyes and bruises.

Silica is a trace mineral that helps in healing and is also good for firming skin, and strengthening tendons, nails, cartilage, bones, hair and ligaments. Leeks, beans, strawberries, cucumber, celery and mango are some of the common sources of silica.

Zinc is a mineral that helps in controlling the skin’s oil production. It is very effective in treating acne, and is wonderful for the immune system and eyesight.

Omega 3 isn’t only a great nutrient for heart function, it’s one of the essential fatty acids (EFAs) needed by the body to have healthy skin. It promotes moisture, repair and elasticity of the skin. Good sources of Omega 3 include safflower oil, mackerel and flaxseed and baked soybeans.

Selenium is a powerful antioxidant that promotes tissue elasticity, protects the cells from the damage caused by free radicals and is also linked to the prevention of skin and breast cancer. Sources of selenium include eggs, nuts, salmon, garlic, brown rice and wheat bread.

Maintaining healthy skin through exercise and a good skin care routine isn’t always enough; what we eat is just
as important to obtain healthy, glowing skin – after all, our skin protects us so it deserves all the nutrition we can give it.

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