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The 10 Best Foods for Healthy Skin

As beauty products get more high-tech, the top complexion cures still come from the most natural quarters: the aisles of your supermarket. 

Here are 10 foods that will nourish your skin from the inside and out.


1. Fatty Fish

Fatty fish, are excellent foods for healthy skin. They are rich sources of omega-3 fatty acids, which are important for maintaining skin health

Omega-3 fatty acids are necessary to keep the skin thick and moisturized. In fact, a deficiency in omega-3 fats can cause dry skin.

The omega-3 fats found in fish reduce inflammation, which can be the cause of redness and acne, and even make your skin less sensitive to the sun's harmful UV rays.

Fatty fish is also a source of vitamin E, which is one of the most important antioxidants for the skin. Getting enough vitamin E is essential for protecting the skin against damage from free radicals and inflammation.

They're also a source of high-quality protein, which is necessary to make the structural proteins that maintain the strength and integrity of the skin.

2. Walnuts

Walnuts are long known as an excellent food for healthy skin.

They are a good source of essential fatty acids, which are fats that your body cannot make itself.

In fact, they are richer than most other nuts in both omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids

What's more, walnuts contain other nutrients that your skin needs to function properly and stay healthy.

3. Sunflower Seeds

One ounce (28 grams) of sunflower seeds contains 32% of the RDI for the antioxidant selenium, 10% of the RDI for zinc and 5.4 grams of protein

This amount also contains 37% of the RDI for vitamin E, which is a great way to make sure you're getting enough of this important vitamin and antioxidant.

Additionally, sunflower seeds are an excellent source of linoleic acid, an essential omega-6 fat that helps your skin stay thick, flexible and moisturized 

In a large observational study of more than 4,000 women, a high intake of linoleic acid was associated with a lower risk of dry and thin skin as a result of aging 

4. Avocados

Avocados are high in healthy fats. These fats benefit many functions in your body, including the health of your skin.

Getting enough of these fats is important for keeping skin flexible and moisturized.

One study of over 700 women found that a high intake of total fat, specifically the types of healthy fats found in avocados, was associated with having more supple, springy skin 

Preliminary evidence also shows that avocados contain compounds that may protect the skin against sun damage. UV damage to the skin can cause signs of aging, such as wrinkling.

Avocados are also a good source of vitamin E, which is an important antioxidant that helps protect the skin from oxidative damage. Vitamin E is also a nutrient most Americans don't get enough of.

Interestingly, vitamin E seems to be even more effective when it's combined with vitamin C

Vitamin C is also essential for healthy skin. Your skin needs it to create collagen which is the main structural protein that keeps your skin strong and healthy 

A deficiency in vitamin C is rare these days, but common symptoms include dry, rough, scaly skin that tends to bruise easily.

Vitamin C is also an antioxidant that protects your skin from oxidative damage caused by the sun and environment, which can lead to signs of aging.

A 100-gram serving (about 1/2 an avocado) provides 10% of the RDI for vitamin E and 17% of the RDI for vitamin C

5. Sweet Potatoes

Beta-carotene is a nutrient found in plants.

It can be converted into vitamin A in the body, and it's found in orange and dark-green vegetables such as carrots, spinach, and sweet potatoes.

Sweet Potatoes are an excellent source of it.

One 1/2-cup serving (100 grams) of baked sweet potato contains enough beta-carotene to provide nearly four times the RDI of vitamin A.

Carotenoids like beta-carotene help keep your skin healthy by acting as a natural sunblock.

When consumed, this antioxidant is incorporated into your skin and protects your skin cells from sun exposure. This may help prevent sunburn, cell death and the resulting effects of dry, wrinkled skin.

Interestingly, beta-carotene may also add a warm, orange color to your skin, contributing to an overall healthier look.

6. Broccoli

Broccoli is full of many vitamins and minerals, including zinc, vitamin A, and vitamin C.

Broccoli florets also contain a special compound called sulforaphane, which seems to have some impressive health benefits. It may even have anti-cancer effects, including on some types of skin cancer.

Sulforaphane is also a powerful protective agent against sun damage. It works in two ways: by neutralizing harmful free radicals and turning on other protective systems in the body.

In the lab, sulforaphane reduces the number of skin cells killed by UV light by as much as 29%, and the protection lasts for up to 48 hours. There is also evidence that it helps maintain collagen levels in the skin. 

7. Dark Chocolate

Consuming cocoa can really affect your health.

One study found that after 6–12 weeks of consuming a cocoa powder high in antioxidants, participants experience thicker, more hydrated skin.

Their skin was also less rough and scaly, less sensitive to sunburn and had better blood flow, which brings more nutrients to the skin.

Another study found that regularly eating just 20 grams of dark chocolate high in antioxidants per day could allow the skin to withstand more than twice as much UV radiation before burning, compared to eating chocolate low in antioxidants 

8. Green Tea

Green Tea may also have the ability to protect your skin from damage and aging.

The powerful compounds found in green tea are called catechins, and they work to protect and improve the health of your skin in several ways.

Like several other antioxidant-containing foods, regularly consuming green tea can help protect your skin against sun damage.


9. Red Wine

Red wine is famous for containing resveratrol, a compound that comes from the skin of red grapes.

Resveratrol is credited with a wide range of health benefits, and reducing the effects of aging is one the most well-known.

The skin has specific binding sites for resveratrol. When applied to the skin, this compound has been shown to slow skin's aging.

When consumed, it's also able to reduce the production of harmful free radicals, which damage skin cells and cause signs of aging.

10. Tomatoes

Tomatoes are a great source of vitamin C and contain all of the major carotenoids, including lycopene.

Beta-carotene, lutein, and lycopene have been shown to protect the skin against damage from the sun and may also help prevent wrinkling.

Because tomatoes contain all of the major carotenoids, they are an excellent food for maintaining healthy skin.

However, carotenoids need fat to be absorbed, so be sure to pair tomatoes with something like cheese or olive oil.

Final Thoughts

You know that old saying, "you are what you eat?"

A healthy diet leads to a healthy body, and vice versa.

What you eat also affects the way you look on the outside, right down to your skin.

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