Kate Johnston on how to have beautiful skin from the inside out
Radiant, beautiful skin is created by more than just the products you put on the outside. In fact, if we stop to think about the skin – what it actually is and what it does, we realise that our best chance of creating glowing skin is from the inside, out.
Did you know that the skin is the largest organ of the body, and is one of the most vital organs of detoxification?
Did you ALSO know that the skin is constantly turning over new cells, and that you have completely replaced all of your skin in about four to eight weeks?
By giving your body the right building blocks, and keeping your other systems functioning optimally, you could be on your way to better skin in just a few short months. So what are my top 5 building blocks for glowing skin?
Good fats – Think coconut oil, olive oil, flaxseed oil, butter, ghee and avocado. Consuming the right types of fats will help to moisturise your skin from the inside. Many of these fats also possess anti-inflammatory properties, which can help to relieve conditions such as eczema, psoriasis and acne. Eating the wrong types of fats (such as those from cheap fried, commercial foods, margarine and vegetable oils) on the other hand, can promote inflammation as well as constricting blood flow which results in less nutrition being able to reach the skin.
Zinc – this is one of the most important nutrients for skin health (as well as many other conditions), however, due to our modern farming and food manufacturing processes it is extremely depleted from our food supply. The richest food source of zinc is oysters with a whopping 30-50mg per half dozen serve. Or if oysters aren’t quite your thing, you can include foods such as grass fed meat, tahini, pepitas (pumkin seeds), cashews or pecans. Please note, that Australia has the second most depleted soil worldwide when it comes to zinc, so it is best to source your nuts and seeds from Middle Eastern countries where the zinc is more plentiful in the soil.
Hydration – even mild dehydration can make the skin appear less plump, more tired, dry and dull. While water is the best choice for rehydrating, coconut water, fresh vegetable juice or herbal tea can also be substituted on occasion. When drinking herbal teas, why not up the skin enhancing qualities by choosing herbs such as nettle, burdock, calendula or dandelion, which act to move the lymphatic system and gently clear toxins from the body.
Vitamin C – not only is vitamin C a fantastic anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory, but it also supports the production of collagen – one of the most abundant proteins in the human body, that is responsible for giving skin it’s strength, elasticity and ability to regenerate. Vitamin C also helps to strengthen capillaries – the small blood vessels that bring nutrients to the skin. The richest food sources of vitamin C include berries, citrus fruits, kiwi fruit and capsicum, however here in Australia we are lucky enough to also have the Kakadu Plum (Gubinge), which is known to be the world’s highest vitamin C containing food – approximately 100 times greater than oranges! You can purchase gubinge powder from Loving Earth to add to smoothies, juices or bliss balls.
Bone Broth – forget Botox or anti-ageing treatments, and instead turn to bone broth! Broth is a rich source of collagen, which as mentioned above can help to fight wrinkles and promote skin elasticity.
Furthermore, the gelatin in broth can help to soothe and heal the digestive tract, aiding in the reduction of inflammation, the assimilation of other vitamins and minerals, as well as reducing the risk of food intolerances (which can wreak havoc with the skin!). You can find a recipe for broth here.