Your skin is your largest organ. It protects you from injury. It keeps out germs, bacteria and viruses. It helps to keep you warm and at the same time can help you from over-heating. And it protects you from the elements.
Like your other organs, your skin is vulnerable to disease. To stay healthy, it needs some special nutrients. Because your skin is on the outside of your body, it is often noticeable when something becomes unbalanced. Psoriasis, wrinkles, acne and eczema can take hold and cause itching, dryness and swelling. To prevent these conditions from developing, or to reduce symptoms if you already have them, here’s a short list of four must-haves for healthy skin:
1. Vitamin A
Vitamin A is necessary for maintaining and repairing skin tissue. Topical vitamin A has been shown to relieve psoriasis, reduce wrinkles, and prevent acne. Boost your vitamin A intake by eating lots of colorful veggies, as well as dark leafy green ones.
2. Vitamin E
The vitamin E family is full of antioxidants. These antioxidants can protect you from the barrage of free radicals attacking your skin every day. Ultraviolet rays from the sun, pollutants in the air, and toxins in the food you eat can all take a toll on your skin. Use vitamin E to ward off these ill effects. Boost your vitamin E intake by eating wheat germ oil and nuts and seeds.
3. Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Omega-3 fatty acids have been proven to keep skin cells moist and strong. In particular, an essential fatty acid called linolenic acid helps to prevent moisture loss and dehydration of the skin. Make sure you are getting enough omega-3s in your diet (according to some statistics, 99% of Americans aren’t getting enough) to protect against dry skin problems. Omega-3 fatty acids can be found in fish, nuts and seeds, and oils.
Like most of your body, your skin cells need water. Keep your skin healthy and youthful by drinking plenty of filtered water each day. Water helps flush toxins from the skin and restores moisture lost during hot and/or dry conditions. Don’t forget this simple strategy, as it could actually make a big difference in the health of your skin.