The Pretty Skin Diet

Harper s Bazaar
Healthy Living
January 28, 2014

When it comes to having a gorgeous complexion, you truly are what you eat.

Maintaining a consistent skincare routine that utilizes a powerful mix of anti-agers to reverse as well as prevent future damage is key to having youthful, radiant skin. However, it's not the only link in the quest for reaching skin nirvana. What you eat-and what you skip-day to day plays a vital role in the integrity and appearance of your skin. Nicole Avena, PhD, a nutrition expert and author of Why Diets Fail, shares some of the top foods that will solve, as well as halt, the main universal skincare concerns.

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To get smoother, line-free skin: It's as simple as remember to a vast array of fruits and veggies.

WHAT TO EAT: Strawberries, peppers, oranges, broccoli, pineapples, kale, papaya, and kiwis.

"Each of these are rich in vitamin C, an antioxidant involved in collagen synthesis, among other essential skin functions," explains Avena. "While the precise mechanism by which vitamin C works to protect against wrinkles remains uncertain, research proves that the connection is real." In a study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, researchers showed a link between high vitamin C intake and fewer wrinkles than those who didn't eat ample amounts of the antioxidant as well as consumed far more carbohydrates and fat.

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For clear, flawless skin: Boost your intake of fish and vegetables every day.

WHAT TO EAT: Leafy greens such as collard greens and spinach as well as fresh, organic fish like wild salmon.

Fish contain omega-3 fatty acids and vegetables typically contain numerous nutrients, including vitamins A and C, all crucial for skin health," says Avena. A study published in the European Journal of Dermatology demonstrated that those who do not show signs of breakouts ate significantly more fish and vegetables than those with consistent acne. "This suggests a potential role for these foods in protecting against the development of acne," explains Avena. While another study published in the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology also found evidence that fish has a protective effect against acne.

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For healthy, hydrated skin: Swap your morning and afternoon coffee for tea.

WHAT TO DRINK: Organic caffeine-free green tea.

"Green tea contains a large amount of antioxidants called polyphenols, and a recent study in the Journal of Nutrition, found green tea to increase skin hydration and increase both blood flow and oxygen to the skin," explains Avena.

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