When you feed your body nutritionally-dense and healing foods, you will reap the benefits from the inside and out. One amazing healing benefit of consuming a vegan diet rich in vitamins and in minerals is that it promotes clear skin, and can even help clear troublesome acne.
Instead of only fighting acne externally, it is important to remember that healing begins from within, and has everything to do with the foods you are ingesting. Here is how a vegan diet can change your skin for the better!
1. How a Vegan Diet can Improve Your Skin
It is first important to preface by explaining what causes acne. Acne develops on the skin when pores become clogged with dead skin. Sebum, or fatty materials, then build up within that clogged pore, inflicting a rise in bacteria and inflammation, otherwise known as a pimple. Facial cleansers, and over the counter acne treatments are marketed to unclog pores, and can definitely help on the surface, but there is a much better way to treat acne.
Nutrition plays a huge role in the well-being of your skin. Studies have shown that a diet rich in saturated fat can increase sebum production on the surface of your skin, clogging your pores and thus giving you acne. Furthermore, refined oils and animal fats have been linked to poor circulation which causes the skin to be more susceptible to acne. A lack of plant-derived antioxidants can also adversely affect the well-being of your skin.
In order to clear your skin, it is important to be mindful of what you are eating. A vegan whole-foods diet, low in saturated fat may be just the ticket for blemish-free skin. This is because with a plant-based diet you are taking out any and all animal fats that can amp up fatty materials in the skin, and also are increasing your intake of antioxidants found only in plant foods. When you are consuming a vegan diet, you are effortlessly increasing your free-radical fighting, antioxidant intake. So how exactly does an increased intake of antioxidants help cure acne?
When acne occurs, it is due to sebum oxidation. This is because the oxidation of sebum causes an increase in keratin, or the protein that binds together skin cells, and pore-clogging fatty materials. Antioxidants are used by the skin to prevent oxidative damage from ever occurring. This works because antioxidants are molecules that fight unstable molecules which would harm cell structures. They are able to neutralize these unstable molecules that would promote oxidative damage by giving electrons to them. Without these plant-based antioxidants, you are leaving sebum unprotected with the potential to oxidize and promote acne.
For the betterment of your skin, an increase in antioxidants found in plant-based food can only help!
2. The Best Antioxidants for your Skin
Raw Cranberry Chutney/One Green Planet
It is clear that foods high in saturated fat can promote acne, and that antioxidants work to heal the skin, but what foods are the best at clearing skin?
- Blueberries are rich in anthocyanin, a flavonoid with antioxidant properties that gives blueberries their deep-blue pigments. They are also high in vitamin C, another antioxidant linked to skin health because it aids in the synthesis of collagen in the skin.
- Goji Berries are characterized as superfoods because they contain a wide array of antioxidants, vitamins, and traces of minerals.
- Dark Chocolate or raw cacao has 40 times the amount of antioxidants as blueberries, and is exceeding delicious! It is also an excellent treat to have during a night of skincare pampering.
- Pecans are the best source of antioxidants in the nut family!
- Artichokes are chalk full of antioxidants and polyphenols, or disease-fighting compounds. They also contain vitamin C!
- Cranberries are filled with Vitamin A and C that has been shown to boost collagen in the skin, as well as antioxidants.
- Cilantro is a flavorful herb that fights sebum oxidation, and it is also an anti-inflammatory to combat irritated skin.
- Kidney Beans are rich in zinc, which can help repair damaged skin, and also contain skin-healing antioxidants!
Additionally, you can supplement with this Garden of Life Vitamin C!
3. Aligning Skincare with Nutrition
Show some love to your skin, by making nutrition a part of your skincare routine by including the foods above into your regular meal plan.
To help get you started, try this Raw Superfood Chocolate with Goji Berries, Chia Pudding with Blueberries, Paleo Pecan Pie Bars, 5 Ingredient Artichoke and Oregano Spread, Raw Cranberry Chutney, Cilantro Jalapeno Hummus, or these 6 Ingredient Oil-free Kidney Bean Burgers.
To acquire more about vegan skincare like The Benefits of Using Organic and Natural Skincare, we recommend downloading our Food Monster App, which is available for both Android and iPhone and can also be found on Instagram and Facebook. The app has more than 10,000 plant-based, allergy-friendly recipes, and subscribers gain access to new recipes every day. Check it out!
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