The Foods for Dry Skin
Cold winter weather, a poor diet high in sugar and processed foods and an underactive thyroid can cause dry skin. Although hypothyroidism can only be treated by your doctor, nutritional deficiencies responsible for dry skin in general can be corrected by eating foods that help your skin retain optimal moisture levels. These foods include omega-3 fatty acids and foods rich in beta-carotene, sulfur, zinc and iodine.
Filtered Pure Water and Water-based Foods
Skin must be well-hydrated, and drinking plenty of pure, filtered water daily is one of the best ways to keep the moisture level of your skin balanced. Another way is to eat water-based vegetables and fruits, such as grapes, cantaloupe, oranges, cucumbers, tomatoes, celery, onions and green peppers.
Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Omega-3 fatty acids found in cold-water fish may help make skin less sensitive to ultraviolet rays, says the University of Maryland Medical Center. Eating fish, especially salmon, and avoiding red meat are ways to promote and maintain healthy skin because a diet high in saturated fats can cause skin aging. Unrefined, cold-pressed flaxseed oil is also a source of omega-3s, and it can be used on salads and vegetable dishes baked at low temperatures. Heating oils promotes free-radical production that can destroy skin health. Avoid heat-processed vegetable oils and fried foods.
Foods Containing Sulfur
Sulfur baths seem to benefit people suffering from skin disorders, according to the University of Maryland Medical Center, and eating foods containing sulfur may promote skin rejuvenation and keep skin moist, smooth and supple. Foods high in sulfur content include asparagus, eggs, onions and garlic, although sulfur is found in many fruits and vegetables, milk and whole grains.
Foods Containing Iodine
Iodine deficiency can interfere with thyroid hormone production and cause hypothyroidism, a serious illness characterized by symptoms such as fatigue, depression, constipation and dry, coarse hair and skin. Although this condition must be treated medically, it highlights the importance of iodine in the diet for skin health, according to the University of Michigan Health System. Iodine is found in iodine-rich table salt, seafood, haddock, perch, sea bass, cod, kelp and dairy products.
Foods Rich in Vitamins A, B and C
Foods rich in vitamins A, B and C have antioxidants that help repair and renew skin. These foods include those rich in beta-carotene such as yellow and red peppers and dark green leafy vegetables like spinach which also contain pantothenic acid necessary for the synthesis of oils used by the skin. Carrots, orange and yellow squash, apricots, blueberries and strawberries are other choices. Foods such as cheese, beef and eggs contain vitamin B2 that helps your skin glow. Lentils, nut and whole grains are also high in B vitamins. Vitamin A helps the growth of new skin and is found in oily fish, milk and eggs.
Foods Rich in Zinc
Sardine, oysters, pumpkin seeds and wheat germ are foods rich in zinc that help repair skin damage, such as dry, itchy, flaking skin, and promote skin softness.
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