Everyone wants smooth, radiant skin. What you eat can bring you closer to that goal. While there is no magic food that whisks the wrinkles away, the basics are simple. And chances are, you know them by heart:
- Go for items that are naturally jammed with nutrients, like fruits, veggies, whole grains, nuts, fish, and other types of lean protein.
- Change things up. Go for a variety of foods, so you get all the vitamins and minerals you need.
- Think beyond the plate. Sleep, exercise, and sunscreen still count, no matter what you eat.
"All of these things will help you look and feel younger," says dietitian Elisa Zied, author of Younger Next Week.
Ready to get specific about what to put on your grocery list? These seven foods are a great place to start.
"I recommend complex carbohydrates like oats because they're low-glycemic," says New York dermatologist Debra Jaliman, MD, author of Skin Rules.
By "low-glycemic," she means foods that don't spike your blood sugar like refined breads, rice, and pasta can. "High-glycemic foods are known to cause acne and wrinkles," Jaliman says.
Oats also have a natural plant chemical that helps prevent damage to skin cells and soothes skin irritation.
Also try: other whole grains such as shredded wheat, barley, brown rice.
These are loaded with water, so they hydrate your skin and your cells, Zied says. One large orange is an excellent source of vitamin C, which helps make collagen -- and that, in turn, helps keep your skin supple.
In general, vegetables and fruits are great for your skin. Go for lots of colors so you get a variety of nutrients.
Also try: pink grapefruit, tomatoes, parsley.
These are filled with a healthy type of fat, monounsaturated fat, which helps your skin stay hydrated, Zied says. That same healthy fat can also help you absorb some vitamins and nutrients that your skin needs.
Try replacing high-fat salad dressings and mayo with avocado. "It gives you a lot of flavor and texture, and you don't need much to feel satisfied," Zied says.
Also try: olive oil, walnuts, macadamia nut oil.