Take care of your outside, by giving your insides a little TLC.
It’s true that beauty does originate from within. But just how seriously should we take this age-old adage? As it turns out, we should all be taking it quite literally. Acne vulgaris and rosacea are incredibly common skin conditions. About 1.35 million people spend more than $500 or more on skincare products – and this is completely understandable. When your skin is not at its best, your self-confidence can be greatly impacted. Many people with moderate to severe acne report that they no longer want to be seen in public because of the sheer damage acne have done to their self-esteem. But are topical skin treatments always the most effective path to go down?
Diet is an extremely significant factor when it comes to the condition of your skin. Dermatologist Dr. Howard Murad, known the world over for his extensive skin care research, argues that up to 80% of our skin is affected by what we consume. The skin is our largest organ, so it makes sense that we should be feeding it correctly just as we would our heart or liver. Sure, we know what isn’t good for us – a diet that is high in refined sugar and full of preservatives won’t do anybody’s skin any favours. But what foods are going to be a force for good for our skin? This is where skin food supplements come into play.
What Are Skin Food Supplements?
Skinfood supplements are also known as skin care or dietary supplements. They add vitamins and nutrients to your diet that is beneficial for the on-going care of your skin. These supplements can come in the form of a pill or a powder. Powdered supplements or ‘beauty powders’ are they are often called, tend to be more versatile. You can add them to seamlessly to water or smoothies, making it easier to incorporate them into your daily routine.
When you digest a supplement, it enters your bloodstream and effectively gets to work on your skin ‘from the inside out’. This differs from topical treatments that rely on your skin’s ability to absorb them ‘from the outside in’. Supplements recommended by a medical professional are likely to contain more basic ingredients. If you’re told to take more magnesium, for example, the packaging will probably read “Each capsule contains: Magnesium 52.7mg”. Other supplements will contain more organically sourced, natural type ingredients, like acai or rosehip extract. It all depends which brand and type of supplement suit you and your lifestyle best.
What Can Skin Food Supplements Do for Our Skin?
For your skin to thrive, the following components need to healthy and firing on all cylinders –
- Your immune system
- Your Intestines
- Your hormones
- Your circulatory system
- Your detox functions
This is a lot for any one person to consider when they do their grocery shopping. That’s why skin food supplements are so convenient. They take the stress out of planning a skin-friendly healthy diet. Skinfood supplements, depending on the ingredients and differing brands, can assist with
- Reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles
- Reducing the size of pores (this is great news for the black-head prone amongst us!)
- Improving collagen production (collagen is what gives your skin its youthful elasticity. The body begins to slow its production of collagen from about the age of 26)
- Reducing inflammation and redness
- Improved hydration of the skin
This is by no means an exhaustive list. No matter your skin condition, the right supplement is out there for you, it’s just a matter of finding it. This can be easier said than done. Since celebrities have started sharing their skin care supplement success stories, the market has exploded. Just from glancing at all the different packaging and labels, it can be tricky to determine what ingredients are best for you. Let’s examine a few common ingredients found in the organic skin food supplements.
Common Ingredients & Their Properties
We can get so accustomed to reading the names of these ingredients on labels. We absorb the information on auto-pilot, vaguely knowing that these foods are ‘good for our skin’. But we never really question why they are beneficial, or how they work. Here are some natural ingredients you are likely to find in the skin food supplement aisle, and why they firmly belong there.
Acai berry, acai powder and acai juice are frequently included in skin care supplements. Originating from the Acai palm that is native to Brazil, acai berries are dark-purple in colour and resemble a small grape. In terms of taste, people often liken it to a combination of a dark berry and chocolate.
Acai is beneficial for our skin because of its antioxidant properties, its Vitamin C, B and E content, and the fatty acids that can also be found in it. Antioxidants protect your skin from free-radicals and environmental stressors – which is why you’ll often find acai in anti-ageing supplements. Vitamins C, B and E are all greater for firmer and tightening the skin. Additionally, the fatty acids found in acai (omega 3, omega 6 and omega 9) keep your skin supple and smooth.
You might not recognise noni at first, but that is because it goes by so many different names! The Morinda citrifolia tree bears noni fruit, also known as Indian mulberry, beach mulberry or cheese fruit to list but a few aliases. Noni Skin food supplements or powder included are often designed to target the signs of ageing and reduce inflammation of the skin.
Noni fruit is another ingredient that is full of antioxidants and fatty acids. These fatty acids allow cell membranes to function more optimally so that they can absorb nutrients and flush out toxins. Noni can also assist with increasing your collagen production, which combats tired, dull skin and helps any acne scars heal
Rosehip is a by-product of the rose plant, often the dog rose or the wild rose. Rosehip is considered a fruit and can be found growing wild. This ingredient is rich in vitamin C, which helps your skin fight the damage done by the sun’s UV rays. Rosehip is also full of linoleic acid, which is excellent for anyone that is acne prone. Linoleic acid reduces inflammation and redness and helps speed up the acne-healing process.
There is a misconception that rosehip is the only natural occurring flora to contain retinol. Rosehip oil does, however, contain tretinoin, which is what retinol converts to.
Matcha is a finely ground powder, made from shade-grown green tea leaves. The tea trees are covered during the harvesting process and, to compensate for this lack of light, they subsequently produce masses of chlorophyll. Not only does this chlorophyll account for the alluring dark green colour of matcha, but it acts as a powerful detoxifier when ingested.
This helps purge toxins from your system, giving you a more blemish free complexion. This is another ingredient that fights the signs of ageing and inflammation, hence its often included in skin food supplements.
Making Skin Food Supplements Part of Your Routine
The key to making supplements a part of your daily skin care routine is to make it a habit. Once taking skin food supplements becomes as second nature as brushing your teeth, then you will have succeeded.
If you buy your supplements in the pill format, leave them in a place that you frequently inhabit. That way, every time you go to make a coffee or get a glass of water, you’ll be reminded to take your supplements.
As previously mentioned, the wonderful thing about powdered supplements is that they are so easy to introduce into your diet. You can easily rip open a sachet and empty it into your oatmeal or morning smoothie. Some beauty powders are suitable for sprinkling on salads and main meals. Powdered supplements are also easy to transport, so leave a few sachets in your car or at the office for those days when you might rush out the door and forget.
Feel Beautiful, Both Inside and Out
Many people are dissatisfied with the way their skin looks and feels, but that does not mean that you must also be one of them. If you feel like you have tried topical skin care product on the market to no avail, maybe take a step back and examine your diet. If you feel as though you might be missing a crucial vitamin or nutrient, consult your doctor for further advice. With the guidance of a medical professional, research some of the existing skin food supplements available on the market. See if you can ascertain what your skin needs. Do you struggle with redness and inflammation, does your skin just seem tired and lacklustre, or is it acne that is refusing to take a hint and leave? Remember, beauty comes from within (literally!).