Top 7 superfoods for healthy skin and hair

To get clear skin and thick hair, you need to look beyond creams and conditioners. While these topical treatments can help, healthy skin and hair start from within, with the nutrients you consume.

(Making certain foods a part of your diet can improve skin and hair health)

In addition to a healthy balanced diet, there are certain foods that can do wonders for your skin and hair. Keep reading to find out more about these 'super foods.'

1. Bell Peppers

Bell Peppers are packed full of vitamin C, which is essential for healthy hair and skin. A deficiency of Vitamin C can lead to split ends and brittle hair. Vitamin C has several other uses and benefits. For more information on choosing the best vitamin c serum, check out Fix Your Skin.

Bell Peppers also stimulate collagen production, which promotes elasticity and keeps signs of aging at bay.

Another reason to make bell peppers a part of your diet is that they contain phytonutrients which have powerful antioxidants. These antioxidants protect the skin from cell degradation and environmental toxins. Bell peppers also help in preventing and treating inflammation in the body. So snack on bell peppers regularly for nourished skin and hair.

2. Tomatoes

Tomatoes are a great source of lycopene, which is an anti-ageing antioxidant. Lycopene is more easily absorbed by the body when it is cooked, so add some tomatoes to your next stir fry to make the most of their benefits.

Tomatoes are also excellent at treating and clearing up acne. They are rich in vitamin A, vitamin C, and vitamin K, which are commonly found in a lot of acne medications. One cup of tomato juice has around 45 mg of vitamin C or about 74% of the daily recommended value.

Vitamin C protects your skin from free radicals, sun damage and pollutants. Vitamin C also stimulates collagen production. Collagen is the connective tissue that helps with firmness and cell renewal. It is essential for skin elasticity and delays signs of aging.

3. Spinach

This green leafy vegetable is a true multi-tasking food. It is rich in nutrients and antioxidants. Spinach contains lutein, which keeps your eyes sparkling and healthy. It also contains vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin E and beta-carotene which are powerful wrinkle-fighting antioxidants. They work together to protect your skin from the sun’s damaging UV rays.

Vitamin C plays an important role in the regeneration of skin cells, and vitamin A improves skin tone. Additionally, Spinach is an excellent source of calcium, potassium, magnesium, iron and omega-3 fatty acids. The antioxidants and nutrients in spinach make your skin look radiant and even out your complexion. Use Spinach in your salad instead of lettuce or sauté it into your curries and stir-fry recipes.

4. Chia Seeds

Chia Seeds are packed with omega-3s, fiber, and protein. Omega-3s reduce inflammation and are essential for healthy skin and hair. Fiber stabilizes blood sugar stable and prevents surges in your insulin levels. When your insulin levels drop, you start to crave sugar and fat. Consuming an excess of these can cause acne, redness or make your skin look lifeless.

Chia seeds also contain Zinc which is an essential mineral that has anti-aging benefits. Zinc combats inflammation and keeps your skin looking taut and supple. They also absorb up to ten times their weight in water, thereby keeping you fuller for longer. You can add them to juices, smoothies, and puddings for a boost of nutrition.

5. Almonds

Almonds are one of the most nutritious nuts you can eat with many benefits for your health, particularly your skin and heart. They provide vitamins and minerals and eating almonds can even help with weight loss.

Almonds are nutrient powerhouses, packed full of Vitamin E, which is a vital nutrient for healthy skin. Almonds also contain flavonoids which promote heart health.

They protect skin from the damage caused by free radicals and even oxidative damage. Almonds nourish and rejuvenate the skin and help reduce wrinkles and fine lines. Snack on a handful of almonds or some almond butter on toast.

6. Wild Salmon

Wild salmon is an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids, which are essential for supple, moisturized skin. Salmon also contains selenium, which protects the skin from free radical damage and sun exposure.

Additionally, Salmon contains vitamin D, which maintains the health of teeth and bones. Salmon can be added to your diet in a multitude of ways. Have it baked, grilled or add it to salads and pasta.

7. Dark Chocolate

Contrary to popular belief, chocolate does not cause acne. In fact, dieticians recommend consuming a small amount of dark chocolate daily. Chocolate has a high flavanol content and helps to keep skin hydrated. It also protects skin from sun damage. Ideally, opt for dark chocolate that contains at least 60 % of cacao.

Conclusion

Your diet plays a significant role in maintaining and improving your health and appearance. These superfoods will give you gorgeous skin and beautiful hair. So make these a regular part of your diet, and you will soon start seeing results.

Eating vitamin-rich foods on a regular basis can do wonders for your skin. Take a look at the infographic below for more information on vitamins and their benefits.


We live in a world where facts and fiction get blurred
In times of uncertainty you need journalism you can trust. For 14 free days, you can have access to a world of in-depth analyses, investigative journalism, top opinions and a range of features. Journalism strengthens democracy. Invest in the future today. Thereafter you will be billed R75 per month. You can cancel anytime and if you cancel within 14 days you won't be billed. 
Subscribe to News24
Voting Booth
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
Results
Nappies, they cost too much
7% - 128 votes
Formula and food, it's getting so expensive
19% - 375 votes
Creche and school fees are a struggle every month
74% - 1438 votes
Vote
Rand - Dollar
16.24
-0.4%
Rand - Pound
19.87
-0.5%
Rand - Euro
16.93
-0.9%
Rand - Aus dollar
11.23
-0.3%
Rand - Yen
0.13
-0.6%
Gold
1,801.16
-0.6%
Silver
21.13
+0.1%
Palladium
1,959.60
+0.6%
Platinum
940.50
-0.5%
Brent Crude
111.22
+3.4%
Top 40
62,129
+0.2%
All Share
68,816
+0.2%
Resource 10
71,192
+0.6%
Industrial 25
76,844
-0.3%
Financial 15
15,850
+0.7%
All JSE data delayed by at least 15 minutes Iress logo
Editorial feedback and complaints

Contact the public editor with feedback for our journalists, complaints, queries or suggestions about articles on News24.

LEARN MORE