Eating Your Way to Better Skin

You can eat your way to better skin. Studies show certain foods contain specific compounds and nutrients to improve your skin, Dr. Bruce Hensel reported.

Going to the grocery store isn't just about getting food for Cheri Short.

"We try to stay healthy; we shop for our groceries everyday," Short said.

This former make-up artist is shopping for skin foods.

"You know you really can't compensate with face creams if you have a bad diet," Cheri said.

Nutritionist Patti Milligan says Short has the right idea. The quickest way to better skin is to change your diet,

"When you're really eating foods, you are eating for your skin. Because you turn your skin over every two weeks," Milligan said.

Those skin cells need nutrients. So Milligan suggests foods that contain omega 3's -- like nuts, avocado and fish.

"Most studies show that if you have a good one to two servings of good, healthy oils every day that you'll have good skin," Milligan said.

Another good choice: sweet potatoes.

"When you look at the skin cell, it's very rich in beta carotene and vitamin A. So by eating foods that contain those you are guaranteed that you're going to produce a very good, healthy skin cell," Milligan said.

Got dark circles? Dull skin? Milligan says they can be signs of poor digestion.

"One of the easiest things to do is incorporate yogurt, which has friendly bacteria," Milligan said.

Also in Milligan's grocery cart: mushrooms, which contain collagen-building zinc; tomatoes to protect your skin from the sun; and, green leafy vegetables that sweep out toxins.

And then there's dark chocolate.

"It's high in some of those particular minerals like magnesium that just allow good blood flow to the skin," Milligan said.

"A couple of other tips: smoking is bad for your skin. Hydration -- lots of fluids -- is very good. So make sure to drink plenty of water. And one more piece of advice: try to avoid sugary and fried foods because they'll wreak havoc on your skin," Hensel said.

For more information on skin care, visit the American Academy of Dermatology.

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