Getting older doesn’t have to mean settling for dry, wrinkly, or sagging skin. It also doesn’t have to mean expensive spa treatments or cosmetic surgery. One great way to take care of your skin is by consuming foods that nourish your body from the inside out. Collagen is an important protein component of the inner layer of your skin that helps your skin maintain elasticity. As you age, your body produces less collagen. Adding collagen-rich foods to your diet may give your skin the boost it needs. To maintain healthy skin and a youthful glow, reach for foods that improve your level of collagen and keep your skin strong and supple.
12. Bone Broth
Bone broth is made by simmering bones and connective tissue in water to form a nutritious broth. This broth can be made from beef bones, poultry bones, and even fish bones. When making bone broth, the addition of vinegar to the water may aid in breaking down tissues and freeing marrow from the bones. The collagen contained in bones turns to gelatin when boiled and is readily absorbed and utilized by the body. Epicurious has a recipe for Beef Bone Broth in which beef bones are boiled with a variety of roasted vegetables to create a nutritious, aromatic broth.
Colorful berries like raspberries, blueberries, cranberries, and blackberries are packed with antioxidants. Antioxidants prevent damage to the skin by destroying the free radicals that can break down collagen. Additionally, the vitamin C that berries contain aids in the synthesis of collagen itself. Studies also suggest vitamin C may protect the skin against sun damage, dryness, roughness, sagging, and wrinkling. So feel free to pop these sweet, colorful berries to satisfy your sweet tooth and plump up your skin.
10. Citrus Fruits
Citrus fruits like oranges, lemons, and grapefruit are high in the vitamin C instrumental in protecting and rebuilding skin cells. Vitamin C works alongside the amino acids lysine and proline to help your body manufacture collagen. Additionally, consuming fruits high in vitamin C has been linked to decreased signs of aging. Individuals exposed to the skin-damaging effects of chronic sun exposure or cigarette smoke were able to reverse some of that damage by adding extra fruits and vegetables to their diets.
9. Chia Seeds
These tiny little seeds are packed with protein and omega-3 fatty acids. The fatty acids found in chia seeds protect your skin against sun damage and prevent the appearance of wrinkles by fighting against inflammation. They also improve the lipid content of your skin, forming a protective barrier within the skin that keeps your skin hydrated. Additionally, chia seeds are a source of perfect protein, as they contain all nine of the essential amino acids. These amino acids are important building blocks of body tissues, including collagen.
Your morning omelet is also a good source of the collagen needed for healthy skin. Egg whites and their yolks, often given a bad rap for their cholesterol content, contain collagen. Additionally, the egg is a perfect source of protein with all nine essential amino acids. These amino acids aid in the building of strong, supple skin. In addition to boosting collagen production, eggs also contain the vitamins A and D necessary for skin cell growth and repair. Eggs also contain the iron needed by healthy red blood cells in order to supply oxygen to your skin.Related: 11 Unusual Places Skin Cancer Can Appear
Garlic, onions, leeks, and shallots are all members of the allium family of vegetables and contain sulfur compounds. which aid in the production of collagen. The sulfur compounds are at their most active when these vegetables are consumed raw. Studies show that cooking may inactivate the allyl sulfur compounds. Therefore, you can achieve the most skin-boosting benefit from eating these vegetables raw. Try mixing crushed garlic into your salad dressings. Serve burgers with raw onions rather than grilled ones and enjoy sliced onions on salads and sandwiches.
6. Leafy Greens
Kale, spinach, and collard greens are all leafy green vegetables that are rich in antioxidants. Treat your body and your skin to the benefits of these powerful superfoods. Add spinach or kale to a fruit smoothie as a delicious way to introduce these veggies into your diet. Sprinkle pieces of torn kale with olive oil and garlic and roast in the oven for crispy, delicious kale chips. Cook collard greens with onions, garlic, and bacon for a southern-style serving of antioxidants.
5. Wild-Caught Salmon
Salmon is full of the omega-3 essential fatty acids that decrease inflammation and support healthy skin and tissues. Consuming salmon provides your skin with the healthy lipids that seal in moisture and keep your skin well hydrated. The protein found in this fish provides your cells with the amino acid building blocks necessary for growth and repair of skin cells and collagen. Tuna, mackerel, herring, and trout are also rich in nutrients that nourish and support healthy skin cells.Related: 12 Changes in Your Skin and What They May Mean
Tomatoes are rich in the phytochemical lycopene, which is a powerful antioxidant that protects your skin against sun damage. The juicy tomato is a versatile fruit that can be enjoyed either raw or cooked. Slice up tomatoes to enjoy on a sandwich. Mix up a batch of homemade salsa and reap the benefits of tomatoes, garlic, onions, and cilantro in one tasty dish. Or simmer a pot of rich and hearty spaghetti sauce to treat your skin cells to a healthy dose of lycopene.Related: Bone Broth: What It Is and How You Can Utilize the Nutrients It Contains
3. Red Vegetables
Like the tomatoes, red veggies are rich in the antioxidant lycopene. Red bell peppers, beets, and red cabbage are all abundant sources of the antioxidants important for healthy skin and the prevention of collagen damage. For a delicious recipe using red cabbage, garlic, lemon juice, and other collagen-boosting vegetables, try Detoxinista’s The Best Detox Salad with Lemon-Ginger Dressing.
The avocado is a creamy fruit rich in the healthy fats that plump up your skin cells to give you a healthy glow. They contain vitamin E, which protects your cells from skin damage, decreases inflammation, and prevents the breakdown of collagen. Also, avocado seed oil may prevent the breakdown of collagen, resulting in increased soluble collagen in the skin. Enjoy avocado on a leafy green salad for an extra dose of nutrients that may leave your skin looking supple and healthy.
1. Orange Vegetables
Leafy greens aren’t the only vegetables that can pack a punch in the fight against collagen loss. Bright orange veggies like carrots, sweet potatoes, and pumpkins are rich sources of the vitamins A and E necessary for the restoration of collagen. Pumpkins also contain alpha hydroxy acids, which promote smooth and radiant skin. Additionally, the seeds of pumpkins are high in nutrients of their own. Pumpkin seeds are rich in vitamins A and E as well as vitamin C and zinc.Related: 14 Simple Tips for Reducing Pesky Eye Bags and Dark Circles