You read it right! Your diet is prematurely aging your skin. It should come as no surprise that what we put in our bodies, shows up outside our bodies. This could be in the form of excess fat, acne, cellulite or wrinkles. You literally are what you eat.
Here’s a list of the foods in your diet that are causing you to age quicker than ever.
1. Refined carbs and sugar
Can we just decide to cut these foods out of our diets forever? These foods are the devil and will cause you a million and one issues that you likely aren’t even aware of, ranging from insulin resistance, acne, belly fat, metabolic syndrome, and more.
The issue with refined sugar is that it is highly inflammatory. When you consume lots of inflammatory foods like sugar, it causes broken capillaries, loss of skin elasticity, and the breakdown of cells – all resulting in wrinkles and accelerated aging. When we consume sugar, it binds to proteins like elastin and collagen, key proteins for skin health. When glycation happens, toxic byproducts are created that impair the production and function of elastin and collagen causing wrinkles.
Alcohol is a serious no-go if you want wrinkle free, youthful skin. When you consume alcohol, the body has to metabolize it using liver enzymes. During this reaction, the body releases a toxic byproduct known as acetaldehyde. This byproduct causes an inflammatory response and dehydrates the tissues and skin – it’s why we always wake up so thirsty after a night of drinking! Dehydrated skin equals deep lines and wrinkles. So if you don’t want to give up your evening wine, just make sure you’re drinking at least 2 glasses of water with each drink.
3. Processed meat
Processed meat may seem like a good idea when you’re comparing it to the more expensive organic alternative – but seriously, if you can afford it, take the hit and go organic or just leave it out of your diet. Processed meats are filled with preservatives, chemicals, pesticides, salt, sulfite, and saturated fat – the combination from hell for our skin. These ingredients and chemicals dehydrate the skin and impair collagen production by causing high levels of inflammation throughout the body.
What should you include in your diet for healthy skin?
1. Organic, grass-fed meat and fish
For healthy, youthful, wrinkle-free skin we need protein. Why? Because protein is made up of amino acids, which are essential for skin health. Collagen, a protein responsible for skin elasticity and plumpness needs to be circulating for the skin to be able to repair itself and stay looking young.
2. Vegetables and fruit
Antioxidants are found in vegetables and fruit in the form of vitamins A, C, and E. Antioxidants are compounds that fight free radical damage, oxidative stress, and inflammation, things that all-cause skin damage and premature aging.
3. Healthy fats
Your body can not make omega-3 fatty acids and thus must be sourced from the diet. Omega-3 fatty acids are highly anti-inflammatory and thus help protect against infection and disease and inflammatory outbreaks in the skin like wrinkles, acne, and premature aging.