Written by Rochelle Young, RD, LDN of Pretty Healthy

Dealing with acne that no topical treatment has solved? Got thinning hair, but can’t find the right treatment? The solution to your beauty dilemmas could simply be related to your diet. Emerging research suggests that diets high in dairy, or even simple carbohydrates may be linked to various skin conditions such as acne. Did you know certain nutrients from fruits and vegetables may also aid in skin health? It’s time to put down the expensive treatments, and pick up the fork!

Beauty Antagonists

Beauty antagonist are… you guessed it, foods that work against our natural beauty. The first contender is Alcohol. Yes, like an alcoholic drink. Now disclaimer, this isn’t to say you can’t have your occasional social drink,  just in moderation of course. Alcohol affects the liver. In high amounts, it can stress the liver so much that blood flow to the skin is reduced, capillaries are broken and as a result, your skin may appear “flushed” and lack luster.

The second contender is caffeine. While that cup of coffee temporarily perks you up in the morning, caffeine triggers the stress hormone, cortisol. Increased levels of cortisol can contribute to belly fat, wrinkles and inflammation. Caffeine also puts a burden on your adrenal glands, which can make the body more acidic, throwing off your pH. Not to mention, caffeine can keep you stimulated throughout the night, making it harder to get deep, reparative beauty sleep.

Last up is canned foods with Bisphenol A. Many of you see the labels that say “no BPA”. BPA is a chemical in almost all canned foods. It mimics estrogen in your body, which may throw off your hormone balance. Hormone balance is essential for clear, glowing skin..

Foods for beauty

First up is blueberries, let me tell you, you definitely WANT to add these into your beauty routine. Blueberries contain anthocyanin pigments, which aid in boosting skin elasticity. In other words, it can reduce sagging skin and create more room for plump skin. Anthocyanins also protect against UV damage. At times, it’s easy for us to miss a spot with sunblock, but there is nothing like some extra internal protection!

Next is chard! This dark leafy vegetable is packed with biotin, vitamin A and vitamin E. Biotin is commonly known to aid in hair growth. The body uses biotin to produce amino acids (building blocks of protein), which are then converted into keratin. Other green leafy vegetables that contain biotin include broccoli and spinach. Don’t waste another second, increase the greens, and watch your hair flourish!

Last up is cabbage! This vegetable is packed with vitamin C and anthocyanins. Vitamin C is essential for collagen production. Collagen keeps our skin elastic, supple and young. It’s never too early to practice anti-aging methods girl! Other favorite sources of vitamin C include citrus fruits and bell peppers!

So, in a nutshell, we must treat the underlying issues, before we continue with temporary fixes. Build a strong nutrition foundation, and rely on it more than your skin and hair care products. Always remember, we write our beauty story with every bite! Start writing yours today.

For more from Rochelle, check out her Instagram and Facebook page.