It might sound like it’s all crap, but diet affects more than just our weight and this has been proven in many studies over many many years.
I’m not saying that diet is the most important thing in life. It certainly isn’t the only thing that affects your health and beauty, but it plays quite a big role. It’s also a good starting point if you’re trying to change your life in a positive way because it’s something you can control completely if you decide to.
Let’s take a look at 11 reasons why eating healthy is important for healthy skin, hair and nails.
1. Eating Real Food PROVIDES THE NUTRIENTS THAT BUILD THE WHOLE BODY
Diet affects your whole body. The main reason for this is: it’s the main source of all the vitamins, minerals and macronutrients we need to maintain life.
The human body can produce almost all the things it needs to be healthy and it’s more powerful than any medicine you’ll find. That’s a fact. And yet there are a few things that the body needs, but can’t produce on its own. And this is your part – you need to fuel your body with real natural healthy food.
You might ask how is this connected to beauty? Well simple, my friend. The skin, hair and nails are all active parts of the body. They’re not just an accessory. These structures constantly renew themselves. For this ongoing renewal we need nutrients, we need enough of them and we need them regularly, not just from time to time.
2. Real food prevents deficiencies
The first places we notice a lack of an essential nutrient are the skin, nails and hair. After all, this is what we see on the outside. While you might be eating a lot, your body might still be starving for essential nutrients if you’re eating too many processed foods.
For example, zinc and iron are two beauty minerals that we often lack if we don’t eat right. Not only is it important that you supply enough of these minerals, but also how you supply them. If you consume too much coffee or sugar with them – you prevent their absorption even if you’re eating enough iron- and zinc-rich foods.
A lack of neither iron nor zinc is pretty or healthy. You might experience poor wound healing, hair loss, brittle nails, skin break outs and cracks or sores in your mouth corners.
And it gets even worse…
3. HEALTHY EATING PREVENTS MULTIPLE DEFICIENCIES
Isn’t that the same as number 2? Well at first sight maybe, but I’m trying to make a point here: Starve your body of one essential nutrient and soon enough you’ll be facing more than just one health problem because most nutrients affect each other.
For example, vitamin C is needed for the conversion of provitamin A to the active vitamin A. This is just one of the many functions of vitamin C, but it means if you don’t get enough vitamin C you might also not be making enough vitamin A. Vitamin C and A are both beauty nutrients. They’re needed for firm youthful skin and are able to prevent wrinkles, dry skin and even acne.
Remember: eating a diversity of whole natural foods is the best way to make sure you’re getting all the nutrients you need for health and beauty.
4. Real food GIVES YOU THAT *EXTRA SOMETHING*
If you feed your body with whole natural foods, you not only provide the essential nutrients you need to survive, you go a little further than that. You give your body that little extra care.
Nobody wants to just exist, right? We want to live, and we want to live the best life we can. How healthy do you want to be? Just a little bit? No, you want to be the healthiest you can be. How good do you want to look? Mediocre? No, you want to look the best you can.
Whole foods are made of more than just the macro and micronutrients we always hear about. They can bring that special spark to your life. This is because additionally to essential nutrients plants contain phytonutrients that are not essential but are beneficial in many ways for the body. Phytochemicals could have for example antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, anti-anythingbad properties.
The phytonutrients prevent diseases, aging and inflammation, bring you energy and give you radiant beauty. So make sure you consume more whole foods and more plants.
5. EATING Real Food REDUCES INFLAMMATION
Many of the beauty problems we face like red spots, psoriasis, eczema, acne, skin aging or even hair loss are related in some way to inflammation. Diet can help you get rid of chronic inflammation because there are foods that can aggravate inflammation, but there are also foods that can alleviate inflammation.
The smartest thing you can do if you have any beauty or health problems is to try eating fewer foods that cause inflammation (processed foods) and to eat more foods that reduce inflammation (whole foods).
6. HEALTHY EATING REDUCES OXIDATIVE STRESS
The main reason we’re aging, not just on the outside, but also on the inside is oxidative stress.
Oxidative stress is caused when there are more free radicals than antioxidants in the body.
We produce free radicals as part of simply living life. The immune cells, for example, produce free radicals to fight off infections regularly. We get problems ONLY when these free radicals become too many and the body can’t effectively deal with them.
The body has its own antioxidant systems that neutralize free radicals. Yet a little help from your diet can never be too much considering the toxic world we live in today. It’s important that we consume more antioxidant foods – mostly plants, so we can neutralize free radicals more efficiently. This way we can protect the skin structures from free radical damage and prevent premature skin aging and hair graying.
Like with inflammation – it’s best to avoid the things that cause free radicals (toxins, stress, processed foods, UV-light…) and to add more antioxidants (from plant foods like veggies, nuts, whole grains) to neutralize the ones that we anyway produce.
But what is a free radical anyway?
I imagine a free radical very much like a hyperactive drunk person that needs attention desperately and is constantly bothering sober people. Unfortunately, sometimes a drunk person hurts the sober person.
That’s pretty much what happens with free radicals – except that they’re molecules, not humans. They’re very unstable because they have an unpaired electron. They desperately need a second one to become stable. So they react with molecules of the body – DNA, proteins, lipids – take one of their electrons and become stable. But by doing so they leave the body molecules with an unpaired electron, turning them into free radicals and destroying their functions. And that’s the big problem behind free radicals – they destroy the function of the body’s own molecules.
7. HEALTHY EATING HELPS BUILD MORE COLLAGEN
Collagen is the most abundant protein in the body and it holds it all together. It’s responsible for the elasticity, youthfulness, and firmness of the skin among other things. Collagen is also important for the health of the hair since it’s the main part of the dermis – the skin layer, where the hair follicles rest.
It’s the one protein in the skin that is most affected by the aging process – we have less and less of it when we start aging. That’s why when we age we have more wrinkles and the skin is less elastic.
Healthy eating can prevent damage and degradation of collagen with the help of antioxidants so that the skin doesn’t look prematurely old.
But not only that. On top, there are nutrients, like vitamin C that help build more collagen and reduce wrinkles.
So by eating healthy, you not only prevent losing collagen but also build more of it, which results in a healthier, younger appearance.
8. HEALTHY EATING CLEARS OUT TOXINS
One major reason for most skin problems and for dull-looking skin is the accumulation of toxins in this part of the body.
Plants contain not only phytochemicals that stimulate detoxifying enzymes in the liver and alkalize the body, but also lots of fiber that cleans the intestines. This way your body can eliminate harmful toxins faster, more easily and more efficiently. This prevents accumulation of toxins in the skin and brings a healthy complexion and a beautiful glow.
9. HEALTHY EATING BOOSTS IMMUNE FUNCTION
Many skin problems are caused by different infections – like for example herpes or acne. This is when you know you need to boost your immune system. There are many ways to do that and eating healthy is just one of them.
See how to improve your immune system:
If you’re not eating right your immune system can’t effectively fight off bacteria, viruses, and fungi that cause health and beauty problems. When you provide your immune system with the nutrients it needs it will be able to fight anything harmful for your beauty or health.
Additionally many plants like garlic, for example, contain molecules that are anti-bacterial, anti-viral and anti-fungal, so they can act directly on those problems.
10. HEALTHY EATING FIXES HORMONAL IMBALANCE
Another major reason for skin and beauty problems could be a hormonal imbalance. Like for example with acne. When you eat too many high glycemic foods the levels of androgens (steroid hormones) in the body rise. Androgens are shown to play a role in sebum production and are involved in the development of acne and in hair health.
Therefore avoiding high glycemic foods (like refined grains and sugar) would be beneficial if you’d like to get rid of acne and to have beautiful hair.
11. HEALTHY EATING AFFECTS ALL PARTS OF LIFE
Last but not least, eating healthy affects other areas of your life – your health, your happiness, your productivity, your self-esteem, your relationships…Start by eating healthy and see everything else change. It’s like a domino.
When you start really taking care of yourself in one part of your life, you’ll start taking care of yourself in others too. You’ll feel less stressed, you’ll sleep better, you’ll be happier, you’ll want to get out more, to exercise more, you’ll have more confidence.
All of these areas affect health and beauty probably as much as diet does. When you put it all together you’ll be the healthiest you can be and you’ll look the best way you can look, just because one day you started eating healthy.
So there you have it. Hope now you’re going to enjoy that healthy quinoa avocado lunch salad even more!