We know that our diet has a huge impact on our overall health and ability to avoid chronic pain and illness. What you eat can also impact how your skin ages by damaging the collagen in your tissues. To stay strong and put your best face forward, consider the food swaps listed below.
1. Processed Sugars
Diets that contain a great deal of processed sugar damage the collagen in your skin, changing it from a smooth elastic to saggy. Swap: Cut back on sugar in daily beverages and foods until your taste buds regain sensitivity and enjoy it sparingly. You can also enjoy fruit as a sweet treat instead of sugary desserts.
2. Fried Foods
Fried chicken and crunchy bacon may be delicious, but these will age your skin. Swap: Increase the amount of your meal that’s cooked in water instead of oil, and enjoy raw foods to combat the effect of fried foods on your skin.
3. Saturated Fats
Saturated fats damage the structure of collagen and contribute to wrinkles. Use these sparingly, and swap cooking with butter to cooking with olive oil. Steam and praise whenever possible.
4. Processed Meats
If you choose to eat meat, be aware that heavily salted meats like bacon and pepperoni can dehydrate you and increase your risk of wrinkles. Swap them for poultry to help you maintain healthy collagen production.
Not everyone tolerates dairy, and this can lead to inflammation. For calcium, swap to almonds and leafy greens.
If the idea of giving up coffee is too ludicrous for words, monitor your caffeine intake so it doesn’t impact your path to a good night’s sleep. Swap: green tea to maintain your needed caffeine level, sparkling water instead of soda.
Alcohol causes inflammation and strips the body of nutrients, particularly Vitamin A. To reduce this risk, cut back your drinking during the week or switch from wine to sparkling water as the evening progresses.
8. Rice Cakes
Any foods with a high glycemic index (such as rice cakes or white flour bread and crackers) will spike your glucose, may leave you feeling tired and will cause inflammation. Swap these foods for oats or whole wheat.
9. The Candy Bowl at Work
Many of our co-workers want to treat us with a little candy, but it’s not that great a gift. Instead, pack a small serving of grapes in your lunch bucket or take the time to peel and eat an orange.
If sugar isn’t a challenge for you, you may find that you’re a fiend for popcorn, chips or crackers. Swap these crunchy treats for roasted, unsalted nuts.
11. Artificial Sweeteners
The connection between artificial sweeteners and diabetes is worrisome. Diabetes is terribly hard on all your physical systems, including your skin. Swap diet drinks for sparkling water.
By carefully monitoring what you take in, you can protect your skin from signs of premature aging. This dietary care will also impact how you feel and your ability to stay strong as you age.