As a child, you could eat almost anything without a care in the world. Very few foods rendered any type of side effects, and you never gained weight regardless of what you ate. As you get older, you have to start becoming more conscious of the food you are eating and the impact they have on your body. Most people limit their calorie and fat intake in order to monitor their weight and stay fit and healthy. However, it is your skin that can be severely impacted by the foods you are consuming. Here are a few common foods that can damage your skin.
Alcohol is something that we kind of know is bad for us, but we pretend that we don't because we enjoy it so much. Unfortunately, consuming too much alcohol can dilate your blood vessels. This is what causes dehydration and most hangovers. This dehydration can also cause your skin to dry out, crack, and become red and scaly. This drying out process can be accelerated when you are drinking at the beach or a bbq underneath the hot sun.
Furthermore, if left unchecked, alcohol can inflict severe premature aging damage to your skin. This happens by reducing the amount of Vitamin A in your body. Vitamin A is responsible for the creation of new cells. The bottom line is that excessive alcohol consumption can result in wrinkles, redness, dehydration, and puffiness of your skin.
Improvement Tip: Cut back on the non-social event drinking, such as evening glasses of wine or beer. This will improve the complexion of your skin without you having to give up your social life.
This is a tough one because we all love fried food such as chicken, dumplings, pickles, and a host of other goodies that aren't so great for us. Ideally, you are consuming fried foods in moderation in order to keep your cholesterol and weight down. If that has been a tough task, saving your skin might add extra motivation to drive by KFC the next time you see it.
The most common skin-related side effect produced by fried food is acne breakouts on your face. However, it is the vegetable oils in these foods that do the most damage. This because when they become heated, they cause the cells in your skin to age rapidly. This, in turn, produces dark spots and wrinkles on your skin. In addition to your blemishes, these foods can ruin the complexion of your skin as well.
Improvement Tip: Avoid fried foods whenever possible. This includes cooking them in your home. Choose healthier options over fast food. Only eat fried foods when you have no choice, or if it is a special occasion.
Now this one just seems unfair. How are we supposed to live in a world without milk and cheese? Like it or not, dairy has been designated a pro-inflammatory food. This means overconsumption can increase the likelihood of rashes, itchiness, flaking, and a lot more.
Dairy is packed with hormones that, when introduced to your body, can throw your internal hormone balance entirely out of whack. In simple terms, this imbalance forces your body to start the process that causes acne, including increased oil production. The final result is an increase in blackheads and breakouts.
Improvement Tip: Examine your daily diet and see where you can cut back. For example, maybe you do not need to put that much milk in your coffee. Also, avoid adding cheese to meals whenever possible.
The last and possible biggest culprit on this list is sugar. It seems like sugar is blamed for everything from weight loss to health issues and now skin problems. It would be easy to eliminate it if it wasn't packed into all of our favorite snacks and treats. However, just like your doctor tells you to cut back on the sugar for your health, we are telling you to monitor your intake for the sake of your skin.
Sugar wreaks havoc on the collagen in your body, rendering unable to function correctly. When this happens, your once clear skin begins to lose its firmness. While losing skin firmness happens to all of us, eventually, excessive sugar consumption and rapidly increase the process. If your diet is high in sugar, your skin will begin to age a lot faster than you would like.
Improvement Tip: Read the Nutrition Facts on everything you eat and drink. You will quickly see many of these items contain an excessive amount of sugar. You will be able to cut down your sugar intake without eliminating all of your favorite treats.
In case you thought we were going to let the salty foods off the hook, you were wrong. When salt enters your body, it causes your skin to dehydrate and become irritable and itchy. It also causes your body to retain water. Believe it or not, water retention can lead to puffy eyes and oily skin. Lastly, just like every other item on this list, too much salt kickstarts the aging process and makes your skin look older than you actually are.
Improvement Tip: Avoid adding salt to your foods. Also, limit the number of salty snacks you eat each day. Where possible, swap those snacks out for something with little or no salt in them.
Unfortunately, most of the foods we love the most are not so great for us. That being said, it is not reasonable to expect someone to eliminate everything we have listed here. However, this may be an excellent time to examine your daily diet and see where you can make some tweaks. Determine what snacks and drinks your love and which ones you wouldn't miss if they were done. Most importantly, always examine the nutrition facts and ingredients to understand what you are putting into your body at all times.