Antioxidant Vitamins for Healthy Looking Skin

Good skin starts with good nutrition. Choose foods rich in antioxidants for healthy-looking skin.

Good skin starts with good nutrition. Choose foods rich in antioxidants for healthy-looking skin.

Boy, oh boy, do we hear a lot about the benefits of antioxidant vitamins. When it comes to our diet, there are many delicious foods that are packed with antioxidant vitamins, making it easy to find healthy alternatives with little to no effort. So, why not make a conscious decision to select the best ingredients for your body, both inside and out? Of course, I’m talking about the skin. It’s all about good nutrition. The benefits of a healthy diet that’s loaded with antioxidant vitamins can help you look good on the outside and feel good on the inside.

Healthy Skin Starts from Within

We hear a lot about the importance of antioxidant vitamins. And we know enough about them to diligently read labels to ensure that our favorite skincare products contain these skin-friendly vitamins. Why? Because they work. After all, antioxidant vitamins are the enemy of free radicals. Although some antioxidant effect from topical products can be useful, what you eat supports the body’s function. Great skin always starts on the inside, so it’s always most important to start there.

We Love Antioxidants

When we were kids and heard the words “take your vitamins,” we probably all wanted to run. But the good news is that most of the foods that contain antioxidant vitamins are delicious. You can pack your diet with plenty of antioxidant-rich veggies and fruits, including berries, carrots, green spinach and, my favorites, citrus fruits. These vitamin-rich foods help to keep free-radical formation in check. Of course, we also need a multivitamin and daily skincare products that contain vitamins C and E. They are both antioxidants.

Why Vitamin C?

Vitamin C is used in the living structures of the skin. When looking at your product labels, don’t be surprised if you don’t see vitamin C listed. It may be listed as ascorbic acid, tetrahexyldecyl ascorbate, sodium ascorbyl phosphate, as well as other forms.

Why Vitamin E?

Vitamin E is one of the most popular antioxidants around. It too can provide some wonderful benefits to the skin. Again, you may not see vitamin E on your product labels, but if you see tocopherol or tocotrienols, you know your product contains vitamin E.

We Aren’t Fond of Free Radicals

We hear so much about free radicals. But what are they? Free radicals are unstable molecules with a single unpaired electron, which makes them susceptible to oxidation. Seem complicated? All you really need to know is that free radical formation happens in the cells of your body all the time. It’s normal. Exposure to air pollution, tobacco or pesticides can lead to free radical formation, and they are also generated as part of your everyday metabolism. Yes, our own bodies generate free radicals. These are the free radicals that antioxidants in your diet can combat, because they can be used in the living tissues of the skin. The good news is they have enemies in the form of antioxidants, making antioxidant vitamins and antioxidant-rich foods the perfect choice for your body and, of course, your skin.

To address free radicals in the superficial layers of the skin, you should establish a daily skincare regimen that includes products to cleanse, nourish and protect your skin. Select those products containing antioxidant vitamins C and E, as you need all the help you can get to help fend off free-radical damage.

Make an effort to never go outside without wearing your SPF 30. And eat a healthy, well-balanced diet full of antioxidant-rich foods. These simple steps will put you on the path toward healthy skin in no time. And remember, the healthiest skin is always the most beautiful.

Written by Susan Bowerman, M.S., RD, CSSD, CSOWM, FAND – Senior Director, Worldwide Nutrition Education and Training

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