Normal or combination skin can be especially tricky to manage - but reconsidering your diet can in many cases be helpful. Much of the health of our skin is thought to come from the inside, so as much as health care products and more natural cosmetics can help, diet and lifestyle is an important part of achieving that glowing complexion. From dry patches to oily outbreaks with some of my top diet tips, you can help to achieve that constant glow!
Normal/combination skin staples
No matter what skin type you have, from normal to combination to ageing, certain components of your daily diet should always be present and correct. Some of these include the following:
- Plenty of H20 – Regardless of your skin type, I can guarantee you’ll see quite surprising results with some simple H20 treatment. Dehydration is so detrimental to skin, yet so many people are in this state without even realising! Drink at least 1.5l of water daily, and this doesn’t include any other liquids, including tea or coffee! Many people assume they drink lots of water, when in fact, they are drinking lots of caffeine. Caffeine acts as a diuretic which will only contribute to you losing more water in the long run
- Vitamin C – Vitamin C acts as an antioxidant that will help to protect your cells from damage by free radicals – just what we need to be doing when trying to achieve some supple skin! The richest sources of vitamin C include fresh fruit and vegetables, so why not up your intake by including more citrus fruits, bell peppers, pineapples and berries in your daily diet.
- Beta-carotene – Another antioxidant which is thought to help protect your skin is beta-carotene. Beta-carotene is converted into vitamin A in the body and a good intake is even thought to help protect skin from damage by the sun! Beta-carotene is found in abundance in yellow, orange and red vegetables
- Vitamin E – Yet another antioxidant, (can you see a pattern here!), vitamin E is particularly important for supporting the structure of our body’s cells. We know our skin cells are particularly sensitive to damage and of course on show for all to see, so stock up on lots of nuts and seeds which are rich in this important mineral, or alternatively add some wheatgerm oil capsules to your daily diet for a vitamin E boost
- Pre- and probiotics – It’s so true that beauty comes from within, but more specifically, from a healthy gut! We are gradually learning more and more about our gut flora, and how the balance of bacteria here can have an influence over other areas of the body. From weight management to glowing skin, supporting your gut could have a number of positive effects. Try introducing more fermented foods into your diet such as sauerkraut, or why not try a good quality probiotic supplement
Normal/Combination skin food musts
Now, certain skin types may benefit from specific foods, so let’s delve in and explore some of my normal or combination food favourites:
Oily fish – If your skin fluctuates between being normal to slightly dry or oily at times, it’s most likely your skin is leaning towards the dry side. Your skin can end up secreting extra oils in a bid to retain moisture if it’s a little on the dry side, so although you may appear a little greasier than normal, dry skin may actually be at the root of the problem. Topping up on essential fatty acids such as good quality omega-3’s could be the perfect solution. Not only is omega-3 anti-inflammatory but it’s also great for dryness. Start including 2-3 portions of oily fish per week in your diet and include walnuts, flaxseeds and chia seeds as healthy snacks.
Chickpeas– Legumes, nuts and seeds are rich in zinc and we know zinc is super important for skin healing and the regeneration of new skin cells. To help keep a fresh glow about you, include surplus beans and nuts in your daily diet or consider topping up with a low dose supplement.
Normal/combination skin don’ts
As well as some skin food favourites, there are also some foods and drinks best avoided in order to help keep normal or combination skin glowing:
Sugar – For combination skin sugar could be your worst nightmare. Sugar is considered pro-inflammatory which can be problematic for dry, dull skin, but actually, too much sugar could also push skin the other way making skin appear greasy. Sugar influences insulin which in turn can affect other hormones which can have a detrimental effect on your skin. Avoid refined sugar (often lurking in processed goods) and aim to eat fresh instead.
Alcohol – Although technically not a food, alcohol is classed as a macronutrient and many of us overindulge once in a while, which can have a negative impact on our skin. Initially alcohol can cause dehydration which can make skin appear dry and flaky, but in the long-term, your skin will try to over compensate and product excess oil in a bid to regain some moisture. Plus, if the alcohol intake puts sufficient pressure on your digestive system or liver, spots and blemishes can also become part of the problem.
Feed your face too...
As much as diet is important, we want you to feed your skin too! Your skin is super absorbent and will soak up any cosmetics or products that you apply to it. So why not try out PHB’s Brightening Jojoba Bead Exfoliator with Grapefruit & Kukui? This exfoliator is gentle and nourishing for the skin, but also helps to effectively lift any impurities or dead skin.