Advising Patients on Food Choices for Healthy Skin

The idea of eating for healthy skin means including key vitamins and minerals into the diet from natural food sources.

Certain nutrients are known to be essential for healthy skin, including Vitamins A, C, and E.

Vitamin A is necessary for gene transcription and immune function, vitamin C is necessary for collagen production and immune function, and vitamin E is a fat-soluble skin antioxidant.

While there are a multitude of supplements available for these nutrients, they are generally more effective when consumed in foods, such as:

  • Two-thirds cup of carrots daily for vitamin A.
  • One raw tomato daily for vitamin C.
  • Half an avocado daily for vitamin E.

For patients who may be on more limited diets, antioxidants can be derived from:

  • One-half cup of dried blueberries, which contains 13,427 antioxidants, including anthocyanidin and quercetin.
  • One raw apple with skin, which contains 8,000 phytochemicals.
  • One slice of watermelon, which provides the daily allowance of lycopene.
  • Half an avocado, which provides the daily allowance of lutein/zeaxanthin, both important water-soluble antioxidants.

Selenium, zinc, and calcium are also important mineral supplements for healthy skin.

More details on foods that promote healthy skin can be found at “How to eat for healthy skin” in our sister publication, Dermatology Times.