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First Trimester Of Pregnancy – What To Eat And What To Avoid?

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First Trimester Of Pregnancy- What To Eat And What To Avoid

First of all, congratulations on starting this beautiful journey with your little bundle of joy!

Getting pregnant is a dream for many women and once you have found out that you are pregnant, this emotional roller coaster begins. This 9 month-long journey is filled with so many ups and downs that it becomes an unforgettable experience for life. Some women sail through these 9 months in a breeze while for some it is a physically and emotionally draining journey.

What To Eat And What To Avoid In The First Trimester Of Pregnancy

To help you cope up through the emotional first trimester that is usually marked by nausea, tiredness, and hormonal swings, here is a breakdown on what to eat in the first trimester and what not to eat in the first trimester:

What is Happening to your Body in the First Trimester?

As your little bub begins to develop in your snug womb, the mother’s body goes through some physical changes to accommodate the baby’s growing needs. The muscles of the uterus are slowly stretching to provide more room for the baby and the body is releasing estrogen and progesterone hormones to help the baby grow. This time is very critical for the baby’s development and these 13 weeks will determine the fruitfulness of your pregnancy so you should know what to eat in the first trimester.

What to Eat in the First Trimester?

It is a simple fact that the baby eats what you eat. The hormone surge in the body is responsible for acute nausea and uneasiness that many women go through during pregnancy. Some essential nutrients that must be included in your diet are calcium, iron, folic acid, vitamin B12 and vitamin C. Most of these nutrients are given to expecting mothers in the form of prenatal vitamins but it is very important to include them in the diet as well. Of course, this diet should only be followed after discussing with your doctor as some women are told to avoid certain foods because of their medical conditions.

  • Fruits:

fruits

While pineapple and papaya are best avoided during the whole nine months since they contain compounds that trigger labor, all other fruits are very healthy and should be included in the diet. Fruits like apple, banana, oranges, and pomegranate are great as they are a rich source of fiber and vitamins.

Citrus fruits are a must-have as they provide the body with vitamin C and folic acid that are essential for the baby’s development. You can eat fresh fruits or add them to salads and smoothies to get your fruit quota for the day.

  • Lentils:

lentils

A great source of protein, lentils help in the development of the muscles and tissues in the growing fetus. Most pregnant women experience constipation in the first trimester as the progesterone hormone slows down the digestion process. Lentils help to relieve this condition and help in smooth bowel movements.

Lentils are also rich in Folate and one cup of cooked lentils provides the body with half of its daily Folate requirement. They prevent major birth defects like Spina Bifida and Anencephaly as well if taken regularly.

  • Nuts

nuts

Considered power foods for the body, nuts are good for everybody and especially for pregnant women. They are not only rich in protein but also contain healthy fats for the development of heart and muscles.

Consume nuts in moderation as they are also packed with calories and can lead to an unhealthy weight gain. Soak them up in some water and eat them with milk in the morning to avoid generating heat in the body in the summer months. In winters, you can consume them as it is or adds them to any recipe. Eat a handful of mixed nuts anytime during the day or add them to salads for some crunch.

  • Eggs

eggs

Vital for the development of baby’s brain, eating eggs can help you get over the morning sickness and provide you with all the necessary nutrients. They are rich in vitamin D, calcium, and protein that are the building blocks of a growing human body.

You can have eggs in any form but avoid raw or undercooked eggs to reduce the risk of salmonella infection. We will be talking about all the foods that you need to avoid later in the “Foods to Avoid” section of the article. If you do not eat eggs, you can substitute it with soybean that has a similar nutrient profile.

  • Protein:

protein

This includes the protein content that you get from lean meat, chicken or salmon. Chicken is a rich source of iron and salmon provides the body with vitamin D and calcium. Iron helps in the development of red blood cells that ensure abundant oxygen supply to the baby. Make sure that you eat only completely cooked meats as raw or unpasteurized meats can pose a risk to the mother and the baby.

People who do not eat meat can add a couple of tablespoons of protein powder to their milk to get the same protein content. You can also add tofu or peanut butter to your diet to meet the protein requirements of the body.

  • Green Vegetables:

green vegetables

Vegetables like spinach, broccoli, asparagus, and other collard greens are packed in iron and folic acid that help in brain development and formation of red blood cells. Spinach is also a rich source of vitamin A, vitamin K, and manganese. You can add shredded spinach and other greens to soups, salads, or make wholesome sandwiches with them to get your daily share of green vegetables.

Washing the vegetables extensively before using them in cooking is recommended as many of these vegetables come directly from farms to our tables and change hands many times so they can be covered with mud or dirt.

  • Milk & Yogurt:

milk and yogurt

A rich source of calcium, dairy products like milk and yogurt should definitely be included in the first-trimester diet. Drink 2 glasses of milk a day with protein powder after consultation with your doctor to kick-start your metabolism in the morning and to get a restful sleep at night.

You can include yogurt as a mid-morning snack or freeze it to get your dessert fix after dinner. Top it with some fresh fruits to kill two birds with one stone as you get your quota of fruits and yogurt in one go. It can also be used to make delicious smoothies.

So this was our list of the most important foods that must be included in your diet in the first trimester of pregnancy. These foods are very good for the developing body of the baby and help prevent nerves and brain defects in babies. They also help in developing the muscles and tissues and keep the mother’s body ready for the changes that the second and third trimesters bring. Next, we are going to talk about the foods that should be avoided at all costs and what not to eat in the first trimester when you are pregnant. We will also be discussing some diet-related tips in the last part of the article that proves to be quite useful for pregnant women in the first trimester.

What Not to Eat in the First Trimester?

Here are some foods that should be avoided if you are wondering what not to eat in the first trimester:

  • Raw Milk and Cheeses:

raw milk and cheese

Soft cheeses and unpasteurized milk should be avoided during pregnancy as these can contain bacteria that can harm the baby. If you want to eat cheese, go for hard cheeses and cheese made from pasteurized milk only as there are fewer chances of bacteria growing in this type of cheese.

  • Unwashed Fruits and Vegetables:

unwashed vegetables

As stated earlier, unwashed fruits and vegetables are a strict no-no in the first trimester of pregnancy and generally as well. Do not pre-cut fruits and vegetables or pre-packaged salads as well as you never know if they have been washed properly or not. Wash the fruits and vegetables thoroughly before using them in cooking or eating them raw.

  • Papaya, Pineapple, and Grapes:

papaya pineapple

Papayas contain latex that is known to trigger a miscarriage or cause early labour contractions. Avoid raw papaya and you can eat ripe papayas in moderation only after consultation with a dietician. Grapes, especially black ones, should be avoided because they contain resveratrol, which can be toxic for the mother and the baby. Grapes are also sprayed with many chemicals and should best be avoided.

Pineapple, on the other hand, should not be eaten in the first trimester as they contain bromelain that causes softening of the cervix muscles. Many women use pineapple juice and pineapple in the last trimester of pregnancy to induce natural labour.

  • Mercury-laden Fish:

 

sashimi-mackerel

Avoid eating Mackerel, swordfish, raw sushi, and shellfish and other mercury-laden fishes during the first trimester. Raw sushi and shellfish can contain harmful bacteria that can cause food poisoning. Salmon is the safest fish to eat during pregnancy and other species should be kept away from the diet until after delivery.

  • Undercooked Eggs and Meat:

Undercooked eggs and meat

Do not eat rare meat cuts or undercooked and raw eggs during pregnancy as this increases the risk of salmonella infections and can cause toxic side effects for the mother and the baby. Properly and hygienically cooked eggs and meats should be preferred for this reason.

  • Alcohol and Caffeine:

Alcohol and caffeine

Any amount of alcohol, however small that may be, can harm your baby in the long run and can pose problems during breastfeeding also. It should be avoided throughout pregnancy.

Caffeine, in small amounts, is permissible but large amounts of caffeine can trigger a miscarriage in the first trimester of pregnancy. The safe limit generally practiced for caffeine is around 200 mg/day, which means you do not have to cut caffeine completely out of your life but have to take care of the caffeine content in chocolates, coffees, and energy drinks.

  • Excessive Sugar and Calorie-laden Snacks:

sugar accessed

A significant number of women experience gestational diabetes during their pregnancy and are asked to avoid sugary snacks and frequent desserts as this can spike their sugar levels to dangerous limits. It is better to eat sweets in moderation and avoid frequent binges.

Unhealthy snacks and fast foods are responsible for uncontrolled weight gain during pregnancy and this can lead to an overweight baby if you are not careful with these snacks. Overweight babies are harder to deliver and can suffer from obesity in the later stages of life.

Here are some general tips and tricks that will help you sail through this tough trimester easily without any hiccups:

  • Eat small portions of food rather than three large meals. This can make it easy for the body to digest the food as the digestion process slows down in pregnancy.
  • Include lots of fluids in your diet. Drink at least 3 liters of water a day and supplement it with other juices and drinks to keep your body hydrated when it is working in overdrive to develop another human. This also prevents constipation and keeps the skin moisturized.
  • Do not order in very frequently as you lose control of the portions and quality of ingredients when you order food. It can also cause food poisoning or abdominal discomfort if the food is not cooked hygienically.
  • If fruits and vegetables do not appeal to you because of morning sickness and nausea, go for frozen fruits and smoothies that contain the same amount of nutrients but are easier to consume.
  • Talk to your dietician about any allergies you have or might have so that they can suggest the best alternatives for you to include in your diet.
  • Avoid foods that contain high amounts of vitamin A as too much of this vitamin can harm the baby.

The first trimester is a very crucial period for the mother the baby as a major development of the baby happens in these 13 weeks. The chances of miscarriage and birth defects are high in this trimester so it is advised to eat right and be active in this period. Some women experience extreme tiredness during the first trimester but keeping your body hydrated and nourished will help you pass this trimester very easily and get you closer to meeting your little angel. This handy guide on what to eat in the first trimester and what not to eat in the first trimester will you pass this crucial time easily.

Are you an expectant mother or have given birth recently? How was your first-trimester experience and which tips would you like to share with other mothers to be?

PCOD: The Urban Disease That Is Wreaking Young Women

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PCOD The Urban Disease That Is Wreaking Young Women

If you have interacted with a woman in her late 20s or early 30s recently, you might have heard the term PCOD come up in the conversation. While the term may sound complicated, PCOD is a common hormonal disorder affecting more than 1 million women in India every year.

PCOD: The Urban Disease That Is Wreaking Young Women

What is PCOD, what are its symptoms, and how can it be treated by making simple changes in your lifestyle is what we will be covering in this article along with other FAQs related to this disorder.

PCOD The Urban Disease That Is Wreaking Young Women

What is PCOD?

Simply put, PCOD is a hormonal disorder or condition in females where their ovaries contain small cysts that can hamper the usual function and work of the female reproductive system and the hormones produced in the female body. The full form of PCOD is Polycystic Ovarian Disorder. It is also referred to as PCOS, which means Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome ad these two terms can be used interchangeably. It is not a disease and does not cause any discomfort or disturbance in the normal day-to-day life of women.  In fact, half the cases of PCOD are not even detected or diagnosed.

PCOD is a syndrome that comes with multiple symptoms. The most common symptom is irregular periods. Other symptoms include high production of male hormones in the body, hair growth, weight gain, and enlarged ovaries with multiple cysts.

How are These PCOD cysts formed?

poli systic ovary syndrome

 

In a normal female body, reproductive hormones like FSH (Follicle Stimulating Hormone) and LH (Luteinizing Hormone) help in production of follicle and release of an egg during each menstrual cycle. In PCOD, these hormones do not work effectively and this results in many small and underdeveloped follicles or sacs inside the ovaries filled with an immature egg. These small sacs turn into multiple cysts lining the ovaries.

What are the Causes of PCOD?

While the exact cause of this disorder is not clear, it is said to be caused due to lifestyle and genetic factors. It is caused by multiple genes so one single gene cannot be identified as the main cause. Women diagnosed with PCOD tend to have an unhealthy weight and higher production of male hormones in the body. Leading an active lifestyle with a proper diet is said to have a positive impact on the body and suppresses the symptoms significantly.

Why is this Happening to me?

Unfortunately, this question has no answers but PCOD mainly affects women in their reproductive age and childbearing years. This age group can start from 15 years and can go up to 40 years. Leading an unhealthy lifestyle with no diet control can flare up the symptoms even more and can cause many reproductive issues and hinders the chances of getting pregnant naturally.

PCOD

What tests are Done to Diagnose PCOD?

PCOD is generally diagnosed by doing a pelvic exam and then an ultrasound is done to check the number of cysts in the ovaries and uterine wall thickness. A trans-vaginal ultrasound is also done in some cases where the abdominal ultrasound does not give correct results. A few common blood tests can be recommended for checking the glucose and hormone levels.

Can PCOD be Treated?

PCOD is not completely treatable but its effect on the body can be kept under control with simple changes in lifestyle and diet along with hormone supplements. Here are some common medical treatments offered to keep PCOD under control:

  • Birth Control Tablets:

This helps in regularizing the menstrual cycles in women and regulates the ovulation process. These tablets contain female hormones estrogen and progesterone that help in treating the hormonal imbalance in the body. Regular intake of these tablets will also protect the body against other symptoms of PCOD like excessive hair growth and headaches.

  • Hormonal Supplements:

These supplements help PCOD-affected women to get pregnant without going for advanced infertility treatments that can take a toll on the body physically and mentally. Drugs like Metformin and Clomid are commonly administered in PCOD but should be taken after consulting with a doctor only. Clomid is said to increase the chances of getting pregnant with twins or multiples so discuss this with your doctor before selecting a medicine.

  • Gonadotrophins:

These are injected into the body through injections to help the follicle to grow and release the egg. They stimulate the natural ovulation process with hormones that are not produced by the body naturally in PCOD.

  • Surgery:

Advanced cases of PCOD can take the help of surgery if all the other treatments fail to bring a visible change. The surgery is referred to as “Ovarian Drilling” and involves making small holes in the ovaries using laser or needle to help regularize the ovulation process. The drilling triggers the hormone production process in the body and helps to achieve normal timely ovulation but the usefulness of this procedure is something that is debatable.

birth control pills

So Why is this a Huge Issue if it is Just a Hormonal Disorder?

Now, this is something that really needs to be understood as to why this is a big deal if it does not hamper our daily lives and is not even detected in most cases. What most women do not understand is that the main concern with PCOD is infertility. Since this condition affects your regular menstrual cycle and makes it difficult for the ovaries to release a mature egg for the sperm, it is hard to conceive naturally with PCOD but it is not impossible. Many women struggle very hard to conceive even with medicines if they do not control their PCOD symptoms beforehand.

Women diagnosed with PCOD not only find it difficult to get pregnant but are also at a greater risk of a miscarriage and premature delivery. They can also be diagnosed with preeclampsia which is a medical condition arising during pregnancy and involves risk to both mother and child.

In women with a normal reproductive system, the ovary releases an egg in the middle of the menstrual cycle and the uterus prepares to receive the egg by developing an endometrial lining. This lining is made up of blood vessels that are shed in case pregnancy doesn’t occur and come out of the body as periods. In women with PCOD, the release of the egg and the thickness of the uterine wall do not occur in tandem and this is the reason why pregnancy does not occur easily.

For example, on day 14 of the menstrual cycle, the body should have a mature follicle of around 20 mm in size that is ready to release a mature egg into the uterus. The endometrial lining, on the other hand, should be thick enough to receive the embryo in case the woman conceives in that cycle. These two events do not match in case of PCOD and that is the reason why most women find it difficult to get pregnant naturally if they have PCOD.

Even in women who do not want to get pregnant or have not given it much thought, this disorder can take a toll on the body and show symptoms like unhealthy weight gain, excessive hair growth, high blood pressure, and higher risks of endometrial cancer. They are also at a higher risk of developing type 2 diabetes in the later stages of life.

PCOD remedies

What Happens if PCOD is Left Untreated?

If left untreated, PCOD can lead to many other serious complications like insulin resistance (Type-II diabetes), extreme weight gain, high blood pressure, excessive hair growth, hormonal imbalance, and in serious cases it can lead to endometrial cancer and ovarian cancer also if you do not get your periods for extended periods of time. The infertility issues, of course, are bad enough to deal with and can worsen with time if left undiagnosed.

Can I do Something to Control PCOD?

Yes, definitely. With proper diet and lifestyle changes, you can keep the symptoms of PCOD under control easily and achieve a natural reproductive cycle. The first and foremost thing to understand is that remaining physically fit and active will help you tremendously in fighting the symptoms of PCOD.

Most women diagnosed with PCOD struggle with obesity and unhealthy weight so it should be your first priority to lose some weight if you fall in the unhealthy range. Even the smallest of weight loss can help your body in getting a normal menstrual cycle. Research says that doing 20-30 minutes of regular exercise three times a week is enough to get your weight in check if combined with the right diet.

In terms of diet, a low-carbohydrate diet is generally advised as it helps to regulate the insulin levels in the body and aids in weight loss. Take more nutrients from natural sources like fruits, vegetables, and whole grains and cut down on fast foods, sugar-rich foods, and unhealthy snacking to achieve your goal weight.

It is always better to consult a dietician who can help you design a diet that is beneficial for PCOD. Combining the right diet with moderate form of exercise has been proven to show visible results when it comes to controlling symptoms of PCOD.

Stress is another important factor that has been linked to PCOD and subjecting your body to a lot of stress on a daily basis can worsen this condition.

Common FAQs about PCOD

Some Common FAQs Related to PCOD:

  1. Is PCOD a lifelong disease?
  2. PCOD is not a disease but a condition that generally lasts for life even if controlled with diet and exercise. It does not go away completely even after surgery or regular medicine intake. However, keeping PCOD in control with a good lifestyle can suppress the symptoms significantly and can help you lead a long and healthy life.
  3. What are the first signs of PCOD?
  4. Irregular or missed periods are usually the first sign of PCOD. Uncontrolled weight gain and difficulty in getting pregnant are some of the other signs of this disorder. Hair growth on the face and the body and hair thinning are also seen in some affected women. If you are experiencing irregular periods or fewer than 8 periods in a year, consult a reproductive endocrinologist who will guide you further on how to control it.
  5. Can I get pregnant with PCOD naturally?
  6. Yes, but it is difficult to get pregnant naturally with PCOD as compared to normal women. With PCOD, the egg is not released at all or released later so it does not coincide with the thickness of the uterine wall that is prepared to receive the fertilized ovum. This can make it difficult for women to track their ovulation and get pregnant naturally.
  7. Can you have PCOD with regular periods?
  8. It is unlikely that you can have very regular periods with PCOD as the hormonal imbalance disrupts the normal menstrual cycle and this leads to fewer periods a year. In fact, some women who have PCOD do not have cysts on their ovaries while some women who have multiple cysts are not diagnosed with PCOD so you can have PCOD even with regular periods.

So this was a detailed guide on what PCOD is and what are its effects on the young women population. PCOD is becoming more and more common these days due to bad lifestyle and stress but it is very important to get it diagnosed early to take appropriate steps in the right direction. Leaving PCOD untreated for long has some major ill effects on the body so an active and healthy lifestyle should be followed to keep the symptoms under control. Please keep this in mind that PCOD is not a disease but a condition that can affect a woman’s fertility and physical appearance in the long run. These issues can definitely be treated or at least controlled to an extent if handled by a good doctor who has experience in handling PCOD-related issues.

Do you have PCOD or know somebody who does? Share this article with them to make them understand what PCOD is all about!

20 Foods To Eat For A Glowing And Healthy Skin – Effective Beauty Hacks!

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20 Foods To Eat For A Glowing And Healthy Skin

Are you looking for foods to eat for glowing and healthy skin? When it comes to our skin, we splurge on many expensive skin care products to take care of it but what we forget is that our diet plays a huge role in how our skin looks and feels. If you use luxurious skincare products religiously every day and night but indulge in an unhealthy diet, it shows on your skin.

Foods To Eat For A Glowing And Healthy Skin

If you are confused about what to include in your diet for healthy skin, here are 20 tried and tested foods that help your skin look youthful and glowing if taken regularly:

20 Foods To Eat For A Glowing And Healthy Skin

20 Effective Foods For A Glowing Skin

1.Papaya:

Papaya fruit isolated

Rich in vitamin C and enzymes, Papaya is a tropical fruit that reduces skin inflammation and cures blemishes. It contains papain and chymopapain enzymes that are very useful in treating dark spots and uneven skin. These enzymes also clean the pores and improve the overall complexion of the skin. Papaya can be applied topically also through face packs or included in the diet for all its benefits.

2.Cucumber:

cucumber

The most important nutrient for healthy skin is water. Hydrated skin is happy skin and cucumbers can be your skin’s best friends as they are rich in water content and antioxidants. Eating cucumbers regularly have many anti-aging benefits and keep wrinkles and fine lines at bay. They are also rich in vitamin K and have a cooling effect on the skin. They can be used for removing tan and dark spots from the skin.

3.Avocado:

avocado

Considered as one of the super foods to eat for glowing and healthy skin, avocado is full of healthy fats and protects the skin from signs of premature aging and dullness. The fruit is rich in vitamin A, vitamin C, and folate. It also prevents sun damage and keeps the skin moisturized with its high-fat content. You can mash an avocado and add it to your smoothies or can directly apply it to your skin for a natural face mask.

4.Spinach:

spinach

The king of green leafy vegetables is a favourite among skincare enthusiasts too. Eating a cup of spinach every day can protect the skin from free radical damage and repair the skin cells. High in beta-carotene, spinach also reduces the chances of skin cancer and aids blood circulation in the skin. Add a handful of spinach leaves to your morning omelet or whip up a spinach and apple smoothie to get your daily quota of this green wonder.

5.Walnuts:

Walnuts

Rich in omega-3 fatty acid ALA, walnuts not only provide a moisture barrier to the skin but also prevent skin inflammation. These essential fatty acids are very beneficial for the skin as they cannot be produced by the body. Walnuts also contain zinc which is needed for healing of any skin wounds. They are a bit high in calories so consume them in moderation but definitely include them in one among these 20 foods in your diet for healthy and glowing skin.

6.Watermelon:

fresh watermelon

With more than 92% water, watermelons are rich in vitamin C, vitamin A, vitamin B6, and lycopene apart from water and dietary fiber. Eating this wonder fruit regularly helps to detoxify the skin and reduce blemishes. The fact that watermelon contains no fat and cholesterol is an added advantage. It is also very beneficial for oily skin as it reduces acne breakouts and excess oil production if consumed regularly.

7.Tomatoes:

Tomatoes

Your humble tomato salad is packed with vitamin C and lycopene which prevent sun damage and fight signs of aging efficiently. You can have tomatoes in raw or cooked form and they improve the overall texture of the skin in any form. Lycopene also boosts the production of collagen in the skin and makes it look youthful and radiant. A unique fact about tomatoes is that the more they are cooked, the more their lycopene content is so eating all that pasta sauce you want.

8.Chia Seeds:

Chia seed

Great for both skin and health, chia seeds are a great source of protein and are rich in omega-3 fatty acids as well. They prevent signs of premature aging and reduce blemishes if taken regularly. These seeds also contain zinc and calcium that are very beneficial for the skin. You can add them to your diet by sprinkling them on your salad or making a chia pudding to enjoy a guilt-free dessert.

9.Banana:

banana

Known to aid in the healing of the skin, bananas are a powerhouse of nutrients and help in fading acne scars and hydrating the skin. Banana also contains potassium, calcium, and vitamin A and C. There are so many ways to include bananas in your diet and you can even apply mashed banana directly on the skin to get rid of blemishes and acne scars. Banana peel is also quite useful if applied directly on the skin as it removes scars and dark spots with regular use.

10.Green tea:

green tea

While most people drink green tea to aid in weight loss, it is full of antioxidants called catechins that prevent sun damage and reduce inflammation of the skin. These catechins also help in repairing the damaged DNA and have been proven to prevent skin cancer. Do not overdo on green tea as it also contains caffeine that can dry out the skin and make it look dull. You can add lemon to your green tea to amp up its benefits even further for the skin. Used green tea bags can be used to remove puffiness under the eyes also.

11.Eggs:

Eggs

Rich in biotin, that is known to be beneficial for hair, nails, and skin, eggs are also a rich source of protein and help in the cell renewal process. They also contain albumin that helps tighten the large pores and control excess oil production. Regular consumption of eggs also helps to firm up the skin and reduce sagginess. There are so many ways to include eggs in your diet but make sure that you eat the whole egg as the yolk is also rich in many nutrients.

12.Strawberries:

Strawberries

A natural source of salicylic acid and vitamin C, strawberries are loved by all and should be included in the diet if you want clear and radiant skin. They are all the more beneficial if you have oily skin that is prone to breakouts. Salicylic acid is an alpha-hydroxy acid that deep cleans the pores and reduces acne breakouts. These berries also improve the collagen production in the skin that delays signs of aging and reduces dullness. You can also add blueberries in your diet as they are also great for the skin.

13.Oats:

Oat

An ingredient used in many skincare products designed to soothe the skin, oats are a great source of silicon which improves the elasticity of the skin. They are rich in soothing nutrients that reduce skin inflammation and firm up the skin. Using oats in face packs or including them in your diet provides relief from symptoms of eczema and rosacea as well. In fact, an oatmeal bath is very commonly used to get rid of any itching on the body.

14.Salmon:

Salmon

A fatty fish like salmon is another great source of omega-3 fatty acids that are essential for maintaining the health of the skin. Regular intake of fatty fishes reduces dryness and itching of the skin and provides instant relief from inflammation as well. Salmon is also rich in zinc, vitamin E, and protein. All of these nutrients protect the skin from free radical damage and increase the elasticity of the skin.

15.Coconut oil:

Coconut oil

As they say, coconut oil is the new super food! This oil contains medium-chain fatty acids that reduce skin inflammation and kills harmful bacteria that cause many skin problems. Coconut oil is one of the very few sources of lauric acid that is an antimicrobial fat also found in breast milk. This acid kills the bacteria and virus that damage the skin and reduces the chances of yeast infections. Applying coconut oil directly on dry skin or taking in a diet can boost the moisture levels of the skin and reduce itchiness and dark spots.

16.Pomegranate:

pomegranate

Proven to reverse signs of sun damage and environmental pollutants, pomegranate seeds are rich in antioxidants and vitamins that reduce pigmentation and prevent dullness. These vibrant seeds also contain vitamin C and vitamin K that are essential for improving the overall skin texture. You can either eat the seeds raw or add them to any fruit-based dish for some added colour and texture. In fact, pomegranate peel can also be used in DIY face masks for getting all the benefits. You can dry the peel under the sun for some days before grinding it to a powder and then add it to any DIY skincare recipe you like.

17.Lemon:

lemon

One of the most common ingredients used in kitchens all over the world, lemon not only adds a great flavour to your dishes but can be your skin’s best friend also. They are known for their natural bleaching action and can lighten and brighten the skin in just a few uses. It also works really well on dark circles and lightens pigmentation and acne scars significantly if included in the diet or applied topically. Other citrus fruits can also be taken in place of lemon as they provide similar benefits.

18.Dark Chocolate:

dark chocolate

Who needs a reason to enjoy some decadent dark chocolate but if you knew that this chocolate also helps you get glowing skin, that would make it way sweeter! Dark chocolate is rich in antioxidants and provides great sun protection. The flavanols present in the chocolate also protect the skin from oxidative stress that can cause premature aging and dullness in the skin. This being said, go easy on it as it contains a lot of caffeine and can cause dryness if eaten in excess.

19.Red & Yellow Bell Peppers:

bell peppers

Loaded with vitamin C and beta-carotene, these colourful veggies not only add a lot of colour to your food but are very beneficial for the skin too. They help to improve the blood circulation in the skin and help to keep signs of aging under control. You can sauté these bell peppers and add them to any dish to get your daily dose of vitamin C easily.

20.Kale:

kale

This in-demand superfood is popular for all the right reasons. Particularly good for acne-prone skin, kale is rich in beta-carotene, copper, and vitamin C. Copper helps in reversing sun damage and vitamin C helps in boosting the collagen production to make the skin look more taut and youthful. It works really well in salads and smoothies and is a great substitute for other leafy greens.

Now that you know all about the 20 foods to eat for your healthy and glowing skin, it is also very important to avoid certain foods that do not work well for the skin and the body. Please keep in mind that it is very important to determine your skin type and alter your diet accordingly as not all foods are suitable for all skin types. Now if we talk about foods that you should avoid, the usual staples include white bread, processed meats, alcohol, soda, and other carbonated drinks, canned and foods loaded with sugar.

These foods create havoc on the skin if taken in excess and can cause skin inflammation and breakouts. People with sensitive skin should also avoid excess caffeine in their drinks to keep their skin clear. While usage of good skincare products also plays an important role in how your skin looks, your diet is a huge factor and what you eat actually shows on your skin.

Another important tip to keep in mind is to drink a lot of water. Sounds simple and easy right? Apparently, it is not. Most people tend to ignore this simple yet very important step and their skin looks very dry and dull. Drinking at least 8 glasses of water a day can help you keep your skin clean and prevent breakouts easily.

Have you tried these 20 Foods To Eat For A Glowing And Healthy Skin? Which is your favourite food for keeping your skin clear?