5 skin loving pantry staples to consume daily (plus my favourite natural skin care brand)
I’m opening up another conversation about skin, because what woman doesn’t love a good blog post dedicated to this precious organ ;)
I’m constantly seeing skin complaints in clients so it’s a broad topic I’m forever researching. From general hormonal breakouts to acne and dermatitis, there’s a lot to know about nourishing our skin and majority starts on the inside. It’s something most women pride themselves on looking after, but I assure you, if you prioritise on looking after yourself as a whole, your skin will naturally be better off for it.
There is plenty of research around what’s called the gut-skin axis. This relates to how our gut health influences our skin quality, integrity, healing and elimination of toxins. It’s quite common to see digestion complaints in women wanting to improve their skin health, because they often go hand in hand. When our gut is permeable or ‘leaky’, foreign food particles can slip through the gut wall and trigger an immune response. This can show up differently in different people but a common place this inflammation shows up is on the skin.
Despite how deep the level of intervention is, the foundation comes back to a diet rich in whole foods and making sure every meal contains protein, good fats, some greens (such as herbs or leafy greens) and fibre. The skin needs protein for its structure and fats to give it its ‘plumpness’, hydration and glow - so we obviously need to be eating these!
I’ve compiled some amazing skin loving foods to take what you eat to the next level if you’re trying to improve your skin.
5 Skin Loving Pantry Staples
1. Good ol' Olive Oil
The antioxidant properties in olive oil have been considered serious free radical fighters. What does this mean? Basically, they help to combat skin damage and reduce inflammation. Without antioxidants in our diet (an on our skin), our skin becomes more prone to damage and dullness. Olive oil is also rich in mono-unsaturated fats and squalene which hydrate and protect the skin. Choose organic, cold pressed, extra virgin olive oil if you can - and add it over salads, steamed veg, through dips or anything really!
Fun fact - Quality olive oil can make a great body moisturiser - Cleopatra used it liberally on her skin back in the day. The best time to apply is before bed to avoid sun damage.
2. Hemp seeds
I can’t harp on about omega 3 for our skin enough. A lot of people are deficient in the essential fatty acid because they don’t consume fish regularly. Our body doesn’t make this fat, so we have to get it from our diet. While fish is one of the best places to get our omega 3, an additional boost to have on your pantry shelves are hemp seeds. These are one of the few plant sources containing omega 3, so are particularly important for vegans to consume. Omega 3 plays an important role in the appearance and structure of our skin and is especially important for controlling inflammation in the body. If your skin is dry, especially on the back of your arms and souls of your feet - you may benefit from increasing your omega 3 intake. I add these on top of smashed avo, in smoothies or through salads and dips.
I'm sure you were half expecting this one to pop up... We see collagen marketed everywhere now, but what a lot of people don’t realise about collagen is its abundant use in the body well beyond skin structure. If you take collagen the body will use it where it needs it the most (plus it’s making its own supply all the time). So while it can have a direct benefit for skin structure and reducing fine lines, for many people it will act to tighten our gut wall, improving the skin indirectly. I stir Nutra Organics Collagen through my hot drinks, soups or coconut kefir (see below).
4. Fermented Foods
This one's more of a fridge staple and has been around since ancient times. Because probiotics maintain our intestinal barrier integrity, having a diverse range of probiotics can support the gut-skin axis and reduce inflammation. When our gut wall is strong, we can also assimilate nutrients from our food more efficiently. I get over sauerkraut easily, so I find one of the easiest ways to up my probiotic intake is 1/2 a glass of coconut kefir daily - It's fizzy and delicious.
Walnuts also contain moderate amounts of omega 3, to help lock in moisture and keep your skin plump and glowing. They also contain vitamin E, vitamin C and selenium which all act as antioxidants for the skin to fight free radicals and protect it from damage. Incorporating anti-oxidant rich foods are specifically helpful for inflammatory skin conditions such as psoriasis. The bonus with walnuts is that their superfoods for the brain - so they make a great afternoon pick-me-up snack (whether on their own or blended through bliss balls).
My Favourite Skin Care Product
I’m in no way a skin expert, my skin routine is (very) simple and I’ve used the same skin products for 2 years now. I know if I’m looking after myself on the inside first, and providing my skin with the nutrients it needs to thrive, then my skin products will just be a bonus.
This is not to underestimate the power of good quality, natural products for our skin, so I wanted to introduce you to Botani. They have been around for a while but I only discovered them 2 years ago when I was switching up my products and I haven’t looked back. They are naturapthically formulated, ethically sourced and vegan friendly.
The acai serum is my absolute favourite! The smell is incredible and I have never woken up after a good nights sleep feeling so hydrated, especially around my eyes. My skin has become firmer and more plump because of it. The antioxidants and olive squalene in their products support healing of scars and blemishes - it's seriously direct nourishment for the skin.
If you want to try these for yourself, Botani have given my followers a discount code. Just use becky2018 at the checkout for 10% off. I’m not affiliated with these guys, they’re just genuine great people!
If you want to address any specific skin concerns, you can book a consultation with me here.
Becky Jane x