We are keen believers that the path to a radiant complexion is closely linked to the food we consume. You will see few skin health and diet articles on aesthetics clinic websites. We decided that we should buck the trend a bit and highlight what foods and vitamins can do for your skin. This article aims to provide clear, practical information on nourishing your body to achieve healthier, more vibrant skin through dietary choices.


Vitamin A in carrots and spinach aids skin repair by influencing the genes that control epidermal cell growth, promoting replacing old skin cells with new ones. This action helps alleviate dry skin and reduces signs of ageing, including fine lines and wrinkles, by enhancing the skin’s overall texture and appearance.

Vitamin C, abundant in citrus fruits and bell peppers, is crucial in collagen synthesis, a protein vital for skin strength and elasticity. It also counteracts photodamage by neutralising free radicals produced during UV exposure, thereby aiding in sun protection and reducing signs of ageing.

Vitamin E, found in foods like almonds and avocados, is a powerful antioxidant, protecting skin cells from oxidative stress caused by UV rays. Its moisturising properties help maintain the skin’s lipid balance, enhancing its barrier function and preventing moisture loss, leading to healthier and more resilient skin.

Essential Fatty Acids

Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids are critical for maintaining healthy skin. Omega-3 fatty acids, abundant in salmon (providing 2.3 grams per 100 grams) and walnuts, are known for their anti-inflammatory properties and ability to keep skin hydrated. This is due to their role in forming cell membranes and regulating gene expression, impacting skin moisture retention and inflammatory responses.

Omega-6 fatty acids in grapeseed oil are essential for skin growth and new cell production. They contribute to cell membrane structural integrity, crucial for forming healthy skin cells. These fatty acids are also involved in synthesising prostaglandins and leukotrienes, molecules important in inflammation and cellular communication. Ensuring a balanced intake of these essential fatty acids is vital for optimal skin health.

Proteins and Amino Acids

Proteins and amino acids are fundamental for tissue repair and collagen production. Sources like lean meats and legumes are beneficial, with chicken breast being a prime example, containing about 31 grams of protein per 100 grams. These proteins are pivotal for the body’s repair mechanisms, especially for synthesising collagen, a key component for skin integrity and healing. The amino acids in proteins are instrumental in these processes, highlighting the need for protein-rich foods in a diet aimed at maintaining robust skin and tissue health.


Antioxidants like selenium and flavonoids play a key role in skin defence. Selenium, found in high concentrations in Brazil nuts (1917 micrograms per 100 grams), helps shield skin from environmental damage. Flavonoids in dark chocolate and green tea are effective against free radicals, with dark chocolate containing up to 14.6 milligrams per 100 grams. These antioxidants protect skin cells from oxidative stress, leading to healthier and more resilient skin.

Oxidative stress occurs when there’s an imbalance between free radicals and antioxidants in the body. Free radicals are oxygen-containing molecules with an uneven number of electrons, allowing them to react with other molecules easily. This reaction can cause damage to cells, proteins, and DNA. Antioxidants like selenium and flavonoids help neutralise free radicals, reducing oxidative stress and its potential damage to skin cells. This process is essential for maintaining skin health, as it helps prevent cell damage and ageing effects caused by environmental factors.

Water Containing Foods

Adequate hydration is another vital element for maintaining skin health. While not necessarily nutrient-rich, foods like cucumbers and watermelons, known for their high water content, can contribute significantly to skin hydration. These foods help keep the skin moisturised from within, vital for its elasticity and overall health. Ensuring a diet rich in water-rich foods can be a natural and effective way to support skin hydration, complementing external skincare routines.

Copper and Zinc

At the cellular level, zinc and copper play significant roles in skin health. Zinc, particularly abundant in oysters, is crucial for skin healing and oil production regulation. It aids in synthesising new cells and collagen, essential for repairing damaged skin and maintaining its structural integrity. Zinc’s role in sebum production also helps manage skin’s oiliness, preventing acne and other skin conditions.

Copper in shellfish is important for collagen production and skin elasticity. It contributes to the formation of elastin, a protein that, along with collagen, maintains the skin’s firmness and elasticity. Copper also acts as an antioxidant, protecting skin cells from damage caused by free radicals. This mineral’s presence is essential for maintaining healthy skin, ensuring it remains supple and resilient.


Turmeric and ginger are notable for their anti-inflammatory properties that benefit skin health. These spices contain compounds that inhibit inflammatory pathways at a cellular level, reducing inflammation and potentially aiding in skin conditions like acne and psoriasis. Both are believed to promote blood circulation within the body.


Probiotics, found in yoghurt and fermented foods, play a part in maintaining gut health, which is closely linked to skin health. A healthy gut microbiome can influence skin conditions by affecting inflammation and oxidative stress levels in the body.

Healthy fats

Healthy fats, like those found in avocados (15 grams per 100 grams) and nuts, are important for maintaining the skin’s lipid barrier. This barrier is crucial for keeping the skin hydrated and protecting against environmental irritants. These fats contribute to the skin’s structural integrity and moisture retention capabilities.

Limiting Harmful Foods

If you have even the slightest interest in nutrition, you will have heard the buzzword of late – Ultra-processed foods (UPF). No one seems to discuss them in the same sentence as a term used in economics – economic cost. The cost of eating UPF to our health is compounded by the fact for every gram of UPF, you could have eaten a gram of one of the above nutrient rich foods. So, the harm to our health from consuming UPF is just one side of the story.

It’s your Choice

Incorporating these nutrient-rich foods can lead to healthier skin. People know this. Sometimes, it’s good to know what does what. The information in this article was collated from generally accepted scientific knowledge and should not replace personal dietary recommendations a nutritionist or doctor may have given you. We just know about skin and believe in skin health through conscious nutritional choices.