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Is the Beauty of Your Skin and The Health of Your Hair Tied Into the Foods You Eat?

Is the Beauty of Your Skin and The Health of Your Hair Tied Into the Foods You Eat?

Is the Beauty of Your Skin and The Health of Your Hair Tied Into the Foods You Eat?

Is the Beauty of Your Skin and The Health of Your Hair Tied Into the Foods You Eat?



The condition of our skin and hair is significantly determined by our dietary habits. Genetics play a part, but encouragingly, we can control our natural hair care and black skin care outcomes by paying attention to what our bodies need.

The good news is that there is a strong dietary overlap between foods that promote beautiful skin and those that promote healthy hair. Our bodies are efficient machines once we fuel them correctly, we generally see positive outcomes from head to toe.

In general, you want to eat a high protein diet with plenty of good carbohydrates (e.g. vegetables and some fruit) and avoid the bad carbohydrates (e.g. bread, white potatoes and sugar). Good skincare and natural hair care habits - from a dietary standpoint - do not differ significantly from any other group, but there are one or two tips that can benefit us in certain key areas of black skin care.

Below is a list of the major players and their skin and hair benefits:

Spinach, Kale and Broccoli, Collard Greens, Bok Choy

All hail the greens!

Skin: The antioxidants in these leafy greens can help to neutralize damaging free radicals in skin cells and prevent loss of skin elasticity triggered by ultraviolet rays.

Hair: Contains Vitamin B and iron, essential for healthy hair.

Eggs

Skin: Eggs are packed with protein. Protein provides excellent nutrition for the skin in the form of amino acids. Amino acids generate new proteins within your skin cells; some of these proteins - such as collagen and elastin - lend strength to your skin tissue, thus reducing the development of wrinkles.

Hair: Eggs are an excellent source of Biotin and other B Vitamins that can help control hair loss. (If you are watching your cholesterol levels, talk to your doctor and consider eating only egg whites.)

Tomatoes

Skin: Full of lycopene which experts claim protects skin against harmful ultraviolet rays. Green and yellow peppers have also been found to decrease sensitivity to sun.

Hair: Vitamins A, B, C and E in tomatoes help to promote strong hair.

Berries: acai, strawberries, blueberries

Skin: Provides the Vitamin C essential for the production of collagen. Not fond of berries, or are they unavailable/ expensive? Opt for cantaloupe, pears, plums, or oranges.

Hair: Acai berries, in particular, contain magnesium, vitamins A, C, E and B, folic acid and zinc all nutrients necessary for healthy hair growth. Zinc helps to keep your roots strong and your scalp healthy, which in turns helps minimize thinning hair.

Oatmeal

Skin: Great for dry skin. (Doctors report that African American patients suffer from dry body skin more than any other group. Also note that dry skin can signal the presence of health issues such as diabetes and kidney disease.) Oats contain compounds that help reduce inflammation to the skin, so they are particularly helpful in fighting acne. Beware the milk factor if eating oats as a hot cereal: milk can inflame acne in some acne sufferers.

Hair: Toss some berries and nuts into your oatmeal and add an extra punch to your hair nutrition.

Walnuts

Skin: Contain copper that boosts collagen production. Enjoy them natural and unsalted.

Hair: Walnuts are an excellent source of potassium, omega-3, omega-6, and omega-9 fatty acids. All these ingredients strengthen the hair follicles.

Sunflower Seeds

Skin: Superb for combating dryness. Rich in fiber, a quarter cup of sunflower seeds provides over 90% of your daily requirement of Vitamin E. Full of selenium and Vitamin C which fight premature skin aging. Soothes dermatitis and eczema. Throw a few seeds into yoghurt (a great skin firmer) or onto wholegrain sandwiches.

Hair: A fantastic source of Vitamin B6 which, along with folate and riboflavin, helps form hemoglobin, needed for transporting oxygen to the scalp. Undisrupted supply of oxygen is crucial for healthy hair.

Salmon, Mackerel and Anchovies

Skin: These fatty fish are high in omega-3 that helps reduce skin inflammation and blocks the release of the collagen-eating enzymes which cause wrinkling and sagging.

Hair: These types of fish are also loaded with vitamin D, protein, and zinc. These nutrients promote hair growth by keeping your scalp healthy. See also oysters for the same hair-building properties.

Dark Chocolate (hurray!)

Skin: Contains high levels of flavonols (a powerful antioxidant), plus zinc, iron, protein, magnesium and even a few B Vitamins. Choose chocolate with at least 70% cacao/cocoa but watch your portion size! Two or three ounces per week (or one small square from a bar, daily) is recommended.

Hair: This kind of chocolate is chock full of iron, zinc and copper - all minerals that support cell renewal. Eating it will boost the supply of blood flow and oxygen to your scalp, resulting in stronger, thicker, healthier hair. And before I go:
  • Be aware of the hugely negative effects that yo-yo dieting and crash dieting can have on your skin and hair. Crash dieting, in particular, forces the body to direct its energy towards the essential activities heart and brain function - rather than the creation of healthy hair/skin.
  • Avoid sugar/sugary drinks and foods they are very bad for skin and hair. Sugar causes an increase in insulin levels which can lead to an increase in androgen (a male hormone) which in turn, leads to thinning hair. However, be wary of sugar substitutes: studies have shown that aspartame and agave, for example, create more health problems than they solve. Agave, in particular, packs more fructose than high fructose corn syrup and causes wrinkles.
So, love your body, give it the best fuel you can afford to give it and see the wonderful results in your skin and hair!

That's it for this week! As always ...

Dedicated To Your Beauty,

Juliette Samuel

Esthetician/Author/Publisher

Nyraju Skin Care


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What's your greatest skin care challenge?

As women and a growing number of men of color, what's your greatest skin care challenge? Whether it's dark spots, uneven skin tone, dark circles,puffiness under your eyes or hair that won't grow, you'll find a product that can possibly become the solution to your challenge.

Moisturizers and ingredients that hydrate your skin will always be your best friend, for your face, body and hair. So look for products with nourishing and nurturing ingredients. Shea butter, cocoa butter, mango butter and jojoba oils are a few of the ingredients to keep on your list.

We've got new additions to our store for you. Essential oils have been known to help calm and soothe skin and scalp irritations. Although you'll find a sample kit on the hair category page, you can use them for any of your skin and hair care needs.

The hair care sample kit has been given an upgrade. We've increased the size of the container on the shampoo and conditioners and added a hair butter sample to the mix.

Although there's beauty in your blackness, your skin is sensitive and needs protection from the sun just like everyone else. So if you know you're challenged by sunburn, add a few drops of Lavender essential oil to Jojoba and Grapeseed Oil and create a nice body oil for yourself. It will bring comfort and beauty back to your skin.

We're listening to you and your suggestions, so keep an eye on the category pages and your emails for updates.

Until next time ...

Dedicated To Your Beauty

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