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Nutrition for Skin: 5 Foods You Should Be Eating

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Updated October 22, 2012

Written or reviewed by a board-certified physician. See About.com's Medical Review Board.

If you're looking for the easiest way to achieve healthy skin, look no further than what's on your fork. Nutrition expert Beth Crenshaw shared her top 5 foods that everyone should be eating if healthy skin is their goal. See if you can incorporate them into your diet and reap the benefits.

Beth Crenshaw is a Certified Holistic Health Counselor and a professional meal planner. She is the founder of Plan It Healthy, a meal-planning website for today’s busy lifestyle. Beth has worked in the health food/fitness industry for the past 15 years. Beth believes in eating real food, living life as simply as possible, moving your body as much as possible, and enjoying each and every day.

1. Avocado

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Warning: you may not view guacamole the same anymore! Considered one of the healthiest foods on the planet, avocados are packed with nutrients including B-complex vitamins, glutathione, Vitamin E, and beta-carotene. Avocados also contain healthy fats, which help keep your skin moisturized and protect it against fine lines and wrinkles. The fats in avocado also aid in the production of collagen, which keeps skin firm and youthful in appearance.

Are you craving avocado yet? Just be cautious of your serving size, as all of these health benefits come in a high-calorie package. In moderation, the avocado is a great addition to your diet for better skin and overall health. Recipe: Easy Guacamole

2. Berries

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Hooray for berries! Besides being delicious, they are definitely nutritious. Berries are an excellent source of Vitamin C. Vitamin C aids our skin in the production of collagen. When collagen breaks down (this happens when we age), our skin starts to sag. Boo! Consuming berries, or other sources of Vitamin C, can help to tighten skin and prevent wrinkles. Yay!

Strawberries, cherries and blueberries are some berries with the highest amounts of vitamin C. These are common berries that can be found year-round in any grocery store. Berries can be bought fresh or frozen, and taste delicious atop cereal, in a smoothie, on green salads, or as an accompaniment to many meat dishes. Recipe: Berry Smoothie

3. Salmon

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I love salmon. I love the way it tastes and I love its health benefits. If you don’t love salmon, guess what? There are other seafood products that have the same health benefits and can make your skin look beautiful too. Seafood contains omega 3-fatty acids that reduce inflammation and dryness in our skin.

Increased inflammation and dryness makes our skin age faster, and we don’t want that. By consuming foods high in Omega 3 fatty acids, we improve our blood circulation, which brings nutrients to our skin, making it smoother and softer and decreasing its redness and dryness. Recipe: Baked Salmon in a Thai Sauce

4. Carrots

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Yes, we have all heard that carrots are great for our eyes, but what about our skin? The same nutrients that allow carrots to improve our eyesight (yes, that is true), are the same nutrients that help it improve our skin. Carrots contain high levels of beta-carotene and beta-carotene is an anti-oxidant. Anti-oxidants help to neutralize free radicals that can damage cells and make you look older faster.

Simply said, carrots can help your skin fight premature aging and make you look younger longer. I don’t know a single person who would say no to that. 17 Carrot Recipes

5. Kale

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Kale has become the “celebrity” of leafy green vegetables recently and for good reason. I will be the first to admit, that when it comes to taste, kale is not top on my list. Let’s put taste aside for a moment, and look at what it can do for our skin. Kale is one of the healthiest vegetables on the earth. One serving of kale provides 192% of our daily needs for Vitamin A. Vitamin A helps to increase the rate of skin regeneration, leaving our skin looking brighter, tighter and younger. Vitamin A also helps to protect our skin against harmful UV rays.

There are many ways to incorporate this awesome vegetable into your diet in ways that will make your mouth happy too. My favorite is adding it to a morning smoothie, or chopping it finely and adding to a salad or stir-fry. How to Make Kale Chips

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