We cut it, we style it, we love it, we loathe it. Let’s be honest – good hair makes us feel confident and sexy. If you really want beautiful skin, do the same things you would do to strengthen your heart, control your weight, lift your mood and live longer and better: Get regular exercise, sleep enough and eat well.

To get strong, healthy, shiny hair and beautiful skin you need to make sure that you eat a balanced, nutrient-rich diet.

“Your skin is the fingerprint of what is going on inside your body, and all skin conditions, from psoriasis to acne to aging, are the manifestations of your body’s internal needs,including its nutritional needs,” says Dr. Georgiana Donadio, founder of the National Institute of Whole Health.

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Best foods for skin and hair

1. Bone broth for Collagen

When you cook down bones, it breaks down the collagen so it becomes more easily digestible. This form of cooked collagen is better known to us as gelatin. Bone soup contains minerals that nourish the skin cells, and they calm inflammation in the body—and consequently on the face as well.

It contains amazing skin nutrients from magnesium, potassium, and calcium, to amino acids, collagen, hyaluronic acid, and glycosamino glycans. It is one of the best foods for skin and hair. So forget the Botox, drink more bone broth!

2. Horsetail tea for Silica

Silica is a trace mineral that strengthens the body’s connective tissues – muscles, tendons, hair, ligaments, nails, cartilage, and bone – and is vital for healthy skin. Silica deficiency can result in reduced skin elasticity.

Food sources of silica include leeks, green beans, garbanzo beans, strawberries, cucumber, mango, celery, asparagus and rhubarb.In its natural form, silica is found in the horsetail herb.

3. Aloe Vera Gel

Aloe leaves contain a plethora of antioxidants including, beta carotene, vitamin C and E that can help improve the skin’s natural firmness and keep the skin hydrated. Aloe vera gel contains two hormones: Auxin and Gibberellins.

These two hormones provide wound healing and anti- inflammatory properties that reduce skin inflammation. Giberellin in aloe vera acts as a growth hormone stimulating the growth of new cells [1]

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4. Seafood for a quality omega-3 fats, zinc and vitamin D

Oysters, scallops, and other shellfish are the highest animal sources of zinc. Omega-3s in fish oil helps alleviate dryness that leads to brittle hair and wrinkles. A study published in “Dermatologic Clinics” in 2013 reported that hair follicles can be impaired by a lack of essential fatty acids.

5. Leafy Green Vegetables

Vegetables are high in both water and nutrients (including essential minerals), and promote optimal functioning of your natural detoxification systems. Your best choice – dark green leafy veggies, such as:

– Chlorella
– Kale
– Spinach
– Dandelion greens
– Broccoli

A simple way to ensure you’re getting enough fresh vegetables in your diet is to juice them.

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6. Fermented Vegetables

Fermented foods help promote the growth of friendly intestinal bacteria and aid in digestion. They also support healthy immune function, including an increase in B vitamins, omega-3, digestive enzymes, lactase and lactic acid, and other immune chemicals that fight off harmful bacteria.

You might think that digestion doesn’t have anything to do with skin, but this isn’t the case. Your digestive system is in charge of absorbing nutrients (which are obviously important for healthy looking skin), removing toxins (which cause all those nasty breakouts) and keeping you hydrated (dehydration will definitely cause some wrinkles).

7. Coconut oil

From taming frizz to moisturizing dry skin, this natural ingredient has a wide range of beauty-boosting properties, thanks to saturated fats, vitamin E and proteins. Saturated fat in coconut oil are medium chain fatty acids or triglycerides.

When applied on the skin, they keep it smooth to the touch. Due to the presence of these fats, coconut oil also retains the moisture content of the skin. Coconut oil is better than the average face and hair moisturizer and one of the best foods for skin and hair [2].

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8. Citrus Fruit for vitamin C

Vitamin C aids in your body’s production of collagen, which is the protein that forms the basic structure of your skin. Collagen breakdown can leave your skin saggy, and vitamin C will help tighten it back up.

9. Colourful root vegetables

These foods full of Carotenoids, which include carotene and xanthophils, give red, orange and yellow pigment make your face actually look healthier than being tanned [3] Beta carotene is a powerful antioxidant has been found to help protect against cancer and aging.Eat more sweet potatoes, butternut squash and bell peppers which are perfect foods foods for skin and hair.

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10. Nuts and seeds

The benefits of nuts especially almonds — have to do with antioxidant activity. Vitamin E fights skin-aging free radicals, and also helps your skin hold in moisture. Pick up a handful of pumpkin seeds for your daily dose of zinc which is a wonderful antioxidant, but also in skin, zinc assists in the proper structure of proteins and cell membranes, improves wound healing, has anti-inflammatory effects, and protects against UV radiation.

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11. Liver for vitamin A and D

Lack of vitamin A causes the skin to become keratinized and scaly, and mucus secretion is suppressed. Rough, dry skin is a common sign of vitamin A deficiency. vitamin A, which is well absorbed by the body, can be found in a variety of traditional foods. The most vitamin A-rich foods are liver and cod liver oil.

12. Nettles

Nettle is believed to improve the condition of hair, providing hair follicles with vitamins and minerals to produce stronger and healthier hair. Research trials indicate that it may be helpful in promoting hair growth. It contains silica, which is a very important component of healthy hair, skin, and nail tissue.

Silica is a constituent element of an enzyme called prolyl hydrolase. Prolyl Hydrolase is a key component of healthy collagen growth. Collagen is the connective tissue in your skin which keeps it smooth, elastic, and fresh. As you age, your body has a harder and harder time keeping up with the demands of collagen production.

Silica-rich herbal extracts like stinging nettle nourish your body with what it needs to produce healthy new skin tissue. Some research studies have indicated that stinging nettle may be able to help prevent hair loss by balancing hormones. While research is still needed in this area, initial results seem hopeful [4].

A Word Of Caution: the beneficial herb also has its side effects. The nettle leaf side effects are directly related to their combination with other drugs and also with the health condition of individuals. Nettle leaf is known to increase blood pressure and it is a powerful diuretic.

So, play safe and consult your doctor before you start using nettle. These ingredients individually and synergistically contribute to softer, smoother, moister skin, without taxing your body with potential toxins. Along with a nutrient-dense diet and pure water, a truly all-natural, organic moisturizer can help you achieve a clear and radiant complexion.

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