You Are What You Eat: Diet & Its Effects on Skin & Hair Health

Did you know that the key to achieving radiant skin and luscious hair could be your diet? Our diet plays a crucial role not only in nourishing our bodies, but also in enhancing our skin and hair health - the foods we consume can significantly impact the appearance and vitality of our skin and hair. Even if you’re using all the ‘right’ products, you’ll find it hard to achieve the hair and skin of your dreams if you aren’t getting all of the nutrients you need.


Nourish from Within

Our bodies need a wide variety of vitamins, minerals, and trace elements in order to function correctly. Eating a diet rich in fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, and healthy fats provides essential nutrients that promote skin and hair health from within to support collagen production, fight oxidative stress, and maintain hydration.


Hydration is Key

Just as our skin needs moisturisers to keep it hydrated from the outside, we also need to have an adequate water intake to maintain our skin and hair moisture levels from the inside. Hydrated skin appears plump and youthful, while well-hydrated hair is less prone to breakage and split ends. The amount of water we need to drink varies depending on your age, diet, and lifestyle, but as a general rule aim to drink around eight glasses of water per day. You can also support overall hydration by including hydrating foods in your diet such as cucumber, watermelon and celery.  


Healthy Fats for Supple Skin and Shiny Hair

Another thing that is crucial for maintaining skin and hair elasticity is incorporating healthy fats into your diet. Found in things like avocado, nuts, and fatty fish, healthy fats help to regulate sebum production, restore the skin’s protective barrier, and improve microcirculation to the skin and scalp.


Omega-3 fatty acids (like those found in salmon or flaxseeds) also have anti-inflammatory properties, so they can be useful in calming irritated sensitive skin, even with skin conditions like eczema and psoriasis.


The Power of Protein

Protein is the main building block of skin and hair, and it is essential for maintaining their structure and integrity. Protein supports collagen production, repairs damaged tissues, and promotes hair growth - including protein-rich foods in each meal helps keep the skin firm and supported, and the hair strong and resilient.


While we typically think of meat when we talk about protein, it can come from a variety of sources, both animal and plant based. Eggs, dairy, nuts, tofu, and legumes like chickpeas and lentils are all great ways to boost your protein intake. 


Antioxidant Protection

Antioxidants are your skin and hair's security guards – they help to neutralise free-radicals and protect you from environmental damage. Anti-oxidant rich foods like citrus fruit, leafy greens and green tea will give your skin the support it needs to combat premature aging, improve skin texture, enhance hair strength and shine, and even reduce dandruff and improve hair growth.


Avoiding Triggers

Just as there are foods that will help you on your journey to healthier skin and hair, there are others that may set you back. Foods that are high in refined sugars and simple carbohydrates can lead to spikes in insulin, which can stimulate the skin’s oil glands and exacerbate acne – this effect is also seen in dairy products (particularly cow’s milk).

Additionally, spicy food and foods high in saturated fats can promote inflammation, which can aggravate skin conditions like rosacea. While we are firm believers of ‘everything in moderation’, if you’re struggling with specific skin concerns, it may pay to look at your diet for potential triggers.


By nourishing your body from within with a variety of fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, healthy fats, and antioxidant-rich foods, you can support your skin and hair health naturally. Remember, beauty starts from the inside out, so fuel your body with the nutrients it needs to shine from within.