A Berry Good Way To Improve Your Skin…
Without a doubt the humble berry is an excellent food group to consider including in your diet if you want beautiful, glowing skin.
We’ve all heard of blackcurrants, blackberries, blueberries, cranberries, raspberries and strawberries but there are several lesser known berries, such as the acai berry and the goji berry that are also an excellent source of nutrition for those who wish to maintain good skin health.
Generally, berries are thought to be good skin foods because their nutrients help the body to produce collagen, the substance that helps to keep your skin smooth and supple.
Berries are also packed with skin-friendly antioxidants that are effective in neutralizing damaging free radicals. Free radicals are molecules generated by the skin often as a result of excessive exposure to the sun’s harmful UV rays and other forms of pollution. They can cause cell and tissue damage. Therefore, causing premature aging of the skin.
Berries are an excellent source of vitamins C & E, riboflavin and fiber, also low in calories, fat, cholesterol & sodium.
So what more evidence do you need? Eating skin-boosting berries can help you to achieve a naturally healthy complexion and what’s more they taste delicious, making healthy snack at any time of the day.
So here’s the low down on the various berries that will help to keep your skin looking younger, smoother and more vibrant.
Blackberry – Native to temperate parts of the northern hemisphere and South America
Blackberries provide a rich natural source of vitamin C, which is vital for the maintenance of healthy skin. They are also a good source of fiber and this helps to aid digestion. A healthy digestive system is also vital part of skin health. If the body is unable to rid itself of waste products efficiently, the skin may show the signs of toxins in the form of dull, pallid and puffy skin.
The seeds found on the fruit also contain skin-friendly omega 3 and 6 oils that have been found to encourage the appearance of smooth, supple skin.
Blackcurrant – Native to central and northern Europe and Northern Asia.
Blackcurrants are packed full of vitamin C and anti-oxidants and also contain good levels of iron and potassium.
It is recommended that you incorporate blackberries into your diet if you suffer from inflammatory skin conditions such as eczema. This is because blackcurrants contain anti-inflammatory properties that may help to improve the appearance of dry skin conditions.
Blueberry – Native to North America
Blueberries are well known for their blood-cleansing and antiseptic properties.
They make an excellent choice of fruit for anyone who suffers from acne as the vitamins and minerals they contain help to neutralize the skin’s natural oil levels. The high levels of vitamin C in blueberries will also help to strengthen the blood vessels that sit just below the surface of the skin.
If you are prone to spider veins or broken capillaries then adding blueberries to your diet could help to improve and prevent the problem.
Cranberry – Native to the Northern Hemisphere
Cranberries provide a good source of many essential micronutrients, flavonoids as well as anti-oxidants and vitamin C.
If your skin is prone to spots or acne, drinking cranberry juice may help to relieve the symptoms. Cranberries and cranberry juice work as a natural detoxifier and will help the body to rid itself of unwanted toxins and this in turn has a beneficial effect on skin health.
These little red berries may also help inflammatory skin conditions that are itchy, such as psoriasis and fungal skin infections. This is because the helpful vitamins and minerals they contain help to restore the skin’s natural pH balance.
Most people take cranberry in the form of juice or as a concentrated food supplement pills.
Raspberry – Cultivated in various forms worldwide
Raspberries are another nutrient rich fruit that are beneficial for your skin due to the high levels of vitamin C, anti-oxidants and ellagic acid found in them. Ellagic acid is currently being researched as a potent tool in the prevention of cancer and especially skin cancer.
Strawberry – Cultivated worldwide
Many early herbalists from years gone by recommend strawberries as a natural aid for digestion and skin complaints – including spots and acne.
And it is true that strawberries are naturally diuretic and have mild laxative properties. They are also thought to be a powerful blood cleanser. As with all the berries strawberries have a high vitamin C content and are therefore beneficial for healthy collagen production.
However some people find that they are allergic to them and eating them can cause itchy skin rashes. If this is the case for you then strawberries are, unfortunately, best avoided.
Less Known Berries
7) Acai Berry
Acai Berry – Native to Central and South America
Acai berries look very similar to blueberries in size and color however they are native only to parts of Central and Southern America.
The pulp of the berries can be used to make nutritious smoothies but most people take Acai in the form of a concentrated pill, juice or powder form.
The health benefits of acai berries are reported to be many and they are thought to be good for a whole range of health complaints, however further research needs to be done to prove certain claims.
The high anti-oxidant content of acai berries is not disputed so they can be included into your diet as a part of your skin health maintenance regime. By doing so your skin will get a power-packed hit of super-skin nutrients.
The beauty industry is also interested in the use of acai berry for the skin and you will find it on the list of ingredients in many anti-aging skin care beauty products.
8) Goji Berry
Goji Berry – Native to Asia Particularly the Himalayas, Japan, China and Korea
Goji berries are another new berry on the block and are sometimes referred to as a ‘super berry’.
They can have a beneficial effect on skin conditions of all kinds due to their powerful blood cleansing properties and are highly recommended for the high levels of nutrients they contain.
Goji berries apparently have 50 times more vitamin C than oranges, more beta-carotene than carrots and provide a good source of iron.
They also contain vitamins from the B family, Vitamin E, amino acids and are of course packed with those skin-friendly antioxidants, which help to maintain the structure of the skin, keeping it looking soft and supple and prevent premature aging.