Unlock Radiant Skin With Our Indian Diet – Plan for Acne Free Skin

We’ve all had our horrors with acne at some point in our life or continue to do so, best dietician in India- Prachi Shah will suggest smart food choices for radiant skin but before getting into all the dos and don’ts for acne let us understand the largest organ of our body- SKIN and what exactly causes acne.

Skin is the made up of three layers:

 skin layers

  • Epidermis: This is the outermost layer of skin that acts as a protective layer from outside environment.
  • Dermis: A connective tissue that includes collagen and elastin. Hair follicles and sweat glands are also located here along with blood vessels that carry oxygen and other nutrients. The nerves in this layer provide sensation.
  • Hypodermis: which is a subcutaneous fat layer that provides insulation along with the blood vessels that regulate body temperature.

As mentioned above each layer has its own function. If you have noticed the thickness, colour, texture of skin varies all over your body so, certain skin care products are formulated keeping this in mind. Out skin has so many roles starting from regulating body temperature protecting our bodies from bacteria, dust, and harmful UV radiation.

This blog will highlight how to nourish and protect your skin so it can protect your body overall!

What do we mean by radiant skin?

Radiant skin is healthy, well rested glowing skin which can mean different things for different people since we all have varied goals. Radiance can also mean firmness, acne free, no major discoloration, good elasticity says best dietician in Vadodara– Prachi Shah

If we were to divide skin care into 2 major categories one would be external care and other would be internally that is via food.
Everyday there are tons of new products getting launched which makes it so confusing. The best solution out there will always be relying on experts. Visit a dermatologist or a specialist when it comes to treating and managing acne. From cleansing, moisturizing, treating, and protecting the skin (using sun protection creams) they will help you with not just products but also treatments which might be necessary in certain cases.

To understand the solution for acne we need to know the root cause. So why not start from the very beginning?

What is ACNE?

Face Acne

Acne is a chronic inflammatory skin condition that is caused when hair follicles are clogged with sebum (oil), dead skin cells, and dirt. These hair follicles can be anywhere on the body like face, back, thighs, neck, chest, arms etc. Acne affects teenagers and it can also persist throughout adulthood as well. Now this does not mean it is always caused by “external factors” in fact the root cause could be our diet or lifestyle.

There are so many types of acne lesions- blackheads, whiteheads, cysts, pustules, papules, and nodules.

Let us elaborate on causes of acne-

  • Excess sebum production
  • Bacterial overgrowth
  • Genetics- this plays a major role to make you more prone to acne
  • Side effects of certain medications such as oral contraceptives
  • Hormonal imbalance- this could be due to PCOS, during pregnancy, or puberty.

Where does diet play a role in all this?

It is found that frequent consumption of high glycemic foods can cause acne as such foods raise your blood sugar quickly. To combat this blood sugar a hormone called insulin is released in blood stream. Rise in insulin triggers our oil glands to produce more oil which eventually leads to acne.

Foods high in simple carbohydrates, trans fat, saturated fats, and dairy (sometimes) can cause acne. Examples of such foods are- white breads, naan (refined flour), deep fried items like fries and other Indian snacks, milk products.

  • We have seen the hype where milk is the culprit for acne so, let us discuss that-
    Milk such so nutritious specially if you are vegetarian, it is a major source of protein. Calcium, phosphorus, vitamin B-12, good fats are some other nutrients found in milk so why avoid it? Well lately more than milk itself the quality of milk matters a lot. Dairy is pro-inflammatory which means it might trigger the existing skin condition-acne specially when the quality of milk is deteriorated. To conclude this debate only consume milk when you can source a good quality, locally sourced milk and ONLY if it suits you. If quitting dairy helps improve your skin, then it is better to continue it that way
  • Sugar– We all know that too much sugar is bad but how?
    Foods rich in sugar, glucose, fructose disrupts our body’s collagen. Collagen being responsible for elasticity and skin firmness get destroyed leaving the skin more prone to acne.
  • Trans fat & Saturated fat– foods high in trans and saturated fats may increase your sebum production and clog your pores even more.

Indian diet for acne

Indian cuisine is so diverse and there are so many ingredients that are beneficial for skin health. Let us unlock the secret then-

  • Turmeric– Turmeric, a staple in Indian cooking, is a powerhouse of antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties. People apply turmeric to their faces for glow so imagine if consumed what all benefits it could give. You can add turmeric to milk (golden milk), sabzis, soups etc.
  • Amla– “Indian gooseberry” is one of the richest sources of vitamin C. Vitamin C is an antioxidant so it protects skin against UV damage and it supports synthesis of collagen. Collagen is the main structural protein found in skin.
  • Millets– Millets are talk of the town but they are so underrated for their benefits for skin. Millets nourish our skin by retaining the moisture and thus hydrating the skin from within, they protect our skin from harmful UV radiation and thus promote anti-ageing too. Some examples of millets are- Jowar, Bajra, Ragi, Buckwheat, Kodo millet etc
  • Herbal teas– There are so many teas around us and they come with tons of benefits.

Green tea is well known for its anti-inflammatory properties as its rich in anti-oxidants. It helps acne prone and sensitive skin.

Jasmin tea helps reduce sebum production and thus manages oily, acne prone skin conditions.

Peppermint tea works excellently towards hormonal acne. It encourages cell turnover, improves hormonal imbalance, and slows sebum production.

  • Coconut– Isn’t coconut the first thing that come to mind when we talk about hair? Today let me highlight the benefits it provides for skin. Coconut water/ dry coconut/ coconut oil moisturizes your skin, relieve inflammation, and thus treat acne.

You can also include coconut in your diet via coconut chutney, infusing coconut in certain sabzi, home-made coconut laddos etc.

  • Dark green leafy vegetable– Iron, calcium, folate, fibre, magnesium, vitamin A, C, E, K are all present in various leafy vegetables like- Spinach, Fenugreek, mustard greens, cabbage, turnip greens. Such balance of nutrients promotes healthy skin. You can make different sabzis, mix the greens in parathas and thepla, sauté the greens and have it in salads etc.
  • Beetroot– It works wonders on oily skin and helps detoxifying the toxins from body thus promoting acne free skin. It is loaded with Vitamin A and E, antioxidants which help the skin repair. Have beetroot juice along with other vegetables or have it as a salad by itself, you can also add beetroot to curd and make raita, add grated beetroot to parathas.
  • Pumpkin seeds– We all know that seeds are rich in good fats but these seeds are also packed with zinc and vitamin E which are both skin friendly nutrients. They help in management of cystic acne and reduce the “after acne marks”

Overall acne management is just like managing any health issue- MAKE A LIFESTYLE CHANGE. The major part includes your diet but there are also other changes to help you get that radiant glow and improve skin-

  • Exercise– It can improve overall skin texture and glow.
  • Alcohol– It can be said that alcohol affects acne indirectly. Alcohol increases oxidative stress in the body and deteriorates functions of liver which plays a role of detoxification, imbalances hormones- increases testosterone levels in women and contributes to acne.
  • Smoking– It is said to aggravate acne and is a risk factor for premature skin ageing.

As seen above Indian diets have endless ingredients that work towards skin so, why not savour the taste, make healthy tasty meals incorporating such options and gain health!

Nothing changes overnight. Acne is so deep rooted that you must be patient enough to firstly identify the root cause and then trust the process be it topical medicines or diet. Nourishing your body from within is the most sustainable change to adapt.

Remember radiant skin is not just from buying high end skincare products but from the food you eat, the choices you make and the lifestyle you inculcate.

Prachi Shah

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