Feed your skin from the inside out
You are what you eat is a cliche but true. When I look at my clients diets and discover they have 6 cups of coffee a day, a ‘health’ bar for breakfast, white bread sandwiches for lunch, chocolate at 5pm to give them a boost of energy, 3 or 4 glasses of wine in the evening and they don’t know why they’re so exhausted, we start a journey of making changes that will give them energy and vitality.
I liken it to running a Rolls Royce on lawnmower petrol. And the older we get, our diet becomes ever more important as we make fewer enzymes and less stomach acid to break down our food, so the food we eat needs to be the most nutritious we can make it.
Our skin is often the first place we signs of deficiencies.
No 3 of my top 10 – feed your skin with Zinc
Zinc is often forgotten when people think about nutrients needed for their skin. But zinc is present in both the dermis and the epidermis with about 6% of your total body zinc found in skin. It is essential for normal skin function. It helps to stabilise cell membranes which sounds a bit technical but basically, it means that cells function better and the zinc gives them protection against free radical damage. We know that ageing and premature ageing is often caused by inflammation and free radical damage.
Zinc is stored in your liver and kidney mainly, and it is a crucial mineral for many biochemical pathways in the body.
Deficiency of zinc:
Not enough zinc can lead to changes in skin pigmentation and skin lesions on areas that have been exposed to friction or pressure – such as elbows.
If you have ever wondered why your taste buds don’t seem as good as normal, you could be deficient in Zinc.
If you cut yourself the speed of healing is also dependent on the amount of zinc in your system.
It’s useful to know that if your diet is high in cereals brackets which contain phytate) it can interfere with intestinal absorption of zinc, similarly, excess copper can also affect zinc absorption.
For anyone with Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, alcoholic cirrhosis, type 1 diabetes, their absorption of zinc from their diet will be reduced so they should probably supplement to keep their levels at a healthy level.
The contraceptive pill can interfere with zinc absorption as can diuretic drugs.
Foods containing zinc:
Oysters, liver, beef, chicken beef, veal, crab, turkey, seeds, brazil nuts, cashews, cheese, egg yolk, milk, shrimp.
“ Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food”, so said Hippocrates in the 5th century BC. In today’s world this is probably more important than ever before. Hippocrates is known as the father of western medicine, he recognised the value of eating well and the potential of certain foods for good health.