Have you ever walked along the street or in a crowded mall and suddenly noticed a woman with all the right ingredients for beauty – fine facial features, good bones, long thick eyelashes, adequate height and straight posture – but who didn’t quite measure up to her potential? Looking a bit closer, you notice that her skin is drab and sallow, she has no sparkle in her eyes, and her hair is brittle – looking. Chances are that poor nutrition is stealing than woman’s beauty.
Vitamin A is a versatile vitamin that affects nearly every tissue in the body. Scientists have known for a long time that the body needs “A” for normal growth and repair of epithelial cells, which line the respiratory, digestive and reproductive tracts and form the outer layer of skin.
Too little of “A” leaves your skin dry and scaly and can lead to premature aging of the skin. Taken internally, it can help clear up acne; applied externally, it promotes the growth of healthy epidermal cells and also smooths dry, flaky skin. Foods rich in vitamin “A” include carrots, green and yellow vegetables, avocados, sweet potatoes, apricots, milk, eggs, fish, fish liver oil, liver, peaches, prunes and turnip greens.
Don’t go overboard with “A”. Unlike most other vitamins, which are water – soluble, “A” is stored by the body, primarily in the liver, and can build up to toxic levels when taken in excess. If you eat plenty of fruits and vegetables, you shouldn’t need any supplements.
Vitamin B1 – Thiamine:
Thiamine help prevent such skin disorders as shingles and eczema, as well as digestive disturbances, fatigue and nervousness. Thiamine is present in brown rice, wheat germ, bran, beef, pork, lamb, mushrooms, soybeans, brewer’s yeast, peanuts, walnuts, sunflower seeds, egg yolk and milk. Be careful when cooking foods rich in thiamine; it is heat – sensitive, and cooking can damage it.
Vitamin B3 – Niacin:
Niacin improves blood circulation and promotes organ tissue health, especially in the liver, kidneys, heart and brain, and the muscles, too. It assists in maintaining smooth skin that’s soft and free oil inflammation and dermatitis. Lean meat, poultry, seafood, peanuts, brewer’s yeast, wheat germ, brown rise, organ meats and rhubarb are all rich in niacin.
Pantothenic Acid (Vitamin B5)
Pantothenic acid simulates the production of adrenal hormones, which are crucial to healthy skin, it also protects against cellular damage caused by excessive sunlight radiation, therefore aiding in the prevention of premature aging and wrinkles.
Pantothenic acid is present in whole grains, rice, egg yolks, beef, cauliflower, yeast, peanuts and organ meats.
Vitamin B6 – Pyridoxine
B6 Helps control depression, sleeplessness, nervousness and irritability by maintaining the sodium – potassium balance in the body and regulating body chemistry. Women taking birth control pills, which can upset this balance, may need extra B6.
Equally important is B6’s role in the metabolism of skin tissue, which helps prevent dermatitis, eczema, sore lips and dry skin.
Recent evidence suggest that adequate intake of B6 during pregnancy can prevent stretch marks after childbirth.
Vitamin B13 – Biotin
Because of its marvelous effects on skin and hair, biotin is known as the “beauty vitamin.” It helps protect against dry skin conditions, scaliness, abnormal skin coloring, eczema, seborrheic dermatitis and Leiner’s disease, an oily rash that sometimes afflicts infants. Biotin is found in brewer’s yeast, eggs, nuts, whole grains, legumes, brown rice, sardines, milk and cottage cheese.
Vitamin C (Ascorbic acid)
Vitamin C has received a lot of press these days because of the number of important functions it affects in the body. Topping the list is its component of the connective tissue that holds the body cells – and the body – together. Because collagen is necessary for wounds to heal, maintaining and adequate level of “C” is particularly important during times of illness. It also plays an important role in skin pigmentation.
Current research shows evidence that external application of “C” improves the function of skin capillaries and helps dissipate small blood clots. Vitamin C is present in almost any fresh fruit or vegetable and rose – hip tea.
Vitamin D is known for its importance in the production and maintenance of healthy bones, teeth, nerves, skin and heart; it may also help fight acne. It can be found in eggs, bone meal, milk, fish, fruits, vegetables, cottage cheese, fish – liver oils and sunshine.
Vitamin E’s anti – oxidant properties aid in the production of new cells and in the regeneration of the skin. It plays an important role in preventing scars and promoting healing. Those same qualities en “E” may also help keep skin smooth by delaying the aging process. It relieves the itchiness of dry, aging skin when applied externally. You can find vitamin “E” in eggs, green leafy vegetables, corn, wheat germ, vegetable oils, asparagus, yeast, whole grains and mussels.
Vitamin F (Unsaturated fatty acids)
Vitamin F supplies the fat essential to every cell of the body. It can prevent skin disorders including eczema, acne and dry skin. You can find unsaturated fats in wheat germ, vegetable oils, cod – liver oil and nuts.