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Raw Food for Healthy Skin

By: Sarah Knowles BA, MA - Updated: 20 Jun 2012 | comments*Discuss
 
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Many people believe that eating raw food is good for your skin. And they’re right. Switching from a diet where most of your food is processed and cooked to one that is rich in raw fruits and vegetables can have a profound effect on your skin, and also give you more energy overall.

Incorporating more raw food into your diet can have an affect not only how your skin looks, but how it feels and how healthy it actually is. A healthy diet can make you look fresher, younger and more radiant, and can make you feel a lot better too!

Raw Food Facts

Skin is our biggest organ, and it needs to be fed the right foods to keep it looking good. Eating raw foods gives your skin the essential amino acids, vitamins and minerals it needs. Here are some facts you may not be aware of when it comes to eating raw...

  • FACT: Fresh foods are full of essential fatty acids, which you need for good skin.
  • FACT: Raw foods boost your metabolism. It can take a bit more work to digest them, but instead of using energy to get rid of toxins inherent in some cooked food, the body will concentrate instead on feeding the cells in your body.
  • FACT: Getting beautiful skin starts on the inside, so eat raw foods rich in enzymes, such as papaya and pineapple. Without them, you can suffer from mineral deficiencies, which can show up as premature aging of the skin.
  • FACT: Sulphur is needed to produce the collagen needed for healthy skin, and also improves acne and gives us stronger, healthy nails. But it is lost when food is heated or cooked. Foods such as broccoli, garlic, red pepper and onion are rich in sulphur.
  • FACT: Antioxidants battle the free radicals that contribute to skin aging. Raw foods rich in antioxidants include berries and citrus fruits.
  • FACT: Some raw foods can help counteract the effect of sun damage on the skin. Raw carrots and apricots, for example, contain the antioxidant beta-carotene, which can do exactly this.
  • FACT: Eating raw food gives your skin more moisture, as the cooking process takes most of the moisture away from foods.

Taking It To the Extreme

Eating raw food is good for you, but some people take it to the extreme, existing on a diet that consists solely of food in its raw form. They say that eating only uncooked food is what nature has intended, and believe that as cooking food breaks up important enzymes, it is therefore too hard on the digestive system.

Raw foodists are people who eat at least 75 percent of their food raw, and they say the health benefits are endless. Among them are clearer skin, more energy, and a stronger immune system. They also claim to suffer from lower cholesterol and fewer digestive problems, and have a lower incidence of Chronic Fatigue syndrome and Crohn’s disease.

But some food isn’t meant to be eaten raw – and not only obvious things such as chicken and steak, which contain dangerous bacteria which is killed off when heated to a certain temperature. Tomatoes release lycopene and other cartenoids only when they are cooked, as do some leafy green vegetables and red and yellow fruits. And when you bake bread, an enzyme is activated that helps the body to better absorb calcium and zinc.

Everything in Moderation

Eating raw food for clearer skin and better health overall is an excellent idea. A diet that is rich in fresh fruit and vegetables and poor in processed, cooked food is better for the body overall, including the skin.

The old adage is true: beauty starts from the inside out, and what you put into your body shows on the outside. Eat plenty of raw foods in their natural state, with the enzymes left intact, to improve your overall digestive system and counteract the effects of premature ageing on your skin. You’ll feel better – and you’ll look better too!

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