If you get irritation from cosmetics, then you, like me, lost a portion of the genetic lottery. Unfortunately, there is nothing you can do to change your genetics, you simply have to adapt your way of life to get the results you want. However, while the quest for cosmetics that don’t trigger your sensitive skin is often one that spans a lifetime, do you also get flare-ups while not wearing any makeup at all?
Yeah, me too.
I have some bad news for you. It isn’t because there is some cosmetic residue on your skin or something like that. It more likely has to do with not your makeup, but your diet. While other external factors can trigger sensitive skin like what detergent you use on your clothes or simply being outside in the sun or the pollen, sometimes the answer to creating fewer flare-ups is to change your diet.
How Diet Negatively Affects Sensitive Skin
There are a multitude of ingredients in food that can actually manifest on your skin. I’m not just talking about how grease and sugar can manifest as acne either. Common food triggers you might need to consider include:
- Whey and casein (found in dairy)
- Artificial dyes
- Chemical Additives
One of the most important things to rule out is gluten. Even if you don’t buy into the whole gluten-free lifestyle, one of the major symptoms of being gluten sensitive is skin lesions called dermatitis herpetiformis. They can look different on different people, but often they look like blisters or even patches of bad acne without the whiteheads. If you get skin lesions anywhere on your body, it is highly recommended to consult a dermatologist to find out the cause. Before doing so, you could try cutting out bread, beer, flour, and other items that may contain gluten just to see if they get better, but it could take weeks for positive results to turn up.
Furthermore, it is also important to consider the dyes and preservatives in food. For many who have sensitive skin, it is the same ingredients in cosmetics that actually trigger their skin sensitivity, so of course it would do the same in food! Go on a natural binge for awhile and see if it clears up. Limit yourself to fresh organic vegetables and meat to see if it makes a difference on your skin. If nothing else, it will make a difference on your waist line.
How Diet Can Positively Affect Sensitive Skin
If a poor diet can affect your skin negatively, then the opposite is of course true. Some foods can trigger your sensitive skin while the right food can actually make your skin look and feel better. The key to eating skin-healthy foods is really to just pick healthy and natural foods with lots, and lots of water. No one can ever stress enough how good being hydrated is for your skin.
If you are looking to adopt a skin healthy diet, consider adding in these foods:
- Green Tea – Ever wonder why there are so many green tea skin products? Because it is great for skin. The L-theaninie, catechins, and epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) amino acids and antioxidants are great from removing environmental pollutants from skin as well as supporting collagen and elastin to keep your skin looking young.
- Vitamin C-Rich Foods – When it comes to promoting your natural production of collagen, Vitamin C is king. It not only boosts your immune system, but it helps things heal fast. This will extend to your irritation providing you removed the factors that caused it. Enjoy berries, citrus, tomatoes, and broccoli in your diet to load up on it.
- Avocados – They aren’t called a super food for nothing. With up to six times more cartenoid antioxidants than other foods and ten tons of essential vitamins, avocado goes a long way towards a healthy body and healthy skin. Furthermore, its abundance of B vitamins will aid in soothing skin as well.
- Olive Oil – Like avocados, olive oil possesses an abundance of Vitamin E, omega-9’s and quercetin that are all good for promoting skin health as well as soothing sensitive skin. However, you don’t just want to use it as a cooking oil since it quickly deteriorates the beneficial ingredients. The best way to consume olive oil is cold in a homemade salad dressing.