10 foods that are BAD for your skin

by Sobiya N. Moghul

Skin

Aerated drinks can be nightmarish for the skin

1. Excess salt
Excess salt retains additional fluid in the body causing swelling and apuffy look to the skin. The skin texture is spoilt on prolonged salt abuse. Papads, pickles, salted foods, table salt, brined/canned food products are the potential sources of salt to the body.

2. Excess caffeine
Caffeine is a known stimulant which increase the cortisol production in the body and enhances the ageing process by thinning the skin. This dehydrates the skin and even leads to wrinkling. In addition, caffeine is a diuretic which further increases the risk of dehydration. So beware when you decide to go for an additional helping of coffee, tea or chocolates too!

3. Alcohol
Alcohol inhibits the Anti-Diuretic Hormone secretion thus causing dehydration. Furthermore, it also causes vasodilatation, which then leads to excess water loss through the skin. This is also known to be a contributing factor to acute phases of psoriasis as per the American Academy of Dermatology.

4. Excess sugar 
Not literally only sugar, but even jaggery and honey!

5. Aerated beverages 
Aerated drinks can be nightmarish for the skin. Exceptions are the so-called diet-cokes and the family. But their caffeine content makes them the villains for skin health.

6. Processed foods
Refined or processed foods like maida (refined flour) and its products, canned and sweetened fruits and juices are low in fiber content, thus increasing the glycemic load. Moreover the processed foods are often high in their salt/sodium content. As a by-product of processing, these also lose the nutrients of the parent food products important for skin health.

7. Red meat
Consumption of red meat, especially fat-laden parts can lead to inflammatory reactions. This is by the virtue of saturated fat content of meats. In excess, free radicals generated overpowers the anti-oxidation capacity of the free radical scavengers in the body.

8. Fried foods and hydrogenated fat
Excess heat application like during frying of foods and production of hydrogenated fat (margarine, vanaspati ghee) leads to oxidation of fatty acids and destruction of anti-oxidant nutrients like vitamin E, omega-3 fats present in the oils/fat. Generation of trans-fatty acids encourages free radical production by fueling the oxidation process. So next time you thing margarine is healthier to butter…you’ll remember reading this!

9. Excess use of artificial sweeteners/colours/flavours
These chemicals lodge into our systems and are difficult to flush out of our body. Overuse and inability to flush them out in time could be the pre-cursor for free radical production.

10. Crash diets
Crash diets affect skin health through all the 3 mechanisms discussed before. Dehydration is a side effect of crash dieting. Studies suggest that consuming lot of water throughout this phase barely helps and this is because body doesn’t retain water due to nutritional deprivation and lack of balanced meals.

Crash diets are known to cause dramatic fluctuations in blood sugar levels, no wonder acnes are so common amongst anorexics and bulemics. Skin requires antioxidant nutrients (Vitamins A, C, E, zinc, selenium, etc.) that scavenge the free radicals. The Journal of Investigative Dermatology (Feb, 2005) testifies that long term vitamins C and E intake is linked with reduced incidence of sunburns from exposure to UVB radiation. These antioxidant vitamins help protect against DNA damage by protecting the skin structure. Crash diets are known to cause nutrient deficiencies and thereby the lack of antioxidants too.

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Read this article in Times of India

 

Op-ed pieces and contributions are the opinions of the writers only and do not represent the opinions of Y!/YNaija.

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