Think beautiful skin starts in a bottle? Think again. Beautiful, clear skin starts in your kitchen and has everything to do with what you put into your body.
Your skin is a direct reflection of what’s happening digestively; I like to tell our clients to think of their skin as their intestines turned inside out. So when my clients come to me wanting clear skin yet are washing down their Doritos with Diet Coke, well…there’s work to be done in the education process.
A large part of our nutritional practice at the Flagship involves treating people with acne. And guess what? 90-95% of our clients with acne have either been on the Pill, on antibiotics, or some combination of both. This causes an overgrowth of unhealthy bacteria, and depletes the good bacteria present. And acne is the residual after-effect of this imbalance. The work we do to correct the imbalance is with a yeast-free, sugar-free diet rich in essential fatty acids and protein. This in effect will rebuild the digestive system and restore luminous, clear skin.
Protein helps repair the skin and supports liver detoxification and hormonal balance (another culprit of acne). The best choices include: wild Alaskan salmon and other cold-water fatty fish, chicken, turkey, eggs, Greek yogurt, whey protein, and grass-fed meats. Choose 2-4 ounces per meal.
Since carbohydrates have the greatest impact on blood sugar and inflammation, choose them wisely. Fruits and vegetables should be the base of your diet; you can incorporate ½ cup cooked of the following per day: barley, beans and legumes, brown rice, rolled or steel-cut oats, winter squash, sweet potato, buckwheat, quinoa, amaranth, and millet.
The right fats can literally make or break your health, and we all need them to survive. Go for avocados, raw nuts and seeds, nut butters and tahini, olives and olive oil, ground flaxseeds, raw coconut and coconut oil, and grape seed oil. They’ll correct dry chicken skin and regulate sebum production. Incorporate at least 2 tsp of fat per meal.
When you’re working hard to eat healthfully, the following can quickly undo all your efforts: white flour and sugar (pasta, bread, muffins, cake, and cookies—and no, whole wheat is not any better), fruit juices and dried fruits, aged cheeses, milk, soy, vinegar, alcohol, and mushrooms.
Cleaning up your act in the kitchen will ultimately help clear up your skin. Give your body 3-6 months for all the changes to take place. You’ll be glad you did!
NV Perricone, MD Flagship
791 Madison Avenue
New York, NY 10065