When you look in the mirror, what gets under your skin the most (pardon the pun)? Is it the wrinkles that make you look 5-10 years older? Or perhaps it’s the sun spots or crow’s feet?
Virtually everybody wants to have healthy, younger looking skin. And how do most people attack skin problems? By applying moisturizing creams, lotions, serums, masks, concealers, etc.
The pursuit of beauty is a costly endeavor. According to a survey for the discount online coupon site, Groupon, on average, women spend in excess of $200,000 over their adult years on skin and anti-aging products.
One major problem with relying on skin care products for anti-aging, besides the expense, is that many conventional skin care products contain synthetic ingredients. These ingredients may actually end up doing your skin—and your overall health— more harm than good.
What most people don’t take into account is that looking younger requires feeding your skin from the inside out. In other words, when it comes to your skin’s appearance, you are literally what you eat.
Miracle Noodles For Healthy Skin?
Did you know Miracle Noodles may contribute to skin health? It’s true. But don’t make a DIY mask out of Miracle Noodles. Instead, eat them for healthier skin. What’s in Miracle Noodles that contribute to anti-aging? The answer: prebiotic fiber.
If you’re not familiar with prebiotic fiber, think of it as food in your gut that your friendly bacteria love to eat. The concept of prebiotics was introduced relatively recently, in 1995. A couple of researchers described prebiotic fiber as “a non-digestible food ingredient that beneficially affects the host [you] by selectively stimulating the growth and/or activity of one or a limited number of bacteria in the colon, and thus improves host health.”
Roughly a decade ago, the definition of prebiotics was expanded. Prebiotic fiber is now also considered “a selectively fermented ingredient that results in specific changes in the composition and/or activity of the gastrointestinal microbiota.”
There are a few characteristics of prebiotic fiber. First, it’s resistant to the gastric juices of the stomach; it can resist the belly’s harsh acidity. Prebiotics also aren’t broken down by enzymes. Also, prebiotics don’t get absorbed in the gastrointestinal tract.
Prebiotic Fiber For Skin Health
Your skin will be its healthiest if your gut is host mostly to friendly bacteria. Prebiotics are plant fibers that provide nourishment for the good bacteria. If you’re not getting enough prebiotic fiber in your diet, it’s possible that not as many friendly bacteria will be able to colonize in your gut.
The more prebiotic fiber you consume, it’s possible that your skin will look healthier. And there’s some research to back up this assertion.
In one study, the consumption of prebiotics was shown to decrease the risk of development, as well as the severity of allergic skin diseases, such as atopic dermatitis.
In another study, hairless mice were exposed to UV radiation. In the experiment group, the mice were fed a prebiotic fiber for 12 weeks. The mice that were fed the prebiotic fiber had enhanced water retention and also did not develop erythema (a superficial reddening of the skin, usually forming in patches).
Sources Of Prebiotic Fiber
So besides Miracle Noodle, what other healthy foods contain prebiotic fiber? Here are some of the healthiest sources:
- Jerusalem artichoke
- Seaweed and microalgae
- Cacao (the raw ingredient for chocolate)
Eat Your Veggies For Healthier Skin
Green leafy veggies are also excellent sources of prebiotic fiber, not to mention they are loaded with vitamins and minerals. The nutrients in low-starch veggies help prevent the breakdown of skin collagen.
Out of the thousands of proteins that make you, well, you, collagen protein is the most abundant in the human body. Collagen provides structural integrity to your connective tissue. Not only can veggies prevent collagen breakdown, the nutrients in them can regenerate collagen.
High nutrient-density veggies also benefit the skin by stimulating the release of stomach acid. If you have acne, it could be an indication that your gut has insufficient friendly bacteria (and you’re not eating enough prebiotic fiber) and/or you have low stomach acid. If you don’t have enough stomach acid, the food you eat can’t completely digest. This creates inflammatory conditions such as acne.
Taking digestive enzymes as well as supplemental hydrochloric acid with pepsin (your tummy’s main gastric juices) may help clear up acne.
Anti-Aging Herbal Remedies
In addition to prebiotic and probiotic supplements as well as digestive enzymes, specific herbs and herbal formulas can enhance your beauty.
Therapeutic fungi (mushrooms) have been receiving lots of attention as of late in the West for their immune-supporting benefits. And in China, medicinal mushrooms such as reishi (ganoderma lucidum) have been used for over 2,000 years.
Research studies also support the use of edible mushrooms for skin. A study in Aging and Disease says consuming reishi mushroom extract regularly offers numerous anti-aging effects. Reishi essentially acts like a vacuum cleaner, sucking up free-radicals. ‘Shrooms such as reishi also prevent fat cells from becoming damaged (oxidized).
Another famous traditional Chinese medicinal herb, schisandra fruit, was shown to protect human fibroblasts (cells that produce the skin’s connective tissue matrix) from UV radiation.
Conclusion: Feed Your Skin Superfoods
Superfoods have become a buzzword in natural health. Basically, a superfood offers a high amount of vitamins and minerals in a relatively low amount of calories. (Bacon cheeseburgers: low nutrient density. Broccoli: definitely nutrient dense). But nutrition labels don’t tell the whole story. There are hundreds if not thousands of phytonutrients in organic plant-based foods that benefit health in several ways. And without doubt, these compounds profoundly influence how resistant our skin is to the effects of aging.
The takeaway: if you want the healthiest looking skin, it’s yet another reason you should have listened to your mom when you were younger when she told you to eat your veggies.