4 Diet Mistakes That Are Actually Making You Age Poorly – SheFinds

When it comes to your diet, the first thing you likely think of is how it affects your body–namely your tummy, waist, and any other area you may be looking to lose weight in or strengthen. However, your diet informs so much more than the size or shape of your body, and an unhealthy eating plan may be causing more than just weight gain or a deficiency in certain nutrients. Apart from the foods you’re eating to promote the wellness of your body, your diet can also have a major impact on your appearance as well, in particular, how quickly you may be aging. 

While some unhealthy habits can result in weight gain or a general feeling of malaise, other habits can also have a profound effect on your complexion, promoting the development of premature fine lines and wrinkles, dry patches, and even sagging skin. If you’re hoping to clean up your diet for your body and your skin, these are the top four mistakes that experts warn you could be making that are negatively affecting your aging process.

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Lack Of Antioxidants 

Antioxidants are essential for boosting your metabolism, but they can also help to keep your skin fresh and healthy for longer. Known for fighting off free radicals which can cause damage to the complexion, not consuming enough antioxidant rich food may allow your skin to succumb to aging more quickly. “When there are more free radicals present than there are antioxidants, our skin cells begin to weaken and show signs of ageing. Collagen and elastin are two proteins that give our skin structure but poor lifestyle habits can accelerate damage to these proteins which can leave our skin sagging in appearance and increase fine lines and wrinkles,” notes consultant dermatologist Rachael Burns. “A diet rich in antioxidants such as blueberries may help combat free radical damage and promote longevity.”

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Too Much Sugar

It’s no secret that sugar isn’t great for your health, but it can also have a major impact on the appearance of your complexion as well, particularly in terms of aging. “A diet that is high in sugar is pro-inflammatory and also promotes unhealthy gut microbiomes. Both of these variables have been shown to accelerate the aging process,” warns Burns. 

“Interestingly, research from the Mount Sinai School of Medicine has shown that this can be reversed if both sugary and processed foods are removed from the diet as indicated by inflammatory markers decreasing.” If you still crave sugar but don’t want to damage your skin, try adding more fruit into your diet as a natural replacement. An added bonus: berries are packed with antioxidants which can help to reverse the damage an excess of sugar may have done.

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Skipping Fish

While it shouldn’t be eaten every day (ya know, mercury poisoning and all), fish is a vital addition to your diet which can provide ample healthy fats that bolster your overall health as well as slow down aging. In particular, salmon offers ample omega-3 fatty acids, hydrating the skin and reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. “Unlike most other fats, omega-3 fats are considered “essential” and must be obtained from our diet as our body cannot naturally produce them. Research from the Journal of Nutrition suggests that a diet rich in Omega-3s can help decrease the shortening of your Telomeres which is the end part of your DNA that is directly correlated with longevity,” explains Burns. When in doubt, having fish 2-3x a week should be sufficient to reap the anti-aging benefits.

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Not Enough Fruit 

Fruits and vegetables are essential for a healthy and well rounded diet, whether or not you’re striving for weight loss. But skimping out on fruit can also have a negative impact on your skin as they’re often loaded with vitamins and minerals which can help to keep wrinkles at bay. “Not eating enough fruit and other foods that are high in vitamin C could be contributing to aging, especially skin aging. Vitamin C is required for the synthesis of collagen, which is a type of protein needed to help keep your skin elastic, youthful, and firm,” notes nutritionist Heather Hanks

Some fruits which are high in vitamin C are oranges, kiwi, and berries, so snacking on these in between meals can not only help to curb your sugar cravings, but will also bolster your appearance over time, keeping premature aging at bay while simultaneously flushing toxins from your body. 

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