Probably if we all had a dollar bill whenever we heard that expression, we would all be independently wealthy by now. But, in all actuality, it is true, and what you eat does have a direct effect on not only your general health, but also on the health of your skin. Eating what is always called a balanced diet is what keeps your metabolism running as it should. Taking care to eat healthy foods not only keeps all our tissues and organs strong and healthy, it also takes care of our most visible organ, our skin.
What Makes Up a Balanced Diet?
It is considered now that there are five main food groups that will form a balanced diet. These groups are – protein, vegetables, grains, dairy products, and fruits. Ideally, the foods from these groups will consumed in adequate portions every day to provide all the nutrition you require. However, most of us will not be able, or willing, to be so precise in how we plan our diets, which is why we take vitamins. A look at each of the groups will show how each is important to your health.
- Meat products supply proteins that might well be thought of as our body’s building blocks; they make up a good part of our skin, bones, tissues, ligaments, and muscles. Red blood cells are protein and carry oxygen to every part of your body, including your skin. Protein is needed to build replacement cells for cells that have begun to deteriorate and undergo apoptosis. The skin on your face is renewed about once a month, and if you haven’t eaten properly, you may be denying your body a chance to keep problem skin under control. Check out Facing Acne for information that will make it easier to deal with acne.
- Vegetables are likewise important as regards your health and wellbeing. Some vegetables are best eaten raw, such as salad ingredients, but others actually provide more nutrition when cooking has helped to break them down a bit. Vegetables not only provide us with fiber that assists our basic digestion, but also with vitamins and minerals. Vegetables provide carbohydrates, as well, as simple sugar.
- Grains are an excellent source of carbohydrates. Carbohydrates might well be called the fuel of our bodies, as they change from starch when we eat them into glucose which is carried to all parts of our body as energy. Bread, muffins, cookies, nuts, and legumes all contain the carbohydrates you need to keep your body active. Carbohydrates also keep our muscle tissue from being used as food when we are hungry, which is something to think about if you are on a low-, or no-carbohydrate diet. Your brain ‘feeds’ exclusively on carbohydrates, so make sure that you eat enough of them for adequate mental functioning.
- Fruits are full of simple sugars which our body can metabolize easily and quickly. If you need a burst of energy in the afternoon, try reaching for a piece of fruit. In addition to the carbohydrates in fruits, they also contain essential vitamins, trace elements, and minerals. Dark blue fruits like blueberries and plums have high levels of antioxidants. To top it all off, fruit simply tastes good.
- Dairy products are one of the best sources of calcium for your body. Cheese (except cream cheese), yogurt, and milk are the best way to add this mineral to your diet. Calcium is important both for children and adults as it contributes to bone growth and strength. Dairy products also supply a good deal of protein and should be a part of every diet. A proper amount of calcium is also necessary for good heart health, and calcium from dietary sources can actually prevent kidney stones from forming.
You Are What You Eat
When you follow a diet that relies more on junk food, fast food, or foods that are greasy, sugary, or too salty, you are depriving your body of the basic elements it needs for good health. This lack of good food will show up on your face, and your complexion will become pasty and unhealthy looking. A poor diet will manifest itself from head to toe, starting with headaches and dull skin, down through your heart, lungs, and digestive system, to the bones and muscles in your legs and feet. Relying on a poor diet of this kind can also lead to obesity, which carries a laundry list of health problems of its own.