It's your body's exterior, so it's natural to approach healthy skin from the outside. Store shelves and cosmetics counters are full of everything from lotions to oils and cleaners aimed at helping you maintain or improve your appearance. But there's another way -- improving skin health from the inside via vitamins. Several vitamins have an effect on the epidermis, whether it's your skin's elasticity, smoothness or ability to repair itself.
- Vitamin A: Who doesn't want to prevent dry, flaky skin and acne? A regular does of vitamin A can help do just that. It's a vital component of skin repair, and it helps reduce those tiny lines and wrinkles that come with age and sun exposure. Most people don't need to take vitamin A in supplement form because it's readily available in foods like milk, eggs and healthy cereals.
- Biotin: This one not only helps you look good, but feel good, too. If you have dermatitis and find yourself scratching a lot, it may be because you're lacking this type of B vitamin. It's a necessary component of skin, and it's also one of the building blocks for hair and nail cells. Foods rich in biotin include rice, eggs, oatmeal and bananas.
- Vitamin C: It's found in many vegetables and also in citrus fruits. Vitamin C is believed to strengthen your immune system and help repair tissue. If you've damaged your skin by overexposing it to the sun, vitamin C can help. It's available in supplement form in addition to fruits and veggies.
- Vitamin E: Smooth skin -- that's one of the benefits vitamin E offers. It's found in foods such as green vegetables, nuts and eggs. Like vitamin C, it also plays a role in repairing sun damaged skin. Look at the components of many anti-aging lotions and you'll discover vitamin E.
- Vitamin K: It's an understatement to say that vitamin K is important. If you didn't have vitamin K in your system, then every scratch or cut would bleed continually. Your blood won't clot without it. Vegetables -- particularly leafy vegetables -- are an excellent source.
If you want smooth, youthful skin that can regenerate even under the worst conditions, maintain a healthy level of these vitamins. And if you'd like lots more information, visit the links and resources on the next page.