When we think about our body, we usually think about look and feel, not so much about diamonds and minerals in skin care. We rarely think about all of the things that go into making the magic happen. We adorn ourselves with jewelry to reflect our personality made up of all of the magnificent metals and minerals that we also have on the inside and utilize to make our body function properly.
In addition to our bangles and baubles, we also want to apply a layer of minerals, like zinc oxide, on our skin to prevent sun damage. Similar to your over-the-counter sunscreen, your body utilizes metal oxides to protect skin from ultraviolet (UV) radiation. Of the eight minerals mentioned below, zinc, selenium, and copper are of utmost importance for healthy skin.
Function: Prevents acne. Helps to heal wounds. Needed for cell repair and production of DNA, RNA, and enzymes.
Food sources: Oysters, crab, red meat, liver, poultry, oats, quinoa, rye, nuts and seeds
A sunscreen like Cotz contains Titanium Dioxide 8% Zinc Oxide 3.8% which are UVA/UVB physical sunscreens, substantially reflecting light and repairing damage.
Function: Preserves elasticity of tissue. Prevents damage to DNA and cell membranes from UV radiation and oxygen radicals, including sunburns and tanning. It is an important antioxidant and deficiency may lead to premature aging.
Food sources: Whole grains, fish, red meat, eggs, brazil nuts, Swiss chard
Function: Improves the wound healing process. Resides in keratinocytes. Offers anti-inflammatory protection. Stimulates collagen and elastin formation.
Food sources: Oysters, liver, oats, nuts, shiitake mushrooms, sesame seeds
Function: Builds and maintains bones and teeth. A deficiency is associated with eczema and brittle nails. Calcium also plays a role in maintaining skin hydration and regulating UV-blocking pigmentation.
Food sources: Kale, almonds, parsley, dairy, dried figs, sesame seeds
Shelley Skin Care source: Brighten Up Bar contains Calcium Ascorbate which is a salt of ascorbic acid (Vitamin C). This potent antioxidant is chemically stable and quickly absorbed into the skin.
Function: Promotes oxygenation of blood, a healthy immune system, and energy production. Skin, your body’s largest organ, needs a constant supply of oxygen to remain healthy. Excess iron, however, can increase pigmentation, leading to dark spots.
Food sources: Clams, liver, red meat, shrimp, beans, spinach
Function: Balances and distributes water throughout the body which keeps the skin moist.
Food sources: Avocado, lima beans, potatoes, tomatoes, bananas, cantaloupe, peaches
Silicon – Silica
Function: Promotes tissue firmness. Strengthens hair, skin and nails. Maintains skin elasticity. Prevents free radical damage.
Food sources: Whole, unrefined grains
Function: On skin, sulfur provides exfoliative and antibacterial effects. It acts by drying off the top layer of skin, allowing it to be easily removed from clogged pores. Sulfur inhibits the growth of P. acnes, further lessening inflammation. High concentrations of sulfur are found in joints, hair, skin, and nails.
Food sources: Egg yolks, beans, whole grains, garlic, onions, brussels sprouts, cabbage
The next time you’re choosing jewelry for a night out, think about how many of those metals and minerals you can find on the restaurant menu.
For more information on healthy eating for good skin, check out my post called Better Skin Starts with Better Food.