Unexpected food choices for clear skin

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The old adage "You are what you eat" is popular for a reason. What you put on your plate...

The old adage "You are what you eat" is popular for a reason. What you put on your plate affects your overall health, including your complexion. If you want clear skin, eat foods that nourish, hydrate and strengthen your largest body organ. Here's how to get healthy skin!

Snack on nuts

Almonds, cashews, peanuts, pistachios and walnuts are filled with omega-3 fatty acids, which help reduce fine lines and wrinkles. Add some pecans to your favorite foods, and you'll have great, clear skin in no time! They're delicious when ground up and used to crust fish. Or throw in a serving of your favorite nuts in smoothies, salads and sauces.

Natural hydration

You've heard that drinking eight glasses of water a day is a good way to stay hydrated and nourish your skin, but did you know you can bump up your moisture intake by adding a few extras to your next meal? Munch on fresh watermelon in lieu of a sugary dessert or add cucumbers to a sandwich for extra water-saturated nourishment. Pomegranate seeds are also rich in moisture. Use them to add crunch to a salad.

Enjoy some sweets

According to Fitness Magazine, the flavonols in dark chocolate with at least 70 percent cacao can actually improve your skin. These antioxidants firm the skin and make it more supple, an added bonus when you're striving for clear skin. Just limit yourself to a few ounces a day as a snack.

Beans for health

Whether you go with pinto, red, kidney or navy, you should eat your beans. These lean protein powerhouses are rich in zinc, which aids in collagen formation and keeps the skin plump. Collagen production is especially important for those looking to rebuild skin after an acne treatment or microdermabrasion. Make a three-bean salad with dinner tonight or whip up a pot of chili over the weekend!

Tomatoes and skin care

Add tomatoes to your menu every chance you get. According to Women's Health magazine, the lycopene in the juicy fruit boosts the antioxidant level in the skin, which wards off skin breakdown and wrinkling. During the summer, snack on tomato salsa or a cool bowl of gazpacho. During cool weather, enjoy pasta sauces and creamy tomato-basil soup.

Have you talked with a dermatologist in Atlanta yet? These specialized skin doctors can help you choose healthy, skin-loving foods to improve your complexion.

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