5 Essential Minerals Your Skin Craves
When it comes to skincare, the importance of essential minerals has always been overlooked, especially given the attention that vitamin C, E, B, and A receives. This is a grave omission because minerals are considered the “spark plugs” of the body. They facilitate crucial bodily functions through enzyme activities.
In addition, together with vitamins, minerals facilitate the transfer of best nutrients across the cell membranes. Minerals are essential in regulating tissue growth, provision of structural support, help in contraction and relaxation of muscles, aid in proper nerve conduction, and maintenance of body PH balance (1, 2, 3).
Just like vitamins, minerals help in the overall functioning of the body and are crucial in maintaining a healthy vibrant skin—and as we have always said, your skin is a representation of what goes on inside your body.
To achieve a perfect skin from the inside out, you need a variety of minerals (2). And the best way to obtain them is through ingestion of rich assortment of quality foods. Our dermatologists have compiled a list of minerals they believe will be super effective in giving you the radiant skin you have always desired.
Sulfur is one of the most abundant minerals in the human body (4)—it is present in every body’s cell but it’s highly concentrated in nails, hair, and skin. Sulfur deficiency will always mean problem, not only in your skin but your entire body.
According to the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, “Sulfur is great for healing skin wounds, clearing blemishes, minimizing pores, illuminating the skin, and fighting bacteria that might cause infections.”
Traditionally, dermatologists advised people to use topical skin care products with sulfur to fight dandruff, eczema, rosacea, dermatitis, and acne (5). But with the proven benefits of beauty from inside out, they are advising people to consume foods rich in these products such as fermented cruciferous veggies, kale, asparagus, Brussels sprout, onions, garlic, pastured eggs, and grass-fed pastured meats such as chicken and beef.
Obtained from dietary foods such as rhubarb, asparagus, celery, mango, cucumber, strawberries, garbanzo beans, green beans, and leeks—silica is considered one of the best nutrients for skin elasticity (6). It is responsible for your body’s connective tissues like cartilage, bones, nails, ligaments, hair, tendons, and muscles, and is very vital for the general health of your skin. It also contains healing properties meaning that it aids in skin recovery.
According to an article published in the European Journal of Dermatology in 2000, “Zinc is exceedingly efficient in fighting tenacious acne.” Meaning if you have a continuous acne breakout, you might be suffering from zinc deficiency.
Zinc is responsible for controlling the production of oil in your skin and it aids in hormonal balance to control (7)– hormonal imbalance is a known cause of acne breakout. Moreover, zinc is believed to have antioxidant properties that protect your skin from premature aging (7). You can obtain this essential minerals and nutrient from seeds, peas, soy foods, fortified cereals, sea vegetables, legumes, liver, and lean meat among others.
When it comes to super nutrients for your skin, selenium ranks up there with the best. Its importance lies in its capability to fight free radical that damages your skin cells (8). It is also responsible for maintaining moisture content and elasticity of your skin. Its deficiency, therefore, means that you will have a dry, scaly skin. Paired with vitamin E, selenium is a powerful antioxidant that helps boost glutathione production in your body—a compound that is excellent in decreasing and controlling acne (9).
Dietary sources of this important mineral include whole-wheat bread, brown rice, eggs, Brazil nuts, garlic, and seafood such as salmon and tuna; selenium is responsible for tissue elasticity. Nutritionists claim that Brazil nuts are the best sources, so it is important to have them in your kitchen in plenty.
Copper promotes the production of elastin and collagen (10)—two compounds that give your skin strength and elasticity. Besides, copper enhances the functionality of other antioxidants such as selenium to protection your skin and body against oxidative damages (9). It also works with a variety of vitamins and zinc to provide your body with enough elastin—ensuring that your skin remains flexible and supple. Dietary sources rich in copper include cashews, soybeans, mushrooms, and sunflower seeds.