I'm A Holistic Dermatologist & This Is My Go-To Dinner For Glowing Skin
At this point, we've drilled in how the foods you eat affect your skin, no matter your complexion concerns. Facing dryness and flakes? You'll want to up your intake of water-dense, high-fat snacks. Oiliness and acne? You might want to take a breather from foods with a high glycemic index.
So when board-certified dermatologist Whitney Bowe, M.D., came on the mindbodygreen podcast to discuss her all-time favorite compilation for glowing skin, we were scribbling down notes. Below, find this derm's go-to dinner menu.
An integrative dermatologist's skin-healthy dinner.
Let's build Bowe's plate, shall we?
- Salmon: The star of Bowe's dinnerplate happens to be wild-caught, omega-3-rich salmon, perfect for improving and protecting the skin1. "[Salmon also has] some astaxanthin, which gives it that beautiful color and is a potent antioxidant," she notes. In fact, astaxanthin has such impressive antioxidant and anti-inflammatory2 effects that it's been crowned "King of the Carotenoids." Final note: Don't forget about the salmon skin! According to Bowe, the skin is packed with collagen (which helps keep your skin firm and taut). One animal study even showed that supplementing with fish-skin-derived collagen peptides improved skin elasticity and sebum production3.
- Roasted veggies: Specifically, Bowe's partial to broccoli and asparagus: "Broccoli is great for vitamin C, and asparagus is a prebiotic," she notes. Prebiotics are top-notch for skin health—as your skin is very much connected to your gut (thank you, gut-skin axis), any food that fortifies your gut is also great for skin. Perhaps sauté the bunch with some garlic and onions, both of which also fall under the prebiotic-rich foods list.
- Olive oil: To punch up those omega-3s further, she suggests drizzling olive oil over the veggies. "Extra-virgin olive oil is great for the skin," she notes (avocado oil works, too). Pro tip: It can be super moisturizing when you apply it topically as well.
- Dark chocolate: After the meal, Bowe likes to nibble on antioxidant-rich dark chocolate, as their polyphenols can help neutralize free radicals and fight oxidative stress. Just make sure it's organic, raw dark chocolate, as that means the beans are fermented—which is also simultaneously great for the gut.
There are plenty of other skin-healthy foods to add to your grocery list (find some more here), but refer back to this derm's dinner the next time you're looking for a fatty-acid- and antioxidant-rich meal. It won't necessarily transform your skin overnight (glowing skin requires a lot more than one night of salmon and veggies, sigh), but it never hurts to get your fill of skin-healthy nutrients.
Jamie Schneider is the Beauty & Wellness Editor at mindbodygreen. She has a B.A. in Organizational Studies and English from the University of Michigan, and her work has appeared in Coveteur, The Chill Times, and Wyld Skincare. In her role at mbg, she reports on everything from the top beauty industry trends, to the gut-skin connection and the microbiome, to the latest expert makeup hacks. She currently lives in New York City.