Laser treatments and creams are all the rage when it comes to dealing with stretch marks, but did you know that you can actually prevent them from showing up without breaking the bank? It all starts with your diet. They say you are what you eat, and this couldn’t be truer even for stretch marks. Eating the right foods plays a huge role in keeping those nasty lines at bay. Not sure about what foods to eat to prevent stretch marks? These protein-rich and nutrient-dense foods will surely not disappoint!
Best Foods to Eat For Stretch Marks
Collagen inducing foods such as legumes should be number one on your list when it comes to preventing stretch marks. Stretch marks are a result of brittle skin, which happens when collagen is reduced through exposure to harmful rays of the sun or directly through the natural process of aging. Loss of collagen means your skin becomes less elastic, making it unlikely to return to its original state when stretched during pregnancy or weight change. To keep your skin flexible, load up on protein-rich and low- fat foods such as beans, lentils, hummus, and peas.
- Lean proteins
Turkey, Chicken, lentils, fish, and egg whites are a great source of protein, which is very important in maintaining your skin’s elasticity. The more elastic your skin is the fewer chances of developing stretch marks. When choosing what fish to consume, go for those that are rich in Omega-3 Fatty acids like sardines and salmon. Omega-3 fatty acids promote skin repair by moisturizing and minimizing inflammation caused by stretch marks.
Don’t forget to hydrate! Keeping yourself hydrated is just as important as keeping your skin moisturized to prevent stretch marks. The recommended daily serving in ounces is equivalent to at least half of your weight in pounds.
We get it. Drinking a lot of water may come as a challenge for most of us. Why not keep it fun by trying out different detox water recipes to keep yourself on track? Try to avoid drinks that will dehydrate you, such as coffee, soda, alcohol, and drinks with a lot of sugar. Sugar can damage collagen protein while caffeine is a diuretic that may strip your skin off of moisture, making it less elastic and dry. According to The Cleveland Clinic, ” beverages with caffeine will increase your risk for stretch marks”. If you’re one to drink several cups of coffee in a day, make sure to drink as much water or more.
Veggies can do so many wonders, not just for your health but also for your skin. Aside from being a great source of vitamin E, vegetables are a great source of lutein, an antioxidant that increases hydration and elasticity in your skin. It also helps protects your skin from the harmful UV rays that result in loss of collagen. This can be found mostly in green leafy vegetables such as cabbage, spinach, broccoli, kale, and lettuce.
Red and orange vegetables such as tomatoes, red pepper, red onions, pumpkin, sweet potatoes, and carrots are a great source of vitamin A which is essential for the formation of new skin cells. Vitamin A is also found in fruits such as mangoes and melons.
Remember, stretch marks are a result of brittle skin caused by factors like sun damage, so do yourself a favor and get your regular dose of tomatoes.
Vegetables with high water content like cucumber are also recommended to keep us hydrated from within. Hydrating foods help flush out toxins and keep the skin elastic so that you’re less likely to develop stretch marks.
- Fruits and Berries
Get your dose of vitamins A, C, and E in fruits. Vitamins are essential to keep stretch marks out of sight. Vitamin C supports the production of collagen in our skin while vitamin A aids in skin cell renewal – offering both preventive and restorative solutions. Vitamin E keeps your skin hydrated and reduce the appearance of scars.
Citrus fruits such as oranges, grapefruits, and lemons contain nutrients that not only prevent but also help reduce the appearance of stretch marks. They are a rich source of Vitamin C, which is vital for the development of collagen in your skin and antioxidants that help restore damaged cells.
Another great source of vitamin C is berries. Did you know that eating just one cup of strawberry gives you 50% more of your recommended daily intake of vitamin C? This superfood is also known to have the highest amount of antioxidants, including ellagic acid, which prevents collagen break down in sun-damaged skin. You can easily incorporate this into your diet by simply adding goji berries, strawberries, blackberries, cherries, and blueberries to your overnight oats or Greek yogurt!
- Healthy Fats
While a lot of people try to avoid eating fats, it’s good for you (the healthy unsaturated ones, of course!). Healthy fats nourish the skin and fight stretch marks being an excellent source of vitamins D and E. Some of our favorites include avocados, salmon, olive oil, butter, coconut oil, and sunflower oil. Unsaturated fats can keep skin soft and smooth. Try eating a quarter of an avocado each day, and you will see results. If you want to load up on vitamin D, fish oil is considered to be one of the richest sources.
Nuts are a rich source of vitamin E and fatty acids essential to improving your skin’s elasticity as well as Zinc, which is crucial for collagen production and skin repair. So the next time you’re craving for snacks, skip the chips and go for peanuts, walnuts, cashew, pecan, almonds, and flax seeds instead! Just eat it in moderation and go for unsalted ones to avoid skin puffiness and swelling. Nut butter and nut milk are also a fun way to get your daily dose of Zinc.