Are you looking for a way to clear acne, fade discoloration, brighten dull skin, or even out your skin tone? Are you tired of having to use layers of makeup to hide imperfections? Do you wish your skin was always bright, clear, smooth and glowing?
The answer is clean eating for clear skin.
While nourishing your skin from the outside with natural skin care products is important, beautiful skin really starts from within, because what you eat eventually shows up on your face.
If you’re wondering what exactly is clean eating and how it will help your skin, then you’ll love this official clean eating meal plan for clear skin.
Adult acne, dull skin, dry patches, oily skin, puffiness, premature wrinkles and fine lines are generally symptoms of unhealthy lifestyle choices. And more specifically, it’s usually a result of what we choose to eat.
Now that’s not news we like to hear.
Our first thoughts are to go to the dermatologist, get an expensive facial, or buy the best natural skin care products we can find in an effort to “fix” our skin issues.
But that often leaves us with the same skin issues (or worse!) and less money in our bank accounts. I don’t need to tell you that this is not the answer.
So what is the answer?
It’s clean eating for clear skin.
Good skin care products alone are not enough. Feeding your body the healthy and nutritious foods it was designed to have encourages healing from the inside. Then by cleansing and treating your skin with natural, non-toxic skin care products, you’ll boost your skin’s healing abilities from the outside in.
The result of this dual approach is clear, radiant, gorgeous skin.
So let’s get started with the clean eating plan, you say? Well, we’d better answer a few questions first.
Common questions about clean eating for clear skin
When it comes to the topic of clean eating, there can be some confusion. Is it just another diet, like Keto or Paleo? Is it a strict eating plan filled with dos and don’ts? Does it mean I eat only raw vegetables and fruits? It’s best we clear up any confusion before discussing the plan:
1. What exactly is clean eating?
Clean eating isn’t a diet, and it’s not simply a list of foods to eat or avoid. Clean eating is a perspective–a concept of living that encourages you to make better food and lifestyle choices.
The basis of eating clean and living clean is to:
- Fill your plate with real, whole, plant-based foods–such as vegetables, fruits, high-protein grains, plant-based proteins, and healthy fats. These foods will serve as the primary foods in your diet.
- Avoid highly-processed or packaged foods, as well as artificial ingredients, such as certain preservatives and additives.
- Eat regular, balanced meals along with healthy snacks that nourish your body. Prepare foods at home more often and pack home cooked meals for times away. When you do have to eat out, choose healthy and nutritious plant-based meals.
- Stay active during the day with exercise and other physical activity. Then get adequate sleep each night to help the body repair and rejuvenate.
- Stay hydrated by drinking the recommended amount of water daily, which is roughly about 64 ounces for most.
2. Will eating clean help my skin?
You’ve most likely heard the term, “you are what you eat.” Well, this expression may be truer than you think. There are some foods which promote healthy skin and other foods that negatively affect it. Making poor choices in what you eat will show up later on your skin.
According to Dr. Jessica Wu, dermatologist and creator of Dr. Jessica Wu Skincare, what you eat is as important as the products you apply on your skin. “Foods get digested and broken down into vitamins, minerals and amino acids that your body can use to build healthy skin.”
Clean eating for clear skin is a real concept. By feeding your body the healthy foods it needs (like the foods listed in this post on foods to eat for clear skin), you promote hydrated, healthy, glowing skin.
3. Does clean eating clear acne?
We do know that poor food choices can result in acne. Dr. Frank Lipman, founder of the Eleven Eleven Wellness Center, says, “Your skin is your largest organ and a window into what’s going on inside your body. Poor food choices that cause inflammation can lead to numerous skin issues. Processed foods break down quickly and turn to sugar, causing a spike in insulin. Scientists have found that more insulin means more acne!”
He goes on to say, “Processed foods are also made with processed, man-made oils, such as canola oil, soybean oil, and other ‘vegetable oils,’ which are pro-inflammatory. And more inflammation means more acne.” So, adapting a diet free from foods that cause inflammation can help fight and prevent acne.
4. What foods help clear skin?
If it’s true that the unhealthy foods you eat eventually show up as problems on your skin, then shouldn’t the reverse be true?
Eating can be a powerful healer of skin conditions. But, eating what? There are so many different diets and eating plans out there, how do you know which one works?
I start by looking at what is working. Where is there a group of people who are healthy and whose skin is clear and glowing?
According to Dr. John McDougall, studies done on people living on their native diet–usually low fat-diets, based on starches, vegetables, and fruits – have found these people have little or no acne. And their skin is healthy and radiant.
Eating plant-based, whole foods will nourish the body and help clear the skin. Foods you’ll want to add to your diet include:
- vegetables (consume raw salads as well as properly cooked veggies)
- vegetable juices (juicing is a good way to get a variety of nutrients our bodies require in a highly absorbable form).
- fresh fruits
- whole grains (avoiding any that cause allergic reactions or inflammation in your body)
- seeds and nuts (on a limited basis)
- omega-3 fatty acids (found in plant foods like chia seeds, flaxseeds and walnuts)
- plant-based milk substitutes (like rice, soy, and almond)
5. What foods should I avoid for clear skin?
To have consistently clear and radiant skin, you’ll have to leave some foods alone—they really just aren’t your friend. Foods to avoid include:
- animal foods, such as meat, poultry, fish or shellfish
- dairy (including eggs, milk, cheese, butter or margarine)
- processed and refined foods, such as white flour, bread and pasta (eat whole grains instead)
- added (processed) sugars in any form (small amounts of natural sugars are fine)
- vegetable oils
- preservatives and additives
Clean Eating for Clear Skin Resources
The best way to start eating clean is to do your research. Learning which foods to eat is a good starting place. Then finding good recipes using those foods will help you plan meals that encourage clear skin. Here are some of my favorite resources for planning, preparing and storing clean, plant-based meals:
Books on Clean Eating
This was one of the first books I read when starting my plant-based, whole foods diet. I was vegetarian before, but was still experiencing hormonal breakouts, extra-oily skin and weight gain. I followed The McDougall Program’s 10-day at-home program (I stretched it to 14 days) and saw the acne clear from my face and my oily skin “magically” dry up. But a bonus benefit was that I lost 12 pounds as well! ==> Learn More
The Starch Solution was the second book on plant-based, whole foods diets that helped me on my journey. It helped me understand how important starches are in a healthy body, healthy skin and in weight loss. The book teaches that “by fueling your body primarily with carbohydrates rather than proteins and fats, you will feel satisfied, boost energy, and look and feel your best.” ==> Learn More
This 4-week meal plan makeover helped me discover how delicious clean eating could be. It reveals how following a plant-based, whole foods diet can not only to prevent and often reverse disease, but deliver clear skin as well. Forks Over Knives includes 100 simple recipes and a 28-day eating guide to help you transition to the healthiest way of eating. Even my kids love the recipes. ==> Learn More
One of the first posts on this blog was on how to clear acne fast and for good. It features a video about twin sisters who battled crippling acne which was affecting their career. Through research, they discovered how clean eating could help them get rid of acne for good. They later wrote the book The Clear Skin Diet to document their journey to flawless, glowing skin. ==> Learn More
Crazy Sexy Juice is one of my favorite books for juice recipes. It features over 100 simple juice and smoothie recipes and all of the ones I’ve tried tasted delicious. It also contains a 3-day cleanse to help detox and energize your body. And one of the benefits of juicing while eating clean is clear, glowing skin. ==> Learn More
Clean Eating Kitchen Helps
No clear skin diet plan is complete without kitchen tools. From blenders, to juicers, to meal prep containers, these tools will help make your transition to clean eating easier and more efficient.
Meal planning is the key to sticking with any healthy eating plan. These Freshware 3-compartment meal prep containers are BPA free, stackable, and microwave, dishwasher, and freezer safe. By planning ahead you’ll save yourself time and help reduce the risk of getting off track. ==> Learn More
Make preparing your clean eating for clear skin meals easier with a Vitamix blender. From smoothies to soups and everything in between, these professional-grade blenders will make your life so much easier.
Wanting to make those clear skin-promoting green juices? You’ll need a good juicer to get this done. There are so many on the market, it can be hard to decide which is the best. Some things to consider are the juice yield, ease of cleaning and noise level. Here is a guide to the best juicers on the market. I’ve tried several and my personal favorite “best value” juicer is the Hamilton Beach Juicer. ==> Learn More
How to get clear skin by eating clean
To get clear skin from the inside out, you need to feed your body the right foods. For instance, your skin needs collagen which provides elasticity. Dietary sources of collagen include dark green leafy vegetables, red veggies and berries, among others.
To help prevent acne, your skin needs Omega-3 fatty acids which can be found in flaxseeds, walnuts and dark green leafy vegetables. Also, keeping the skin well-hydrated is important to flush out unwanted toxins.
So just how do you put all of this together in a way that’s easy to follow? I’ve got you covered with my Clean Eating for Clear Skin Starter Kit.
Clean Eating for Clear Skin Starter Kit
This starter kit contains everything you’ll need to begin eating clean and to reveal clear, glowing gorgeous skin.
In this Clean Eating for Clear Skin Starter Kit you’ll get:
- Start your clean eating journey with this 35+ page Clean Eating Guide, including 15 delicious clean eating recipes that are simple and easy to make.
- Know what to eat, when with the 5-day clean eating meal plan to help jump start your transition.
- Printable listing of best clean foods to eat and those to avoid.
- Includes a bonus guide for your skin–DIY skin care recipes for a cleanser, toner, serum, and moisturizer. These recipes are formulated to work with your clean eating plan to deliver clear, healthy skin.