Nutrients to Nourish Your Skin

Nutrients to Nourish Your Skin

Your skin is the largest organ in your body and the first thing you see when you look in the mirror. Its main purpose is to act as a barrier between you and potential threats around you. But it’s also nice to have healthy, radiant skin that you can feel good about. 

One of the best things you can do to help your skin thrive is to fuel it with a nutritious diet. Let’s examine some of the key nutrients for healthy skin and where you can find them.

Key Nutrients for Healthy Skin

The best way to support your skin health through food is by eating a diet made up of an array of nutrient-dense foods. This will provide an abundance of skin-boosting nutrients, like the ones below. 

Vitamin C

Vitamin C is essential for the production of collagen, the most abundant protein in your body. It also plays a role in immune function. 

As an antioxidant, vitamin C helps protect your cells from free radical damage — like the effects of sun exposure. Vitamin C and vitamin E work together to protect your skin, especially as you get older.1 Normal, healthy skin contains high amounts of vitamin C.2

Vitamin C is found in a variety of fruits and vegetables. Some of the best sources include citrus fruits, potatoes, broccoli, red peppers, and berries. 

Vitamin E

Vitamin E is a fat-soluble antioxidant with a long history of use for protecting skin health.3 It helps improve skin hydration and is involved in the normal inflammatory response.4 Vitamin E works together with vitamin C to protect the skin from UVA and UVB light damage.5

Find vitamin E in nuts and seeds as well as soybeans, vegetable oils, wheat, and leafy green vegetables. 

Omega-3 Fatty Acids

Omega-3 fats include alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA). They have been found to help promote skin barrier function and prevent irritants from entering that can cause inflammation. Furthermore, some studies have suggested that omega-3s have a protective effect against UV damage.6 

Some of the best sources of omega-3 fats are fatty fish, like salmon, mackerel, and tuna. You can find ALA, the precursor to EPA and DHA, in plant foods like ground flax seed, but the conversion rate to EPA and DHA is low.7

It’s best to find direct sources of EPA and DHA, like fish or fish oil. If you don’t consume seafood, plant-based algal oil supplements are also a good option. 


Zinc is an essential trace mineral involved in hundreds of biological processes, including tissue repair and maintenance. Getting enough zinc is also important for wound healing.8,9

Find zinc in foods like seeds, beans, peas, lentils, seafood, whole grains, wheat germ, fortified cereals, and eggs. 


Selenium is an essential trace mineral and antioxidant important for protecting the skin from external stressors, like UV light, pollutants, and chemicals.10 Some studies have found that having enough selenium available in the body is associated with a reduced risk of certain skin conditions.10

Some of the best places to find selenium include seeds, poultry, whole grains, seafood, mushrooms, legumes, oatmeals, Brazil nuts, and bananas. 

Supplements for Skin Health

If you don’t think you’re getting enough of these nutrients for skin health in your diet, you might consider adding certain supplements to your routine. 

For example, Naturelo Vitamin C with Acerola Cherries & Citrus Bioflavonoids provides 500 mg of vitamin C with 45 mg of citrus bioflavonoids. Or you might consider a multivitamin that combines an array of skin-supporting vitamins and minerals. 

Nourishing Your Skin From Within

You only get one skin for life — so do what you can to take care of it now. With a combination of healthy foods and supplements where needed, you can ensure that your skin is “soaking up” a variety of important nutrients. Consider where you can add more vitamins C and E, zinc, selenium, and omega-3s as a dietary step toward healthier skin. 


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  7. Omega-3 Fatty Acids: Health Professional Fact Sheet. Office of Dietary Supplements. Updated 15 Feb 2023. Available: 
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  10. Jobeili L, Rousselle P, Béal D, et al. Selenium preserves keratinocyte stemness and delays senescence by maintaining epidermal adhesion. Aging (Albany NY). 2017;9(11):2302-2315. doi:10.18632/aging.101322
  11. Lv J, Ai P, Lei S, Zhou F, Chen S, Zhang Y. Selenium levels and skin diseases: systematic review and meta-analysis. J Trace Elem Med Biol. 2020;62:126548. doi:10.1016/j.jtemb.2020.126548