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How Does Diet Affect Your Physical Appearance?

author image Barbara Sorensen
In 1995 Barbara Sorensen began writing and editing for the quarterly magazine, "Winds of Change." She freelances for "The Tribal College Journal" and "SACNAS News." Sorensen has a Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of Iowa.
How Does Diet Affect Your Physical Appearance?
Healthy food equals healthy bodies. Photo Credit fruits closeup 2 image by .shock from <a href='http://www.fotolia.com'>Fotolia.com</a>

The consequences of what you put into your body eventually breaks through to the outside and affects your physical appearance. The most obvious physical factors are weight and skin. These are the aspects that are noticed first. If you are eating predominantly fast food on a regular basis, you will put on weight. Likewise, your skin will probably reflect the amount of grease and saturated fats you have been consuming. The key to looking well is eating well.


How Does Diet Affect Your Physical Appearance?
Healthy foods can improve the appearance of your skin. Photo Credit healthy foods image by Steve Lovegrove from <a href='http://www.fotolia.com'>Fotolia.com</a>

Foods that are good for body weight seem to be equally good for skin appearance. Foods that help your skin look fresh and healthy include carrots, apricots, yellow and orange fruits and vegetables, blueberries, spinach, tomatoes, beans, peas and lentils, fish, nuts, and a variety of green, leafy vegetables, according to MayoClinic.com.


How Does Diet Affect Your Physical Appearance?
No one particular food will make your skin look healthy. Photo Credit rest from exercising image by Paul Moore from <a href='http://www.fotolia.com'>Fotolia.com</a>

It's important to note there usually isn't just one particular food that will make your skin look bad, unless you have an allergy to it. But consumption of foods high in sugar, salt and fat can exacerbate already irritated skin. Eating a healthy diet will boost your immune system, which in turn will enable your body to fight infections that may or may not affect your skin.


How Does Diet Affect Your Physical Appearance?
Hydrate often with fresh water. Photo Credit silhouette of woman drinking water image by millann from <a href='http://www.fotolia.com'>Fotolia.com</a>

Drinking plenty of water is one easy way to ward off many illnesses, flush your system and keep your skin looking fresh and healthy. Since so many men and women exercise strenuously, it's critical they keep themselves hydrated. Four to five pints of water a day is a good rule of thumb. Plain water is recommended, although you can supplement with delicately infused water. Drinks to avoid are those that dehydrate you, like coffee, tea and soda pop, most of which contain caffeine.


How Does Diet Affect Your Physical Appearance?
Teenage girls often suffer from poor body image. Photo Credit asian girl with her pet dog (focus is on the girl). image by Gina Smith from <a href='http://www.fotolia.com'>Fotolia.com</a>

When discussing diet and appearance, it's necessary to consider the issue of body image, especially the body image teenage girls often have of themselves. It's true our country has a problem with obesity and overeating. But it's equally true teenage girls suffer from poor body image, which can result in anorexia and bulimia. Advertising pummels young women with unnatural weight images, while at the same time encouraging them to eat fast food. A sensible diet to achieve a sensible appearance is often overlooked. No matter what you eat, you can't change your natural body type. Healthy bodies come in all shapes and sizes.


How Does Diet Affect Your Physical Appearance?
Young people should find others who have healthy body images to hang out with. Photo Credit young people on the beach image by Galina Barskaya from <a href='http://www.fotolia.com'>Fotolia.com</a>

To help young men and women develop a practical body image, Brown University's Student Health Services suggests they spend time with friends who have a healthy relationship with food, activity and their bodies. A diet can either help or hinder physical appearance, depending on how you use it. Being sensible with diet means eating fresh, whole foods that are low in sugar, salt, and fat and drinking plenty of water.

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