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The Best Vegetarian Diets for Glowing Skin

author image Cathleen Anderson
Residing in upstate New York, Cathleen Anderson is a vegetarian freelancer who has been writing since 1994. She holds a bachelor's degree in psychology from State University of New York, Potsdam and a master's degree in counseling from SUNY, Oswego. Anderson is a licensed, nationally certified counselor who works in an emergency department focusing on the mental and physical health of her patients.
The Best Vegetarian Diets for Glowing Skin
Some vegetarian diets are good for the skin. Photo Credit Martin Poole/Digital Vision/Getty Images

According to the American Dietetic Association, a well-balanced vegetarian diet may help prevent a host of health problems. Many foods that are good for your skin are best for overall health, as well. Vegetarian diets as a whole provide considerable benefits to the skin and fall into several categories: vegan, which allows no animal products, lactovegetarian, ovovegetarian and lacto-ovovegetarian. Because it includes dairy and eggs, the lacto-ovovegetarian diet provides the widest choice of skin-healthy foods.

Sweet Potatoes

The Best Vegetarian Diets for Glowing Skin
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Deeply hued vegetables such as the sweet potato provide beta-carotene, the predecessor of vitamin A, and an essential nutrient for a radiant complexion. Beta-carotene is a powerful antioxidant that gives vegetables their vibrant colors and protects you from the effects of sun exposure. Sweet potato skins are safe to eat and add a healthy dose of fiber to your diet, just another excellent reason to add this tasty vegetable to your diet.


The Best Vegetarian Diets for Glowing Skin
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Berries are truly nature's powerhouses. Blueberries, strawberries, blackberries and cranberries are all near perfect foods for glowing skin due to their high content of antioxidants. Kiwi is a flavorful fruit containing huge amounts of vitamin C. Vitamin C is crucial to retaining collagen, which, in turn, helps keep skin firm and supple. Cantaloupe, plums, tomatoes and citrus fruits also have plenty of vitamins A and C, while mangoes pack more than 80 percent of the daily requirement for vitamin A, necessary for maintaining healthy skin cells.


The Best Vegetarian Diets for Glowing Skin
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Almonds are rich in vitamin E, known for keeping skin lubricated. Vitamin E and other powerful antioxidants in almonds help to combat the effects of aging and damage to the skin over time. Almonds are also a good source of calcium, phosphorous, iron and magnesium, as well as zinc, selenium, copper and niacin; all are important to skin health. Almonds may be consumed raw or toasted as a snack, or sprinkled on a salad as a garnish. Another way to get almond nutrition is by drinking almond milk.


The Best Vegetarian Diets for Glowing Skin
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Mushrooms are a fungus but are most often referred to as a vegetable. Mushrooms have a long history of medicinal uses. They are a great source of an important B vitamin, riboflavin, also known as B2. Riboflavin's job is to repair damaged tissue as well as keep it healthy. Vitamin B2 is vital to the body when recovering from wounds to the skin, such as surgery or burns. It is also helpful for blemishes caused by rosacea, a common skin ailment that causes redness and blotches to the face.

Low-Fat Yogurt and Dairy

The Best Vegetarian Diets for Glowing Skin
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Dairy is one of the best sources of vitamin A, a highly important component in skin health. Low-fat yogurt has the added benefit of acidophilus, a live bacteria culture that contributes to intestinal well-being and promotes overall good health. Other low-fat dairy products like skim milk, mozzarella and cottage cheese contain many key nutrients, including calcium, magnesium, folate, and vitamins A, E and D.


The Best Vegetarian Diets for Glowing Skin
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Incorporate eggs into your diet for a boost in quality protein. Eggs provide zinc, a mineral that aids in the production of collagen, a fibrous protein vital to healthy skin. Zinc also promotes a clear complexion. Eggs provide vitamin B12, necessary for nourishing red blood cells and preventing pernicious anemia. Without enough B12, your skin will appear pale and unhealthy.

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