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Is Going Vegan Good For Your Skin? (Hint: It Is!)

Is Going Vegan Good For Your Skin? (Hint: It Is!)

You are what you eat. We’ve all heard the saying—and it turns out that there’s a heck of a lot of truth behind it. 

Our diets play an enormous role in our overall health—our skin, yes, but also our other organs, our energy levels, even the way we think and feel. 

A vegan diet can do wonders for your health since plant foods—especially whole foods like veggies, fruits, and whole grains—contain a ton of vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients that are crucial for maintaining good health. 

But—and this is a major but—not all vegan diets are created equal. Vegans who  eat predominantly processed, packaged foods (hello, French fries, potato chips, burgers, and cookies!) will not glean the same benefits as those who follow a whole-foods plant-based diet. It’s important to pay attention to what you eat and see what makes you feel and look your best. 

Benefits of a plant-based diet on skin

Could cutting out animal products really be that great for skin? The answer is: it sure can be! 

Many people who have made the switch to a plant-based diet report visible, and lasting, improvements to their skin. Some people notice pretty significant changes in very short periods—one woman tossed her foundation after a matter of weeks! 

This is because the health of our skin, our body’s largest organ, is deeply impacted by diet. The foods we eat can be the root cause of acne and other annoying conditions (more on the acne-diet connection later). Animal products on their own—think steak or a fillet of fish—can be rife with toxins, such as antibiotics and environmental pollutants. Highly refined, processed animal foods (hot dogs, jerky, ice cream, and so much more) can contain added sugars and are often filled with artificial chemicals to provide color, flavor, and preserve the shelf-life. Each of these chemicals and additives can give your skin mega problems. 

But just as it’s important to avoid foods that will cause problems, it’s equally important to load up on nutritious items that will deliver everything your skin needs to shine its brightest. Foods such as avocados, red and yellow bell peppers, broccoli, walnuts, sunflower seeds, and green tea are all very good sources of antioxidants, vitamins, and other nutrients that will help build collagen, protect against sun damage, keep your skin supple and moisturized, and so many other benefits. 

As you explore your journey towards veganism, or if you’re already vegan and curious to learn how you can optimize for glowing skin, keep in mind that there are certain vitamins and minerals vegans need to supplement. Vitamins like B12 and minerals such as calcium are mostly found in animal products—but taking a supplement regularly can take care of all your micronutrient needs.

Vegan diet and acne

Acne can be stubborn, and making matters even more frustrating is how tricky it can be to correctly diagnose the underlying causes. 

But if you’re battling with these unsightly bumps and blemishes, and if you drink a lot of milk, then you may want to consider ditching dairy ASAP. 

Milk has been called “nature’s perfect food” for causing acne—need we say any more?! The hormones and steroids present in cows' milk, which are designed to help calves grow, can cause havoc on our already-delicately balanced hormonal systems and give rise to acne. 

The good news is that there are tons of vegan (and very authentic!) options for your cereal, morning coffee, and everything in between. So we suggest loading up on oat, almond, cashew, macadamia, or other nut milks and see if that clears up your skin. 

Other benefits of a vegan diet   

If you need a few more reasons to think about making the switch to a vegan diet, well, we’ve you covered there! Here are a few of our fave reasons to check out the plant-based lifestyle. 

Vegan glow

The vegan glow is at times considered a mere myth, an urban legend, something often talked about but not real. 

So it might amaze you to know that the vegan glow is real, and is something you can achieve on your own—no summoning spells or wishful thinking required! 

The vegan glow refers to the healthy, radiant skin that so many vegans seem to have. Getting the glow can actually be pretty simple: it all comes down to eating a robust variety of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, and having these be your predominant diet. 

A whole-foods, plant-based diet can do two things to make you glow from the inside out: first, it provides ample nutrition to your body and your skin—all those yummy vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that your body craves. 

But the vegan glow is also a result of there being fewer toxins to combat. Your body is constantly working to eject toxins, whether those that you eat, drink, or even that you breathe in (you gotta love air pollution!). The primary detoxifying organs in our body include the liver and kidneys, but also, crucially, your skin (and yeah—acne can be your body ejecting toxins!).

So when you cut out a diet rich in animal products and heavily processed foods, you are doing your body a major solid by lessening the need to detoxify. So not only will your skin be more nourished, you’ll detox less through your skin, and, voila!—there’s the magic formula for that magical vegan glow!

Vegan diet and hair 

Like all other parts of our bodies, our hair needs proper nutrition to really shine. That’s why a vegan diet composed of healthy whole foods, combined with taking supplements regularly (namely B12, vitamin D, and omega-3 fatty acids, biotin, and iron) will help your hair look its best.

Many people report that hair is shinier, thicker, and overall healthier-looking after making the switch. 

Going vegan for animals

Okay, so this one isn’t about your body, but it’s still pretty important, if you ask us. These days, virtually all of the animal products you consume—whether meat, dairy, or eggs—comes from industrial farms, also known as factory farms. These places are pretty much hell on earth—and no, that’s not an exaggeration. 

Factory farms aim to lower the costs of production by keeping thousands of animals within extremely tight confines. It turns out that freedom of movement does have a price, and it is a price that farmed animals pay in factory farms. The hens who lay eggs in conventional egg factories are given the same amount of space as a piece of lined paper; they can’t stretch their wings out or their necks up without hitting the sides of their cage or other hens. Female pigs who are bred to produce offspring for pork farms are kept in gestation crates for months on end—cages that are about the same size as their bodies, preventing them from walking, visiting with other pigs, or even turning around. 

 

 

Animals on factory farms are treated as units of production rather than the sensitive, intelligent, and aware beings that they are. They are bred to produce more meat, more milk, more eggs, and more offspring—all of which come at a dear cost to their bodies, resulting in often debilitatingly painful conditions. 

And all of the animals who end up on our plates are very young—relative children compared with natural lifespans. That glass of milk? It comes from a cow who is at most five years old, when cows can naturally live into their twenties and beyond. That chicken breast? It came from a bird who was a few weeks old. 

A big part of why Kinder Beauty does what we do is to make vegan beauty more popular, support the movement to protect animals, and help people understand that it’s easy, and beneficial, to choose vegan for your skin. 

Common misconceptions about veganism

Veganism is often construed as a diet of extremes, where one is obliged to make constant sacrifices and suffer terrible health consequences along the way.

What if we told you the exact opposite may well be true? 

There’s a reason—many reasons, in fact!—why more and more people are turning to a vegan diet. And maybe in reading these misconceptions that we’ve busted through below, you might just become a convert.  

Do vegans age faster

We’ve all heard that saying about staying young at heart. Well, it turns out there’s scientific evidence that people do, in fact, age at different rates. This means that someone who’s just had their 40th birthday party can have the body of a 35-year-old or a 50-year-old—all depending on a variety of lifestyle and environmental factors. 

In fact, one study found there to be a variance of up to 30 years between people’s chronological age and the age their bodies (their biological age) appeared to be when tested. Some of the study participants were seen to simply “pause” biological aging. We’ll take some of that, thank you! 

But the question is, do vegans age faster? 

There are a few reasons why vegans could age slower than people who eat a lot of animal products—notably, those vegans who adhere to that all-important whole-foods vegan diet.

Fruits, veggies, and whole grains contain way more antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals than animal products; plus, animal products tend to be filled with chemicals, hormones, and harmful bacteria that the body needs to filter out. Depriving your body of nutrients while taxing your body with toxins can result in faster aging. 

Do vegans heal slower

While there is still debate about whether a vegan diet will slow the body’s natural healing process, Neal Barnard, MD, president of the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, says that this is “really old-fashioned thinking” and that a vegan diet may actually aid healing. 

Because a plant-based diet can help to regulate the inflammatory response, the healing process can be sped along. Conversely, animal products can promote inflammation, which can cause enlarged blood vessels, the release of antibodies, and blood leaking into tissues—all of which can wind up prolonging healing time.

Final thoughts

We think it’s pretty clear: there are so many benefits to a vegan diet, not least for your skin! Between a vegan glow, slower aging, no acne, and shiny, thick hair—well, what reasons are there not to give this diet a whirl? 

We’ve got plenty of resources for you in that department to help you get going. And of course, anytime you shop Kinder Beauty’s marketplace or receive one of our boxes, you can feel confident that you’ll be receiving products that are 100% vegan and cruelty-free. 

 

Sources: 


What going vegan did for my skin and hair | Byrdie

Acne: diet and acnegenesis | Indian Dermatology Online Journal

Some people do age faster than others | Medicinenet.com