Stretch Marks

Nutrition and Stretch Marks

Skin is the body’s largest organs and like all biological equipment it is prone to damage and needs to be nourished and well looked after.  Women and men can have stretch marks on their abdomen, upper arms, thighs, and breasts and they can be extremely difficult to get rid of.   A healthy and nutritious diet full of essential vitamins is vital for keeping skin in optimum condition.  It can help prevent stretch marks from forming or reduce the severity of their appearance if they arise.

Keeping a well stocked fruit bowl and fridge are powerful weapons against the formation of stretch marks.

Vitamin A - Fruit and vegetables are loaded with vitamin A which is necessary for the general maintenance and repair of skin tissue.

Vitamin B – Biotin is the most important B vitamin and it forms the basis of skin cells.  It can be found in eggs, bananas, and rice.  Niacin is a B vitamin that helps the skin retain its moisture.  It can be found in poultry, fish, beef, nuts, and seeds.

Vitamin C (also known as ascorbic acid) – Is essential for the formation of collagen and therefore a key player in the development and maintenance of healthy skin.  In one major scientific study, prolonged exposure of laboratory cultures of human connective-tissue cells to ascorbate showed an eight-fold increase in collagen production (Murad, S et al. Regulation of collagen synthesis by ascorbic acid.  Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci; 78 (5): 2879-2882).  Good sources of vitamin C include peppers, broccoli, sweet potatoes, and oranges.

Vitamin E – Foods containing vitamin E are easy to find, and include green leafy vegetables, nuts, various vegetable oils, and fruits such as avocado, mango, papaya, and blueberries. Vitamin E is believed to contribute to the skin’s elasticity and firmness and it penetrates deeper into tissue.

Copper – Helps to develop elastin.  Copper  is available in a range of foods that make up a normal balanced diet including nuts (especially brazils and cashew), seeds (poppy and sunflower), cereals, meat, and fish.

Zinc – A deficiency of this essential mineral could promote connective tissue disorders and contribute to the formation of stretch marks.  Foods containing zinc are lean meat, oysters, and poultry.

Hydrate - Drinking plenty of water keeps the skin soft and supple. Stretch marks are less likely to form when the skin is adequately hydrated. 

Junk the Junk Food

As stretch marks can be caused by rapid gain of weight, avoiding excessive junk food consumption is one of the most nutritious ways of keeping your skin in shape.  There is also an abundance of anecdotal evidence that smoking, caffeine, alcohol, and a sedentary lifestyle affect the health and quality of skin.  Cutting out the bad habits will help to keep stretch marks at a minimum.

Disclaimer:  The information provided within this site is not meant to be a substitute for a medical doctor's opinion.  This site is for informational purposes ONLY.  Please check with your medical practitioner before any type of treatment or prevention method is started.

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