Thanksgiving Day—a day to show gratitude and reflect on all the good things that have come our way in the course of the year. It is also a day for relationships. Family and friends gather around a communal table to talk, laugh, and enjoy the sumptuous spread before them.

thanksgiving-feast-can-help-your-skin

Thanksgiving Dinner Spread

The Thanksgiving meal is a product of rich food traditions. In most families, the turkey takes center stage. Like a king in his court, the turkey is surrounded by a full complement of supporting side dishes. Most people shudder at the thought of the extra pounds they will accumulate from the bountiful feast, but if eaten in moderation, the meal can be a boon to your well-being. Various menu items are packed with nutrients that will support your heath. In fact, many traditional Thanksgiving dishes can benefit your skin, helping it to be more vibrant and healthy:

  • Turkey – The centerpiece of the dinner table is a rich source of zinc, which allows the skin to synthesize collagen for soft but firm skin.
  • Cranberries – Of all the vegetables and fruits on the Thanksgiving table, cranberries are usually the number one source of antioxidants that are essential in neutralizing free radicals that damage skin cells. Antioxidants help the skin stay smooth and blemish-free.
  • Kale – This veggie is also rich in antioxidants and a good source of vitamin A to boost the beauty of the skin.
  • Sweet Potatoes – These tubers are high in fiber, which cleans the digestive tract. They are also a good source of vitamin A, which promotes growth of new skin.
  • Pumpkin – It is loaded with beta-carotene for the prevention of wrinkles and preservation of skin moisture.
  • Red wine – It is a good source of polyphenols and resveratrol that may contribute to the slowing of the aging process.

Not everything on the Thanksgiving table is good for the skin, though. Avoid the following items or eat them only in moderation.

  • Chips – Most people love these salty finger foods made from refined carbohydrates, but they can greatly contribute to skin breakouts.
  • Candy – People turn to candy after a dinner or as a snack leading up to dinner. Candy is very high in sugar. Sugar can decrease collagen and elastin production, resulting in wrinkled and rough skin. It can also cause skin breakouts.

Enjoy the camaraderie that the Thanksgiving dinner brings. Eat smart and modestly. You’ll feel better at the end of the day—and your skin will thank you, too.