The last time I found myself facing dry skin, I turned to Traditional Chinese Medicine (“TCM”) for guidance. According to its wisdom, dryness can be a result of an imbalanced diet, excessive activity, too much stress or unfavorable climate. According to TCM, in order to alleviate dryness, we need to consume moisturizing foods. These include: spinach, seaweeds, millet, barley, pears, apples, almonds, peanuts and pine nuts, sesame seeds, eggs, crab, mussels, herring, pork and honey. Most of these products (maybe except for crabs and mussels) are available even in the winter, so you should have no problem buying them. On the other hand, an excess of herbs and seasoning can dry the body, so, in this case, it’s best to limit their intake.
Aside from that, consider whether your diet is not lacking in essential fatty acids. They are responsible for, among other things, healthy hair and healthy skin, and an insufficient amount of them may lead to skin disease, as well as dry hair and hair loss.
The highest concentrations of essential fatty acids can be found in: linseed, almonds, nuts (pecans, hazelnuts, walnuts, and pine nuts), sesame seeds, sunflower seeds, and pumpkin seeds. I add them to my millet groats and oatmeal for breakfast, and to salads and desserts. They are best eaten fresh, right after they’ve been husked to keep them from going rancid, and in small doses, because they tend to be heavier on the stomach.
TCM especially recommends linseed and linseed oil. Every morning I add a spoonful of linseed oil to my warm breakfast, but you can add it to salads and even soups (after you’ve taken them off the burner and poured them into bowls). Try it – I’m sure you’ll notice the difference quick enough.