One of the first things we blame when we get a breakout is food. We try to recall what junk we ate that left the huge zit on our forehead (even if we didn't eat junk!). It’s inherently known that what you put into your system, your system will return back to you. If we ate too much candy on Halloween, then we might get a cavity. If we drank too much coffee, then we get jittery. And the same goes with our diet and skin. If our gut isn’t well balanced, then that imbalance will show up on our skin... mostly in the form of breakouts!
We asked, Alix Turoff, a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist about how she takes care of her skin by taking care of her diet. Alix is also a NASM Certified Personal Trainer and Indoor Cycling Instructor. She’s also your virtual nutrition coach! Alix Turoff Nutrition is a 100% virtual private practice where she uses "flexible dieting" to help women build healthy, sustainable nutrition habits while repairing their relationship with food and getting to their happy weight. She’s a big believer that all foods can have a place in a healthy diet, as long as you know how to balance it!
Check out our interview with her down below!
What made you decide to be in the career you’re in? What do you love about it?
I became a Registered Dietitian because of my own personal experience with my weight. After losing a substantial amount of weight at a young age, I developed an extremely poor body image and a slew of disordered eating behaviors to go along with it. I went to NYU to pursue journalism and quickly realized my passion was in nutrition and helping others avoid what I went through.
How has your dedication to a nutrition-first diet influenced your lifestyle and how you take care of your skin?
Taking care of my body is very important to me and that goes beyond nutrition. Exercise is a non-negotiable for me. It's a source of stress relief but I also love how it feels to be strong. Because of my interest in journalism, I was actually a freelance beauty writer through undergrad and grad school so I started exploring skincare early on. I have an AM and PM skincare routine and I make it a priority. I also make sure I'm staying well hydrated!
Do any of your clients have acne? If so, how can a healthy diet + gut help their skin?
Some of my clients do experience acne or breakouts. It's possible that your skin can be related to diet but it's not always the case so it's important to experiment with what works for you. If skincare issues are a primary concern for a client, I'd usually have them try an elimination diet to help identify what (if any) food might be contributing to the skin issues.
Does celery juice actually improve the skin?
Other than the fact that celery is mostly water, there's nothing magical about celery juice. If you like it, drink it! But if not, just get your water in!
You’ve stated that you are anti-diet culture but pro-healthy sustainable weight loss. What exactly does that look like?
I'm really passionate about helping women achieve weight loss in a healthy way. To me, that means through positive behavior change (such as cooking more at home, exercising, drinking more water, etc) and education rather than restriction. I find that most women who come to me are just confused about what they can and can't eat. They usually have a long list of rules of "good and bad" foods that they've picked up over the years of doing different diets or through social media. I like to set the record straight by really starting from the basics of nutrition. We discuss calories and macronutrients which are really the basis of nutrition and most people I work with have a very poor understanding of their individual needs.
How would you say the relationship between nutrition and mental health is evolving?
I don't think it's possible to look at physical health separately from mental health. If following a diet was so easy, everyone would just find a plan online, follow it, and get to their goal weight. But that's not what happens. There are a ton of things that come up when you start a diet and find yourself unable to stick to it. This might mean bingeing because of an overly restrictive plan, drinking too much alcohol, or other forms of self sabotage that need to be dealt with before ever really getting to the weight loss.
Don’t stop here! Find more on Alix’s instagram where she shares healthy recipes and her two cents on foods and diets!
What’s your favorite healthy food? Let us know in the comments!