When it comes to preventing staph infections, your skin is the most important line of defense. Healthy skin can help keep staph bacteria at bay and prevent them from entering your bloodstream.
Consuming Foods Rich in Vitamin A Can Help Maintain Healthy Skin
The vitamin A family is composed of carotenoids such as beta-carotene, lycopene and lutein. These nutrients have long been known for helping promote healthy skin, along with other benefits such as fighting against free radical damage and bolstering your immunity.
The following foods have a reputation for having high vitamin A content:1
You’d be wise to add carrots to your regular diet, because a half-cup alone already provides 184 percent of the daily recommended value for vitamin A intake. Fresh, juiced carrots may provide as much as 451 percent. Since carrots taste fairly neutral, they’re a great addition in soups or as a side dish for meats.
Sweet potatoes, especially their skin, are a great source of carotenoids. One medium sweet potato alone contains over 400 percent of the daily recommended value for vitamin A.
They also have phytonutrients that can help improve blood clotting — an important component in helping your skin heal right away from cuts and wounds, which can prevent staph bacteria from entering your bloodstream.
A word of caution if you’re going to consume sweet potatoes — they contain sugar, so use them in moderation. If you’re diabetic or are having problems with insulin resistance, consult with your doctor first before consuming this food.
• Dark Leafy Greens
A significant amount of carotenoids are found in dark leafy greens as well. The most nutritious examples you can consume are kale, spinach and turnip. A cup of spinach in particular, can provide 56 percent of the daily recommended value of vitamin A.
Tomatoes contain lycopene, and it is this vitamin that gives tomatoes their iconic red color. One cup of tomatoes can provide 22 percent of the recommended daily intake of vitamin A. To compensate for the lower amount of vitamin A, you can mix tomatoes with the other ingredients in this list to create a wonderful, vitamin A-rich recipe.
Adding Omega-3 to Your Diet May Help Your Battle Against Staph as Well
Omega-3 is a healthy fat that has anti-inflammatory benefits. Since most staph skin infections and a few invasive staph infections have inflammation as a symptom, it may be beneficial to consume this healthy fat to help treat the symptoms.
Apart from being an anti-inflammatory, omega-3 may also help improve your heart health. Research has shown that it improves heart health by helping maintain your blood pressure, preventing fat buildup in the heart valves and counteracting cardiac arrhythmia.
There is some evidence that omega-3 may also help fight sepsis, a potentially life-threatening invasive staph infection that can lead to multiple organ failure. In a study published in Infect and Immunity, researchers examined the effects of omega-3 on staph-induced sepsis on mice. They found that omega-3 has the ability to reduce bacterial loads in the body, thereby reducing inflammation and increasing chances of survival.2
The best sources of omega-3 fats are fatty fish, such as wild-caught Alaskan salmon, anchovies and sardines. It’s important that you obtain them from organic sources, because commercially raised fish are typically loaded with toxins and pollutants such as mercury, lead, cadmium and arsenic.
If you’re having difficulties finding organic sources of fish, you can compensate by taking a high-quality krill oil supplement. Krill oil has high concentrations of omega-3 and its antioxidant potency is higher than fish.