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This vital trace mineral is an essential cofactor for antioxidant enzymes. The result is a powerful ability to guard skin's elasticity by fighting free radical-spurred cellular damage. Also essential to the body's natural detoxification system, selenium facilitates the release of toxins through the liver, reducing the risk that they will seep out through the skin. Nuts, seeds, and fish contain high levels of the mineral, but Fuchs points out that many people still tend to be deficient in selenium. Try supplementing with 80-200 mcg per day.

4. Bring on probiotics

Beyond improving digestion, restoring an optimum balance of good bacteria in your gastrointestinal tract is likely to carry long-term payoffs for your appearance. When the digestive system is off-kilter, says Fuchs, it's unable to absorb ingested nutrients, depriving nutrition to the rest of the body. For example, improper nutrient digestion could lead to graying hair or, worse, hair loss. To keep gut flora in check, take 8 to 16 billion organisms of acidophilus or bifidobacteria every day, and eat low-sugar plain yogurt with live active cultures. In addition to keeping hair silky, this regimen may also promote clearer skin and bolster your immune system, says Blum.

Denver-based writer Hilary Oliver loves zinc for its complexion-smoothing effects. She is the health and beauty editor of Natural Foods Merchandiser.

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