Eating right and looking good go hand in hand. The same foods that are good for your health, increase energy, boost the immune system, and detoxify the body, are also good for your skin. Your skin is a reflection of what is going on inside your body so for glowing skin and optimal inner health, load up on nutrient dense foods. Eating foods high in certain antioxidants also help to protect skin from sun damage and repair and rejuvenate itself. Antioxidants in the body decrease when skin is exposed to sunlight which may accelerate aging, so it is important to replenish with antioxidant rich foods to protect the skin.
To keep your skin nourished and youthful, try incorporating more of these foods into your eating plan:
Lycopene, a phytochemical, helps eliminate skin-aging free radicals caused by ultraviolet rays and protects against sun damage. Watermelon is a great source of lycopene and has been found to reduce redness and inflammation associated with sun exposure. Lycopene is also found in tomatoes, pink grapefruit, papayas, and guava.
Dark Green Veggies:
Beta-carotene, another antioxidant that’s critical for skin health, is converted to vitamin A in the body and is involved in the growth and repair of body tissues.You may already know that beta carotene is found in deep orange foods like carrots, squash, peppers, papaya and mangoes. But beta carotene is also found in green produce including spinach, romaine lettuce, kale, chard, collards, and broccoli. Beta carotene provides protection against sun damage and has been shown to reduce the redness and UV damage from sun exposure.
Raw Nuts and Seeds:
Sun exposure depletes vitamin E in the skin by up to 50 percent accelerating wrinkling of the skin. Vitamin E helps protect cell membranes and guards your skin against damage from the sun’s UV radiation. Eating raw nuts and seeds (almonds, brazil nuts, walnuts, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds brazil nuts) boosts your intake of vitamin E to keep your skin taut and supple and lower skin-cancer risk.
Raw Cacao Beans:
Most flavonoids function in the human body as antioxidants to help protect cells from oxygen damage and prevent excessive inflammation throughout your body. Research has shown that the flavanoids in cacao beans can shield skin from free radical damage caused by the sun and reduce roughness in the skin.
Organic Green Tea (without the sugar):
Plant compounds, polyphenols, have powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, and can protect against the damage caused by UV radiation and help to lower the risk of skin cancer.
Packed with omega–3 fatty acids to help maintain cell membrane integrity by allowing water and nutrients in, but keeping toxins out. These healthy fats also reduce inflammation throughout the body to help fight wrinkles, erase spots, smooth fine lines, and reduce skin irritation and redness.
My latest love, aloe vera, an amazing superfood that offers healing powers not just externally, but also internally. That’s right, aloe vera enhances skin health when eaten! Cut off all the dark green tough skin and scoop out the gel on the inside with a spoon. Add it to smoothies to help hydrate, nourish, and protect the skin. Aloe also accelerates the regeneration of new skin tissue after being out in the sun.
You are what you eat. You are what you think. ~Gracious Living Lifestyle XO