You know that too much alcohol and smoking can dehydrate and take oxygen away from your skin, risking its health, right? You know that sitting in the sun too long can damage your skin and that by not getting enough rest, relaxation, and exercise your skin can suffer too, don't you? Did you also know that by not eating the proper foods you could be damaging your skin as well?
Here are some foods that can help you maintain healthy skin and nourish skin that's been damaged:
Fish, Beans and Oils
Many of you have heard me preach of the vital role essential fatty acids play with aging skin, as EFA’s are required to maintain skin elasticity. Denying your body of the 'good' fats, such as omega-3 fatty acids, can cause your skin to wrinkle prematurely. Good sources of EFA’s in your diet are fish, especially salmon, and nuts like almonds and sunflower seeds. The best sources of EFA’s also come in flax seed oil, coconut oil and borage oil, which can be incorporated into your cooking or as a daily supplement.
Got acne? Spinach and other dark green vegetables are antioxidants that can reduce the inflammation of pimples, and orange vegetables such as carrots and peppers, are high in beta-carotene, which turns into Vitamin A in your body to heal damaged skin. Winter vegetables are packed with beta-carotene. I encourage you to stock up on your squash. Your skin will love you for it!
Blackberries, plums, strawberries, blueberries and prunes are all included in the group of fruits that can help you keep your system toxic-free, and thus help your skin look radiant and healthy! Be sure not to throw out wilted veggies & spent fruit. Simply puree them in your blender, making your own alpha-hydroxy, anti-aging face wash! You really don’t need to spend a fortune on high end products when all the sought after ingredients are already in your fridge. Be sure to read on for your free monthly recipe.
Turkey and Chicken (White Meat)
Your skin's cells cannot be repaired without protein. Don't or can't eat meat? Nuts! No, I mean eat nuts for protein. You can also substitute meat with egg whites or soy products to get the protein you need as well.
Water, Water, and More Water
If there is any substance in the world that your body just can't get enough of, it's water. Since your body consists of approximately 80% water, it only makes sense that you need to replenish the water in your body, especially if you exercise a lot or live in a dry climate. Sodas and caffeinated drinks dehydrate your skin. If drinking water is challenging, slices of cucumber or oranges with mint sprigs create a refreshing spa beverage that you can keep refrigerated or fill up your sports bottle when on the go.
It is true that you are what you eat, so eat well, live well, and look totally awesome! Be sure to visit your local farmer’s markets or natural food grocers for organic foods, free of hormones and pesticides. By doing so you’re eating optimal quality foods and supporting a sustainable environment.