Trying to turn back the clock on your skin without surgery or needles? While the anti-aging and skin care industry focuses on improving your outward appearance, you can improve your skin from within through dietary changes.
What you eat, drink, smoke (don’t), how much sun you get, and whether or not you’re resting enough has a major impact on how your skin looks today, tomorrow, and years from now. Treating your skin topically is not enough to preserve those good looks for the future. Eating a diet high in fruits and vegetables while reducing your overall intake of refined grains, sugars, and animal products will improve both your skin’s appearance and your overall health.
Are you eating the right foods for your skin? Try to incorporate at least a few (if not all) of the healthy foodstuffs listed below in your daily diet.
Tomatoes. Tomatoes are amazing sources of lycopene, which is found in all red fruits and vegetables. This carotenoid protects your skin against sun damage by getting rid of skin-aging free radicals caused by UV rays. Tomatoes also provide a hefty dose of vitamin C, another skin-friendly antioxidant. All you need is half a cup a day to help improve your skin’s protection against UV rays.
Sweet potatoes and carrots. Orange-colored vegetables provide high doses of above mentioned vitamin C. This antioxidant can be applied topically or ingested for a boost to the skin. Wrinkles are caused, in part, by diminishing collagen—vitamin C helps increase production of this protein that helps skin retain its smooth surface.
Sweet potatoes and carrots also boast high-levels of vitamin A, which seems to help with skin issues like acne, eczema, and psoriasis.
Additionally, eating brightly colored fruits and vegetables can give your skin a glow — no tanning session needed.
Almonds. Packed full of vitamin E, almonds are a portable, diet-friendly, and heart-healthy snack that also bumps up your resistance to UV exposure. People who ate at least 20 almonds a day burned less in the sun than those who didn’t eat any almonds. (However, if you’re looking to lose weight, watch your intake as they’re high in calories for a small portion size.)
Blueberries. Considered to be one of the highest sources of antioxidants, the phytochemicals in blueberries target free radicals that can damage skin (and other) cells. These phytochemicals neutralize the DNA-damaging free radicals, protecting skin cells from damage and destruction—which helps the skin stay fresher-looking for longer.
Salmon. An excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids and protein, salmon not only helps reduce fine lines by lowering inflammation in the body, it also provides a host of benefits for your body, including boosting your brain’s performance, improving cardiovascular health, lifting moods, and aiding in better quality sleep.
Green tea. Not only is green tea a great metabolism-booster, which can help you keep your waistline, but it also protects your skin from cancer. The polyphenols found in this popular drink may actually help reverse the damage done by harmful UV rays from the sun. Polyphenols are also thought to be heart-healthy, as they reduce the inflammation and buildup of fat in blood vessels.
A healthy diet that supports your body and mind as well as your skin, is the best kind of anti-aging program. Don’t forget to take care of it from the outside too—always apply sunblock, regardless of whether or not you’ll be directly in the sun. UV rays cause signs of aging and are able to penetrate windows and clothing.
Nourish your skin from within to get glowing, healthy skin that seems to be aging backwards.
Marcela De Vivo is a freelance writer in Southern California. She specializes in beauty and health topics, and often contributes to the Bellezza Spa blog. Keeping her skin healthy is very important to her and she tries incorporating these foods into her diet frequently. Follow her on Twitter today!