If you have a medicine cabinet or vanity drawer brimming with skin care serums and creams that did not quite deliver the boasted results, turn to the refrigerator or pantry instead. There are a number of natural foods that not only provide health benefits on the inside, but also perform double duty to provide clear, radiant skin on the outside.
An Apple a Day
Consuming an apple a day may keep the doctor away for a longer duration, but the nutrients in that apple will also aid in keeping skin cancer away. Apples are rich in quercetin, an antioxidant that offers protection against the harmful UVB rays that trigger skin cancer. Quercetin is found in the skin of the apple. In order to reap the benefit, you must eat the whole fruit, peel and all. Some apple varieties contain a higher amount of the antioxidant than others. Next time you visit the market, opt for organic Golden Delicious or Cortland apples and enjoy them as-is for a crisp and juicy snack or sliced into a salad.
Smoothing Things Over with Strawberries and Soy
These luscious, sweet, crimson jewels are rich in vitamin C; just one cup of strawberries exceeds the recommended daily allowance. Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant that plays a key role in promoting the production of collagen fibers in skin. Eating more strawberries will result in smoother skin with a firm tone, meaning fewer fine lines and wrinkles. Another prominent antioxidant found in strawberries, ellagic acid, acts to preserve your skin’s elasticity and prevent sagging. Enjoy strawberries as a simple dessert, snack, or salad and cereal topper.
The isoflavone called aglycone that is found in soy offers the same rewards of firmer, smoother skin with fewer wrinkles and fine lines. Next time you contemplate a stir-fry meal, toss some edamame or tofu into the wok. Edamame makes a healthy treat to snack on.
The Incredible Egg
Two antioxidants found in eggs have a lot of benefits to offer. Lutein and zeaxanthin provide elevated levels of protection against UV rays, reducing the risk for brown spots and skin cancer. Additionally, these components help to keep your skin better hydrated, resulting in firmer and softer skin. From hard-boiled eggs added to salads to fried eggs served over a green salad to overstuffed omelets, there are plentiful ways to add an egg to your daily diet.
Alpha-linolenic acid, an omega-3 fatty acid found in walnuts, plays a key role in maintaining the moisture barrier that keeps skin hydrated and supple. Almonds contain vitamin E, which acts as an antioxidant and keeps skin hydrated. Try snacking on a handful of almonds or tossing almonds or walnuts into salads, cereal, stir-fries, fruit salads, and baked goods.
Salad Bowl Skin Sensations
Romaine lettuce is rich in vitamin A and potassium. Vitamin A accelerates cell turnover in your skin. Potassium improves circulation by providing oxygenation and additional nutrients. Lycopene, found in tomatoes, offers protection against sun damage, improved levels of collagen, and a reduction of fine lines. The essential fatty acids in extra virgin olive oil also offer abundant skin protection.
Through aging, the body’s natural resources of antioxidants diminish. In order to preserve your skin’s beauty and vitality, it becomes even more important to replace these antioxidants by consuming more of these foods on a regular basis. Applying a layer of sunscreen is still imperative, but you can discard all of the other skin care products that failed and embrace more of these foods into your daily diet.
Ronald Pullman writes on general health & wellness, nutritional science, fitness & exercise and other related topics. Those concerned with skin health may also want to view microdermabrasion equipment to supplement their diet.