A huge misconception is that you can heal/treat/nourish/manage your skin with topical products. While topical products are a significant part of a skin regimen, they are not everything. Your skin is a direct reflection of your lifestyle choices, but it goes beyond not smoking and not tanning to avoid wrinkles and cancer. When it comes to your skin’s health, you can take a proactive role in giving it what it needs by eating foods that feed your skin.
With spring in full swing and summer just around the corner, fresh produce abounds. And there’s nothing skin loves more than fruits, veggies and healthy fats to keep it nourished, healthy and glowing. So toss aside that brie wheel, your rice cakes and jar of Nutella that you eat by the spoonful. It’s time to get fresh (and I don’t mean frisky!) Here are my top five foods for boosting skin health and making you look and feel better:
- Tomatoes: Salsa, bruschetta and tomato-cucumber salads are great sources for lycopene, which is the photochemical that makes tomatoes red. Lycopnene also helps boost collagen strength and fight off the oxidizing effect of UV rays by eliminating skin-aging free radicals. Cooked tomatoes have an even higher level of lycopene, so go ahead and enjoy that tomato sauce or gazpacho. Your skin thanks you!
- Carrots: If you’ve been noticing blemishes lately, start munching on some carrots. They are good for clearing up breakouts. Carrots are packed with beta-carotene and vitamin A, an antioxidant which prevents overproduction of cells in the skin’s outer layer. This means fewer flaky dead cells that otherwise could combine with sebum to clog your pores. Plus, vitamin A plays an essential role in reducing the development of skin-cancer cells.
- Avocados: If you’ve noticed your face looking older than you’d like, it’s time to up your avocado intake. The fruit is rich in monounsaturated fatty acids. These acids hydrate and shield your skin by lowering the risk of premature aging caused by ultraviolet radiation.
- Papaya: The papaya is highly regarded among many cuisines. Some cultures even make a soup from the papaya for nursing mothers because the fruit is so full of healthy goodness. The papaya is packed with active enzymes that relieve inflammation and can help eliminate blemishes.
- Blueberries: The blueberry is basically the super hero of produce. It’s chock full of antioxidants that help your body manage free radicals. Blueberries also help boost collagen strength and fight inflammation.
It’s important to fuel your body with what it needs to nourish your skin. Doing the legwork topically doesn’t matter if you’re feeding your skin junk. A bonus tip: drink spa water and stay hydrated, particularly during the warmer months. Adding fruit to your water gives you a burst of flavor and detoxifying properties!