Lasting Beauty From the Inside Out
Nutrition Tips for Lasting Beauty and Longevity
I am sure you have heard that YOU ARE WHAT YOU EAT. Well, what you eat affects not only your physical health and your ability to fight illness, it also affects your skin and eyes and even your hair! Your diet has a lot to do with not only your health and beauty from the inside, but it has a great deal to do with your outside radiant health and beauty as well.
For example, eating foods that are high in antioxidants can help to support your skin’s natural repair systems and fight free radical damage. According to Dr. Neal Barnard, we have millions of oxygen molecules in our bodies. They can, however, through normal living become unstable. When they do, they are called free radicals and can harm healthy cells. They can even attack your DNA. Biologists believe that much of the aging process is caused by free radical damage.
Plants can be damaged by oxygen free radicals too. But nature gave them the ability to fight back with antioxidants. When you eat foods high in antioxidants, they enter your bloodstream and help you fight too. The key to great health and beauty is to fill your plate with a wide variety of colorful fruits and vegetables to get the benefit from a wide variety of antioxidants.
Examples of antioxidants:
Vitamin C, E and Selenium (according to doctor’s at Mt. Sinai school of medicine), support the skin’s natural repair systems against free radical damage. Vitamin C actually builds collage and elastin which gives skin its youthful plumpness. Including lots of vitamin C in your diet insures a healthy body and glowing skin.
Good Sources of vitamin C include citrus fruits, red peppers and broccoli, strawberries and blueberries. These foods are packed with other phytonutrients too that support good health and inner and outer beauty. Vitamin E is found in whole grains, such as brown rice, quinoa, and in nuts such as almonds and hazelnuts. Selenium is easily found in Brazil nuts. I always suggest to my clients that they just eat a few Brazil nuts a day to insure that they meet their daily requirements for selenium.
Vitamin A is another powerful antioxidant that is food for your skin. Vitamin A is found in orange vegetables like carrots, winter squash and sweet potatoes as well as green leafy vegetables. These foods are also known for being high in beta carotene which is a powerful antioxidant. Beta carotene helps to fight rough, scaly, winter skin and these nutrients protect against UV damage too. Beta carotene helps to balance your skin’s PH and encourages skin cell turnover too, which can mean smoother, softer skin.
Resveratrol, most commonly found in red grapes, has been noted lately as having possible anti-aging and anti-cancer properties and may provide support for cardiovascular health. Animal studies have been conducted and human studies are underway looking at the health benefits of resveratrol. Visit www.janetmckee.com to take a look at Vivix, which is a resveratrol liquid supplement that contains both resveratrol and a proprietary phytonutrient blend. According to Shaklee researchers, “This phytonutrient blend harnesses the powerful antioxidant properties of rare muscadine grapes and has been shown to be 10X more powerful than resveratrol alone in slowing a key mechanism of cellular aging.”
B vitamins are essential for skin cell health too. A deficiency in this important vitamin family can lead to itchy, dry skin and even acne. Whole grains are a good healthy source of B Vitamins.
Also, the natural antioxidant, CoQ10 can nurture skin cell growth and protect the skin from free radical damage. Some studies speculate that CoQ10 can protect the skin and prevent wrinkles and other types of damage associated with UV exposure. Foods high in CoQ10 include spinach, broccoli, peanuts, wheat germ, whole grains, sardines and eggs. Stick with the plant foods, though, as you will avoid saturated fat and cholesterol!
How about healthy fats?
Omega 3’s are also important to help preserve the skin’s moisture keeping it plumper and younger looking and decreasing the appearance of fine lines. Omega 3s also have an antiinflammatory effect that can help to calm irritated skin giving you a clearer complexion. Foods high in omega 3 are flax, walnuts, chia seeds, wild salmon and sardines.
Supplementing your diet with fresh juice will provide noticeable benefits to your appearance. When you juice, you absorb the nutrients directly into the cells of your body giving your skin and eyes a true healthy glow. Green juices help to alkalize and purify your blood which naturally clears your skin and improves your health and vitality. Vegetable juices supply minerals such as potassium, magnesium, calcium, silicon, sulfur and zinc, all of which protect the hair and skin.
What should you include in your juice?
- Include carrots, because they are rich in potassium and beta carotene which helps to prevent sagging and improve complexion.
- Include beets, as they are good blood builders high in calcium, iron, magnesium and selenium which is believed to even help prevent bags under your eyes.
- Include cucumber, for it is a good source of calcium, magnesium, vitamin E and C and especially sulfur which is thought to be the beauty mineral.
- How about broccoli? Broccoli is high in chromium which is thought to put the brakes on aging.
- And of course be sure to include celery, because it is a source of potassium, sodium, and vitamins A,B, and C. It is a natural diuretic so it can be used to discourage water retention too.
Now for the fun part!
Some great news for all of you chocolate lovers; chocolate may actually help to improve your skin! A German study published in the Journal of Nutrition found that women who drank hot cocoa had softer and smoother skin. Cocoa is high in flavonoids which is the nutrient believed to provide these amazing benefits.
This DOES NOT mean you should run out and start eating Snicker’s bars to your heart content. The problem with most chocolate treats, they are filled with sugar and dairy, both of which will wreak havoc to your skin and your weight and all aspects of inner and outer beauty. No need to worry, I have great solutions to truly healthy chocolate desserts that avoid all added sugar and fat and dairy. Please see my past newsletters and blogs on the health benefits of chocolate and some of the desserts I demonstrated on my youtube channel.
Thank you and have a Happy Holiday and a BEAUTIFUL New Year!