Top 10 Foods for Glowing Summer Skin

Dr. Natalie Waller, ND

Dr. Natalie Waller, ND

The secret to healthy glowing skin is staying well hydrated and protecting and feeding your skin from the inside out. If you are reading this article and you are in your early 20s, you may have smooth plump skin that seems resilient to the effects of the sun. You may heal quickly and never seem to have dry skin.This is how it should be in your 20s. Don’t be fooled, however, into thinking that time won’t catch up to you. What you do in your early years will definitely impact how gracefully you age. The more intense your sun exposure in your early years, the faster you will age and it may become noticeable as soon as your early 30s. A little care now, will go along way so, find a non-toxic sunscreen and eat foods that have natural sunscreen protection abilities.

If you are a little older and youthful carefree living is catching up with you, well don’t fret, you can reverse some of the damage and keep a youthful glow. Again, sunscreen and diet are keys to healthy, happy skin.

The best foods for skin health provide vitamins, minerals and super nutrient anti-oxidants and of course, hydration!

1. Watermelon

This fresh summer fruit is about 90 percent water and rich in vitamins, minerals and antioxidant. This fruit will keep you hydrated, while fighting inflammation and supporting collagen formation. One of the main anti-ageing compounds found in watermelon is a carotenoid, Lycopene. Lycopene is a free radical scavenger so it can help prevent damage from too much sun exposure. It also contains significant levels of Vitamin C, B5, copper and magnesium.

2 Cucumber

Cucumbers provide us with a variety of health-supportive phytonutrients. Included among these phytonutrients are flavonoids (apigenin, luteolin, quercetin, and kaempferol), lignans (pinoresinol, lariciresinol, and secoisolariciresinol), and triterpenes (cucurbitacins A, B, C, and D).

Cucumbers are an excellent source of vitamin K and molybdenum. They are also a very good source of the pantothenic acid. They are also a good source of copper, potassium, manganese, vitamin C, phosphorus, magnesium, biotin, and vitamin B1. They also contain the important skin, hair and nail health-promoting mineral silica.

3. Parsley

Glowing skin

This herb is more than decoration for your plate. It is rich in Vitamin C which offers is an antioxidant and helps to build collagen. The flavonoids in parsley—especially luteolin—have been shown to function as antioxidants that combine with highly reactive oxygen-containing molecules (called oxygen radicals) and help prevent oxygen-based damage to cells. In addition, extracts from parsley have been used in animal studies to help increase the antioxidant capacity of the blood.

It also contains Glutathione, an important intracellular detoxifier that helps brighten and lighten skin.

4. Berries

Sweet summer berries are truly natures candy. Bright reds and deep purples are indications of their health benefits. The pigments in berries help strengthen blood vessels and skin cells. Resveratrol is one of the anti-oxidants that protects against UV damage.

5. Broccoli

Rich in Vitamin C to protect and repair skin as well as contains DIM to help metabolize hormones.

6. Asparagus

A summer bbq favourite. toss it with a little olive oil and balsamic vinegar and enjoy the benefits of glutathione

Aloe Vera: The clear gel from the inside of the leaves is healing when applied topically and taken in internally. This wonder plant is hydrating and contains minerals and MSM. It helps grow hair and is anti-inflammatory. Combine Aloe gel, cucumber and coconut water for a refreshing summer beverage.

7. Wild Salmon

This tasty local fish is anti-inflammatory and health promoting with its abundance of omega 3 fatty acids and carotenoids. Salmon oil is a good option to avoid over consuming heavy metals.

8. Avocado

You can’t go wrong indulging in guacamole when you know you are getting a load of Phytosterols to manage inflammation, carotenoids to prevent and reverse sun damage along with Glutathione and vitamin A.

9. Tomatoes

Eating red helps keep skin from turning red. Volunteers who consumed 5 tablespoons of high-in-lycopene tomato paste daily for 3 months had nearly 25% more protection against sunburn in one study. Even better, skin had more collagen, which prevents sagging. Another reason to toss an extra tomato into your salad: German scientists report that higher skin levels of this antioxidant correlate to fewer fine lines and furrows.

10. Olives

For beautiful mediterranean skin eat your olives and olive oil. Olives are a good source of the antioxidant vitamin E, and they also contain small amounts of antioxidant minerals like selenium and zinc. However, it’s the phytonutrient content of olives that makes them unique as an antioxidant-rich food.

Perhaps the best-studied antioxidant phytonutrient found in olives is oleuropein. Oleuropein is found exclusively in olives, and it’s been shown to function as an antioxidant nutrient in a variety of ways. Intake of oleuropein has been shown to decrease oxidation of LDL cholesterol; to scavenge nitric oxide (a reactive oxygen-containing molecule); to lower several markers of oxidative stress; and to help protect nerve cells from oxygen-related damage.

Consumption of olives has also been shown to raise glutathione levels!

So go and enjoy the summer but make sure to wear your sunscreen, apply a vitamin C serum and pack a picnic filled with summer’s bounty.

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