Everyone knows that eating your veggies and cutting out the fat is “what we are supposed to do” because it’s better for us.
Some of us, or maybe most of us, want what looks good to us, RIGHT NOW! If I’m looking at a bowl of ice cream, next to a bowl of strawberries, it’s unlikely that the strawberries will win. Unless of course, there was a sign behind each of them and behind the ice cream it read, “Eat me and you will age 60%” and behind the strawberries there was a sign that read “Eat me and you will reverse your aging by 40%”. That might be a motivator for me. It’s doubtful that I or you would ever come across such a motivator, so this is your sign!
You can improve your diet for health, but how much of what you eat attributes to how your skin looks and feels? Stated plainly, the benefits of eating well works from the inside out. Some nutrients, however, contribute more than others when it comes to your youthful glow.
Food high in Vitamin C
Vitamin C is well known for its importance in contributing to our health and we all know we need more of it when we have a cold. Did you know that it performs vital functions for skin care as well? It serves a primary role in contributing to the formation of a protein that is important in building tissues, hair, skin and nails, bones and teeth. Equally important is that it is an antioxidant, fighting free radicals that once unleashed, begin a chain reaction of systematic cell damage and can even interfere with the structure of DNA. Consistent interference by these free radicals is largely responsible for the aging process.
Clinical studies have shown that Vitamin C is a great weapon in this war on anti-aging and actually triggers the production of collagen. Some foods are fortified with Vitamin C, but it is best when they are taken from Mother Nature in the form of our everyday fruits and veggies. Self.com lists these as the highest in Vitamin C:
- Acerola, (west indian cherry), raw.
- Guavas, raw
- Litchis, dried
- Currants, European black, raw
If you have trouble finding these in your local market, some more common fruits high in Vitamin C are:
Peaches are a rich source of Vitamin C and antioxidants.
Juices are good, but can sometimes contain added sugar, which is something to avoid when you fight aging skin. A great deal of Vitamin C can be found in the peel, so adding the peel to recipes can help you keep that youthful appearance as well as pop a little extra zest to your meal!
Vegetables with the highest sources of vitamin C include:
- Chili Peppers
- Red and Green Bell Pepper
- Kale, Spinach, cabbage, turnip greens, and other leafy greens
Add Basil to that!
Basil has extraordinary antibacterial, antimicrobial and anti-aging properties. Researchers in India have proven that the flavonoids in Basil slowed the production of free radicals in the body. This herb works very well in protecting the body from premature aging.
Basil has extraordinary anti-bacterial, antimicrobial and anti-aging properties.
With the reduction of oxygen and increased UV radiation in the atmosphere, our bodies are subjected to an excited electron state called singlet oxygen, which causes large scale removal of DNA and destruction of useful proteins necessary for us to remain healthy and youthful. Of course, we need to keep applying the SPF, but Lycopene is a nutrient that can help bulldoze this free radical.
As we age we lose the ability to maintain lycopene levels in our system and that leads to the destruction of the proteins that keep our skin vibrant. Just a little extra each week can make a big difference.
As we age we lose the ability to maintain lycopene levels in our system.
In our list of foods with Lycopene, Guava comes in again and sits at the top of our list.
In our list of foods with Lycopene, Guava comes in again and sits at the top of our list. With only 37 calories and half a gram of fat, this delicious treat is our number one. Others to add include:
Water, of course.
Yes, this is an article about food, but when we are talking about important nutrients for your skin, almost nothing fights aging skin better than water. Our bodies are 70% water and almost every process in your body requires water to function. Without adequate water intake, our cells begin to dehydrate. Have you ever seen dehydrated fruit? That’s exactly what happens to your cells when you neglect your water.
The largest organ in your body is your skin. Insufficient amounts of water will lead to millions of deflated, dull, shrinking cells on the inner and outer layers of your skin. The necessary way to replenish that water is to drink purified water on a much more consistent basis.
Try starting the day with a half of a glass of water then increase it a little every morning until you are drinking a full glass first thing every day.
Some people have a lot of trouble with going from no glasses of water to eight glasses of water a day. However, in your search for natural skin care, might I suggest slow, steady increases in your water intake every day? Try starting the day with a half of a glass of water then increase it a little every morning until you are drinking a full glass first thing every day. Then try swapping every other drink with water. Gradually wean yourself off the other beverages, especially if soda or coffee are your main beverages. The change in your skin and your energy levels will dramatically change, for the better!
Now that I’ve mentioned what to add to your diet, I would be neglectful if I didn’t mention one particular food that you need to remove, and this could be a hard one.
Cut Back on the Sugar!
There is a natural process in our bodies called Glycation. When you eat sugar it attaches to proteins to form Advanced glycation end products (AGE’s). These demons are wrecking your skin making it dull and wrinkled. Their primary victim is the collagen and elastin in your skin. With collagen being the most abundant protein in the body, it is the first to suffer the attack. The protein fibers weaken and your firm, elastic skin begins to lose its shine and wrinkles begin to develop.
You can turn back the hands of time by limiting the amount of added sugar in your diet.
Luckily, you can turn back the hands of time by limiting the amount of added sugar in your diet. Some natural sugars you should endure, but processed foods and sugary drinks are the main culprits of added sugar. If you are a sugar addict, replacing a soda with a bottle of water or grabbing the strawberries instead of the ice cream are just a couple of ways that you can begin to reverse the aging process. Try to cut back the sugar and indulge only occasionally. Your youthful glow will thank you for it.
If there is a fountain of youth, it is in the fuel you feed your body. Take care of it and it will be noticeable inside and out!