What do Jennifer Lopez, Selma Hayak, and Anne Hathaway all have in common? Aside from being drop dead gorgeous, they all have undoubtedly radiant and glowing skin, with minimal signs of aging. It’s no surprise your face is the first thing people notice when they see you. You don’t have to be a celebrity to get award-winning skin.
Skin performs many functions, and for one it serves as a shield against germs and the environment. Skin helps to convert sunlight to vitamin D, and too much sunlight over the years can be damaging to your skin. The best way to slow the aging process is to keep your skin well-hydrated to protect the internal moisture.
You are what you eat. Research found that eating a healthy diet rich in antioxidants, drinking lots of water, and having a good skincare regimen to condition the skin and minimize moisture loss can help keep your skin luminous. It is all about keeping the skin healthy from the inside and out.
The best way to slow the aging of skin is to keep the cells from oxidizing; this includes a diet high in ANTI-oxidants. Foods that include high amounts of vitamins A, C, and E will decrease the risk of sun and other environmental damage of disarming wrinkle-causing “free radicals”, which are unstable molecules that damage cells.
Vitamin A is an essential nutrient that supports skin. Vitamin A thickens and stimulates the dermis – the thicker, deeper layer of the skin where your collagen, elastin and blood vessels are located. In turn, it helps to reduce wrinkles and increase blood flow to the surface of the skin. Foods high in vitamin A include: carrots, mangoes, kale, cantaloupe, spinach, and greens.
Vitamin C may also help fend off the signs of aging because of its important role in the body’s natural collagen synthesis. It helps to heal damaged skin and, in some cases, reduces the appearance of wrinkles. Foods rich in vitamin C include: oranges, grapefruit, papayas, strawberries, kiwis, red and green peppers, mangoes, kale, and cauliflower.
Vitamin E is an antioxidant that may be beneficial at reducing Ultraviolet (UV) damage to skin, and can benefit the skin as a moisturizer. Food sources rich in vitamin E include nuts and seeds, salmon, green leafy vegetables, spinach, asparagus, vegetable oils, and olives.
Want to get your daily dose of vitamins A, C, and E? Try this delicious smoothie.
The Green Monster Smoothie
- ½ cup kale
- ½ cup alfalfa sprouts
- 1 frozen banana
- 1 mango
- ½ cantaloupe
- ½ cup coconut water
- 1 cup ice cubes
Directions: Mix all the ingredients in a blender until smooth. Cheers!
Susan Zogheib, MHS, RD, LDN
Susan Zogheib is a registered dietitian (RD) with a master’s degree in health science in nutrition communication from Ryerson University in Toronto, Ontario. She is a food and nutrition media consultant and nutrition expert with over ten years’ experience working as a clinical dietitian. Susan is the author of four cookbooks, including The Mediterranean Diet Plan: Heart-Healthy Recipes & Meal Plans for Every Type of Eater. She currently lives in Knoxville, Tennessee.