As we ease into the long summer days and warm nights, many aspects of our routines slow down. However, it is usually during these warmer months that our skin is working overtime. To help give your skin a natural boost from the inside out we wanted to share four foods that have superpowers when it comes to preventing sun-damage and giving you a natural glow. These four foods are avocados, walnuts, broccoli, and dark chocolate!
1. Avocado – Avocados are loaded with healthy fats and antioxidants. They contain folate which helps repair cell damage and promote new cell growth, and Vitamin B which helps combat infections. Avocados can also help prevent sun damage due to their high ratio of Vitamin C and Vitamin E which scavenge free radicals. Sun damage amplifies wrinkles and stretch marks, so if we can prevent the damage then we prevent the effects of it! Avocados taste great when mixed into a salad, on top of toast or an English muffin, and mashed as guacamole.
2. Walnuts – Walnuts contain omega-3s which reduce inflammation plus one serving contains 8% of the daily values of zinc which helps your immune system function at its best and promotes wound healing. I love adding chopped walnuts to my oatmeal, salads, or baked goods.
3. Broccoli – Not only is broccoli a great source of vitamins and minerals but it also contains sulforaphane. Sulforaphane is a compound that protects against sun damage, has cancer-fighting properties, and can neutralize free radicals. It’s so beneficial it has even shown to increase collagen levels in your skin. You can add fresh sautéed broccoli to an egg scramble or omelet, eat it raw with your favorite veggie dip, or roast or steam it as a delicious side.
4. Dark Chocolate – Cocoa powder is high in antioxidants which have been shown to help thicken skin and help keep skin more hydrated. Participants in a study who consumed cocoa powder for 6-12 weeks were also less susceptible to sunburns and their skin was less scaly. The trick here is to make sure the dark chocolate you are consuming is at least 70% cocoa to maximize the benefits and minimize sugar consumption.
In summary: When your body is healthy, your skin is healthy! Eating foods with health-promoting properties will help keep you feeling great and help your skin fight sun damage.