Squeeze in citrus fruits. Oranges, grapefruits, kiwis and strawberries are powerful skin savers, rejuvenators and protectors with their high levels of vitamin C. Vitamin C reduces inflammation (that leads to acne), protects collagen breakdown (that leads to wrinkles) and even repairs sun damage (that leads to age spots). Go for fresh varieties rather than juice, which can be high in sugar, a substance you need to avoid for your skin’s sake.
Fruits that are rich in color, like blueberries, blackberries and raspberries, contain higher levels of antioxidants than more mildly colored fruits and veggies. Antioxidants play interference by binding to free radicals before they can cause damage that leads to dull, lifeless skin. With winter here, fresh berries may be in short supply, so opt for the frozen variety that you can blend into a smoothie to get your daily dose.
Poultry such as turkey or chicken helps boost collagen internally. Collagen is a protein found in our skin, bones, cartilage, tendons and tissues that add valuable support to skin cells. At about age 35, natural production of good-quality collagen starts to taper off, so it’s important to eat high-quality proteins to replenish it.
Pair your poultry with green vegetables (like spinach and kale) to double-up on collagen production and protection. The high dose of vitamin C in green veggies boosts the immune system and promotes tissue growth.
Nuts contain a good dose of omega-3 fatty acids, which are necessary for cellular repair. Grab a handful (but no more to keep your calorie consumption in check) or sprinkle some chopped walnuts on a salad, oatmeal or low-cal frozen yogurt. If you’re allergic to nuts, choose another omega-3-rich food every day, like olive oil, salmon or avocados. Omega-3-rich foods even strengthen the skin’s natural sun-barrier function.
Green tea is a powerhouse beverage and is chocked full of antioxidants that ward off free radicals that damage the skin. Green tea is also believed to play a role in weight loss and blood pressure reduction.