We spent $426 billion dollars on beauty products last year, lathering, slathering, toning and honing our skin and hair to look their best. Instead of just concentrating on what we’re putting on our bodies, it’s a smart idea to give as much consideration to what we’re putting in them. As a bonus, we’re heading into the “late Spring, early Summer” growing season, when you can find most of these suggested beautifying vegetables and fruits fresh from the field in your local farmer’s markets.
First of all, drink up. Proper hydration – sipping at least eight glasses a day of pure water – is essential for getting, and nourishing, both inner health and outer beauty. A quick test from the National Institute of Health to check if you’re dehydrated is to gently pinch the skin on the back of your hand for a few seconds, then let go. If the skin immediately returns to normal, you’re fine. But if a ridge is formed and takes a second or two to disappear, start drinking that water.
For beautiful skin:
All fruits and vegetables with lots of Vitamin C will promote collagen production and reduce wrinkles.
Bring on the blueberries, which are ranked first among the 40 most popular fruits and vegetables in antioxidant activity.
Grapefruit is particularly beneficial – its high lycopene content protects skin from free radicals, which age us.
Tomatoes are another lycopene-rich food. Their effectiveness is increased when they’re cooked, so think “spaghetti sauce” or “tomato soup.”
As its name implies, watermelon is a true hydrator. The fruit is 92% water, so it’s guaranteed to plump up skin, and is a powerhouse in the lycopene and Vitamin C categories. Don’t forget the high fiber and nutrient content.
Nuts are rich in Vitamin E. Almonds have a lot of this potent antioxidant, along with flavonoids, and a small handful a day is great for smooth, healthy skin. Almonds are also good for reversing free radical and oxidative damage caused by smoking.
Bell peppers – all colors – are loaded with Vitamin C, and promote collagen production for healthy hair and skin.
For Sun Protection
Sweet potatoes help clear up acne, but their high beta-carotene content also helps protect skin from the sun. As an extra bonus, the orange vegetable is a potent anti-inflammatory.
Citrus fruits, green tea, carrots, red peppers, spinach and walnuts also all help guard against sunburn.
For Healthy Eyes
Sure, you already know carrots help your eyesight, but spinach is packed with Vitamins B, C and E, and also lutein, which is essential for healthy eyes. Don’t forget its potassium, calcium, iron, magnesium and omega 3 fatty acids.
You can also find significant amounts of lutein in corn, peas, zucchini, broccoli, and Brussels sprouts.
Walnuts boast an abundance of omega 3 fatty acids to nourish not only eyes, but skin and hair too.
For Strong Bones and Teeth
Kiwis provide Vitamin C and antioxidants to grow healthy bones and teeth while protecting you from cancer and heart disease.
Spinach, collard greens, kelp, oranges, broccoli and broccoli sprouts, sesame seeds, Brazil nuts and celery are also loaded with calcium for a healthy bone booster.
It’s important to point out that supplements really can’t effectively provide the nutritional value your body and skin require. You’re smarter going with the whole food, and ideally, the organic version.
Learn more about how smart food choices enhance your physical appearance while you cleanse your body, quiet your mind and rejuvenate your spirit at the Optimum Health Institute in San Diego and Austin, Texas. We can help you achieve your mental, physical, emotional and spiritual goals for optimal health. Visit our website at www.optimumhealth.org , and call us at (800) 993-4325 to make your reservation.