Tag Archives: antioxidents

10 Foods That Make Your Skin Glow

There are bookoos of products out there to exfoliate, slough, moisturize, lift, revitalize, invigorate … your skin. You could spend a mortgage plus lots of precious time in pursuit of perfection from a bottle. They’ve got one thing right – we do have a lot of control over the way skin looks and feels. But there’s a simpler fix than a chemical peel. Before you go spend a fortune on products, evaluate your grocery list. Good skin starts with diet. Skin cells are constantly dying, shedding and making new ones. The foods you eat provide the building materials for healthy skin cells. So each day is sort of like a fresh start for better looking skin. Give your body what it needs and it will return the favor. With these good for your skin foods you’re on your way to glowing…

1. Green tea – antioxidents in green tea eliminate cancer-causing free radicals, it reduces inflammation which makes skin look puffy and red, and reactivates dying cells

2. Salmon – essential fatty acids in salmon make up our cell membranes and keep them strong and functioning properly to keep out harmful substances, allow nutrients in and move waste out of our cells. Omega-3 fatty acids reduce inflammation

3. Blueberries – antioxidents and phytochemicals eliminate inflammation and free radicals

4. Carrots – vitamin A is required for building new, healthy skin cells

5. Avocado – good fat, with essential oils that soothe red skin

6. Almonds – vitamin E moisturizes skin and protects against premature aging

7. Mango – vitamin A repairs damaged skin cells and helps build new ones

8. Spinach (or anything else green and leafy) – vitamins, minerals and phytochemicals to oxygenate skin cells and improve circulation

9. Walnuts – Omega-3 fatty acids counter act inflammation to keep skin from looking red and puffy

10. Water – keep cells hydrated and move out toxins

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Lessons From a Caveman: The Anti-Inflammatory Diet

Cavemen had it easy. They didn’t have the temptation of sweet potato fries, or Dairy Queen Blizzards, or margaritas. All they had to eat were nuts, berries and seeds; lean meat; fish and plant foods. Their primitive diet struck the perfect balance of anti-inflammatory Omega-3s and pro-inflammatory Omega-6s. What does today’s “caveman” diet look like? Steak. Potato. Bread. The scales are tipped in one clear direction. In a span of a few hundred-thousand years, from hunting and gathering to the fast food industry, our pro to anti-inflammation ratio has gone from 1:1 to a bloated 30:1. Say, “Do I look swollen?”

It might be another story if McDonald’s got its start selling salmon and spinach Happy Meals. But the reality is most of the foods and fast food we eat are processed and fatty. And the more we eat, the more inflammation builds up in the body. It’s what causes aches and pains and leads to allergies, asthma, autoimmune diseases, heart disease and Alzheimer’s. Of course inflammation speeds up the aging process in general too. Hello, wrinkles. So when you hear of the powerful antioxidents in blueberries, or the wonders of green tea, or the new superfood – acai, or whatever is touted as the next season’s fountain of youth …  it all comes down to the food’s ability to fight inflammation.

The trick is to eat less of the really pro-inflammatory stuff (processed foods, sugar, red meat…) and more of the anti-inflammatory stuff (veggies, nuts, fish, whole grains…). Go primitive. In your diet that is. No loin clothes.
I like to think that if I can strike a balance, I’m in good shape. The good cancels out the bad, right? Do the math: 1 Butterfinger Blizzard + 6 oz. salmon + 1 Spinach salad + 1/4 cup blueberries = 0. That’s a wash. 

Here’s a quick list of some inflammation fighters:
nuts (almonds, walnuts, cashews)
avocados
fish (wild-caught salmon)
olive oil
dark leafy greens (spinach, mixed greens)
whole grains (brown rice)
broccoli/cauliflower
berries (blueberries, strawberries, raspberries)
tomatoes
tea (green)

And some inflammation instigators:
butter/margarine
sugar
full-fat dairy
red meat
high-fructose corn syrup
vegetable oils (corn, cottonseed, safflower and sunflower oils)
wheat flour (white bread)
packaged snack foods
coffee

For a visual, check out Dr. Weil’s Anti-Inflammatory Food Pyramid.

Want more? Read: Jack Challem’s “The Inflammation Syndrome”

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