What comes to mind when I mention the words “food” and “beauty” in the same sentence?
You probably thought “weight loss,” didn’t you? Well, beauty is about more than just weight. For example, some specific foods can boost your beauty by keeping your skin healthy. To keep yourself looking young and vibrant, start with these foods:
Blackberries should take center stage in your smoothies or on top of your cereal. Why? Blackberries have consistently received high ORAC scores (these scores measure total antioxidant absorbance capacity) year after year. They provide an anti-inflammatory effect for your skin that helps keep it youthful and radiant.
2. Sweet potatoes
Don’t limit sweet potato season to fall — include them in your diet all year. Sweet potatoes are a great source of vitamin A, which helps with cell turnover. This process is a must for your face because dead cells and lack of cell turnover can cause a dull skin tone.
3. Chia seed
Chia seed is a great source of omega-3 fatty acids, which are beneficial for healthy skin, hair and nails. Use chia seed in muffins, stews and other recipes as a substitute for unhealthy fats. Bonus: It adds moisture and thickness to your favorite foods.
Tofu isn’t just a source of lean protein — it also helps you avoid wrinkles. As an added benefit, tofu contains isoflavones, a class of organic compounds with a strong antioxidant capacity. Researchers believe that isoflavones may help prevent the breakdown of collagen, a protein that supports the skin, connective tissue and bones.
What’s not to like about a tasty treat that’s sweet and good for you? Watermelon contains lycopene, a colorful plant pigment with powerful antioxidant properties that may improve your beauty by encouraging smoother skin.
Cocoa is a flavonoid superstar. The more flavonoids in your diet, the better. These naturally occurring plant pigments help fight off damaging free radicals. Researchers have found that a nutrient in cocoa called epicatechin helps improve skin texture. The authors explained that epicatechin increases blood flow to the skin, boosting nutrient and oxygen supply — both essential factors for keeping skin healthy.
Brigid Titgemeier, BA contributed to this article.