Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Foods That Fight Sun Damage

We all know that wearing sunscreen is the best way to protect our skin from the sun's harmful rays.  You will find some of my favorites here.   But there are foods that we can eat more of to protect our skin from the inside out.  Many of these are so easy to incorporate into our diets every day.  Super healthy AND helpful.  Love it!

Green Tea:
I have always loved Green Tea. Besides its abilities to boost your immune system and speed up your metabolism, it also helps to soothe sunburns. Drinking one to two cups of this antioxidant-rich tea a day helps to reduce the redness of sunburn. 

Sweet Potatoes:
Sweet potatoes are packed to the brim with beta-carotene, so chow down this summer! Cancer-causing compounds called free radicals are the enemy when it comes to sun damage. They not only cause damage to skin cells, but also cells inside the body. One of the best ways to help your body fight off free radicals is through consuming a variety of antioxidant-rich foods. One of the major antioxidants is beta-carotene.

One of my favorite morning fruits.  Grapefruits are rich in lycopene and are a great way to minimize sun exposure.  Pink grapefruit and juice contains high levels of lycopene. There is almost a shield like role lycopene plays in protecting the skin from severe burn.   Can't beat that!

Garlic contains a natural compound called allicin, which has strong antioxidant and healing properties. Antioxidants fight off free radicals that enter your body from sun exposure, so eat your garlic.

Olive Oil:
Olive oil is not only great to use for cooking, it’s also an antioxidant-rich food that fights sun damage. One study actually proved that incorporating olive oil regularly into your diet can help to reduce reddening from sun exposure by 35%, according to an article from World’s Healthiest Foods.

Tomatoes are so abundant, taste so fresh in the summertime and a study, performed in 2001, looked at volunteers who ate 40 grams of tomato paste over a ten-week period. The group was forty percent less likely to experience sunburn when exposed to harmful UV rays.  Again, lycopene in the tomatoes is the shield.  But don’t forget to add a little olive oil to insure absorption of the special skin-protecting photochemical. 

So make sure you always have plenty of sunscreen on hand when going outside and include these skin healthy foods in your diet for an added boost.

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