Get summer perfect skin with these foods
Summer comes with a host of issues including very high UV index, hot winds and exposure to air conditioning for long hours. The high UV index causes photo-damage, while the hot winds and long exposure to air-conditioning units causes dehydration of the skin. This combination can be disastrous for the skin and can have long lasting effects.
Looking after the skin regularly is important in combating this damage but what we consume, also affects the skin. Here are a few ‘super-foods’ which when consumed have beneficial effects on the skin and can make the skin glow, give it a soft texture and also reduce the signs of ageing.
1. Carotene containing fruits:
Fruits and vegetables which are yellow-orange in colour like carrots and pumpkins and green coloured vegetables like spinach are very rich in beta carotene. Beta carotene is pro vitamin A and had been shown to reduce the signs of UV damage on the skin. A high dose of beta carotene can also reduce the signs of photo-ageing like fine lines and wrinkles on the skin.
2. Lycopene rich foods:
Tomatoes, papayas and watermelons (found abundantly in the summer season) are rich sources of the anti-oxidant lycopene. Lycopene when consumed gets preferentially concentrated in the skin where it absorbs the UV light and can protect the skin from potential UV damage. It is better absorbed by the body when it is in the pureed form and studies show that eating 1Ž2 to 1 cup of tomato paste or pureed tomatoes can potentially reduce UV damage by up to 30%.
3. Green tea:
Green tea has a high amount of catechins and proanthocyanidins which have significant anti-oxidant action. When consumed, green tea can slow down the signs of ageing and the proanthocyanidins can also help reduce skin pigmentation. The extra fluid intake also helps in summers by keeping the skin hydrated. An added benefit would be to keep the used green tea bags in the refrigerator and place them on the eyes at night. Not only is it relaxing, the anti-oxidants released locally on the skin and the cold temperature can help to reduce the puffiness under the eyes.
This fruit is widely found in summers. This is a rich source of dietary fibre and an anti-oxidant called punicalagin. The anti-oxidant helps reduce free radical damage and hence slows down the ageing process. The dietary fibre aids digestion and helps lower cholesterol. It may also aid in weight loss and in shedding flab. Also, pomegranates reduce the stress levels, which we all know is a major factor in the ageing process.
5. Red wine:
Red wine is rich in resavertrol. This works as a powerful anti-oxidant and slows down the ageing process. It also is healthy for the heart. Studies have shown that regular consumption of small amounts of red wine can reduce the risks of cardiac events.
Cod is very rich in selenium. This essential mineral is required for production of glutathione in the body. Glutathione works as an anti-oxidant and also prevents pigmentation of the skin. Eating cod regularly may be an alternative to taking glutathione supplements.
So, this summer, eat your way towards a healthy skin. After all, ‘We are what we eat’.
Inputs by The Skin Center