Though we often hear that you are what you eat, perhaps we don’t realize just how true it is, like literally. One of the clearest ways to see how good food is for your body, is through your skin. When you go out drinking one weekend, your skin dries up. When you eat too much low-quality Easter candy, your forehead breaks out. But, what about foods that you can eat to improve the look of your skin, foods that boost the collagen production of your body and help your skin look healthier, younger? Those are plentiful, too.
Pile hot green peppers into your chilis and soups. This vitamin C powerhouse, with 242 milligrams per each 3.5 ounce serving, is great for your skin. As with most fruits and veggies, the vitamin and mineral content of hot peppers decreases with cooking. Chop them up raw and throw them in salads or salsas, or pickle them and use them as a condiment.
You should be eating fish once a week anyway for the omega 3 fatty acids that help with brain development, but omega 3s are also great for your skin and hair. The acids help with skin renewal and production, so pick fish — like salmon and mackerel — that have a high percentage of these good-for-you fats. Of course, source out the most sustainable options.
You may already know that orange vegetables like carrots and sweet potatoes have a high percentage of vitamin A, but did you know that the soon-to-be-seasonal summer favorite canteloupe is chock full of it as well? Chop up some canteloupe with yogurt or cottage cheese for a collagen-boosting breakfast.
Drinking white tea helps to protect the skin from further damage, preventing the activity of enzymes that break down collagen as we age. Drink white tea in the morning to counteract aging and to help with hydration, an important part of keeping skin young!
Kidney beans help your body to produce hyaluronic acid, an anti-aging substance, which helps keep the collagen in your skin. Add the beans to your organic power salad, or make a smooth and sweet red bean paste to add to desserts, by replacing traditional beans with this easy-to-find American staple.
image: Anibal Toro Photography