These days, anti-ageing toiletries seem more like food than cosmetics, with everything from pomegranate to green tea being infused into them. However, these toiletries are no substitute for eating the foods that will nourish your skin from the inside out. So, before you splash out on expensive anti-ageing cosmetics, consider these simple dietary changes, which have been scientifically proven to help keep skin looking younger for longer:
Fruit and vegetables are rich in Vitamin C, which is essential for collagen synthesis. Collagen is a protein that gives skin its strength and elasticity. Unfortunately, collagen production declines with age. According to research published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, women over 40 with the highest amounts of vitamin C in their diet were 11% less likely to develop wrinkles than those with low levels. Good sources of Vitamin C include: limes, strawberries, oranges, sweet potatoes, broccoli, and tomatoes. A daily smoothie is a great way to increase your intake of fruit and vegetables.
Almonds are a rich source of Vitamin E. Vitamin E is a key antioxidant in the skin, helping to promote skin elasticity, and reduce wrinkles. If you’re not keen on whole almonds try almond butter instead.
Omega 3 fatty acids reduce your skin’s inflammatory response to toxins and ultraviolet light. This ultimately leads to fewer wrinkles. Good sources of omega 3 include flaxseeds, pumpkin seeds, chia seeds, hemp seeds and walnuts.
A study of 4,025 women found that those who ate more carbohydrates increased their risk of wrinkles by 36%. Carbohydrates are broken down into simple sugars called glucose, and absorbed into the bloodstream. Excess glucose in the bloodstream causes a process known as glycation. This is where glucose combines with proteins like collagen, changing its structure. As a result, the skin becomes saggy and wrinkly.
A UK study has shown that eating a couple of squares of dark chocolate every day helps to prevent wrinkles caused by ultraviolet light in the sun’s rays. This is due to the high content of antioxidants known as flavanols in dark chocolate. Choose a very dark chocolate – ideally 90%. You could also try cacao nibs.
Several studies have shown that catechins may protect the skin from sun damage and wrinkles. Catechins are antioxidants found in various plants especially in the leaves of the tea plant. Black tea, green tea and white tea are all derived from the same plant. However, they are processed differently and this process determines their antioxidant content. White tea undergoes very little processing and therefore retains the highest concentrations of catechins. To maximise the beneficial compounds in white tea brew your tea, covered for five minutes.
So there you have it – a plethora of amazing tips to keep your skin looking youthful and glowing. We hope they work for you! If you enjoyed this – you might like 10 Healthy Snack Ideas from a Nutritionist.
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