Antioxidants are one of the most important elements for maintaining healthy skin, and eating blueberries is one of the easiest (and yummiest) ways to get them. Antioxidants help fight and neutralise free radicals – one of skin’s worst enemies – which are known to damage skin cells and collagen, causing wrinkles, dry skin, and a range of other skin-ageing factors.
Blueberries are also full of vitamin A, which helps balance oil levels in your skin, and is very helpful in naturally clearing up acne-prone skin. In addition, blueberries are rich sources of vitamin C, which is crucial for the formation of collagen, thereby giving skin its structure and elasticity. Other superfood berries for healthy skin include raspberries and blackcurrants. Add some to plain yoghurt, with some chopped nuts.
Lemon one of our favourite superfoods for healthy skin. Not only is it packed with vitamin C, which helps neutralise nasty free radicals and helps us make collagen and elastin, giving us firm, younger-looking skin; but it’s also one of the most alkalising foods available.
Although lemons taste incredibly acidic, once metabolised, the minerals in them help alkalise the blood and balance our bodies’ pH (which in most of us is too acidic due to over consumption of coffee, alcohol, and processed foods). When our bodies’ pH levels are out of whack, our skin becomes super sensitive, dry and irritation-prone, so maintaining a good balance is crucial. We like squeezing half a lemon into a glass of water every morning to kick start our day.
Vegetables such as carrots, squash, pumpkin and sweet potatoes contain particularly high levels of beta carotene, and other carotenoids, which give them their orange colour. Beta carotene converts to vitamin A in our body, which is one of the most important nutrients for keeping skin firm and helping it to heal quickly.
The oil in pumpkin seeds is also high in zinc, which is important in collagen synthesis. These orange vegetables are delicious in stews and soups in the winter, or roasted with other vegetables such as peppers, red onions and beetroot.
Oily fish in general, and salmon in particular, is packed full of omega 3’s, a good fat that does wonders for your skin. These polyunsaturated fatty acids protect the skin from sun exposure, help repair already damaged skin, and keep cell membranes healthy and hydrated, keeping toxins out and your skin looking supple and soft. Other fatty fish include sardines, mackerel and trout.
Adding a healthy dose of these delicious ingredients to your diet could mean the difference between average-looking skin and a glowing radiant complexion. We find that these superfoods do wonders for keeping skin healthy – with the bonus of adding variety, colour and deliciousness to our diet.