Looking for that summer glow? Eat your way to healthier, more youthful looking skin this summer by including these foods in your diet. By Nutritionist and GoodnessMe Box Health Editor Melissa Fine.
We love our salmon at GoodnessMe Box HQ – the superfood of the sea, its naturally rich flavour is thanks to its omega-3 content, an essential fatty acid that cannot be synthesised by the body and so we need to obtain it from food.
Amongst its many benefits, omega-3 can enhance skin health by improving blood flow and in turn providing your skin with more oxygen.
Omega-3 is also an integral part of cell membranes, where it mediates how our skin cells behave. Alongside encouraging cell turnover and rehydrating the skin, omega-3 removes waste products from the cells and transports beneficial nutrients in.
Also involved in bringing down inflammation in the body, omega-3 can be a helpful nutrient for alleviating eczema and psoriasis, both inflammatory skin conditions.
But don’t just stick to salmon – Mix things up by eating a variety of oily fish. Sardines are awesome because they’re extremely sustainable. Mackerel is great too…and while I love my seared tuna, I wouldn’t eat this on a daily basis due to its mercury content, which can build up to toxic levels in the body if consumed too often.
Chia oil is a great plant food to include in your diet if you’re not a fan of salmon or sardines. Along with walnuts and flaxseeds, chia is the next best source of omega-3 after oily fish, so can be worth adding to your diet if you’re a vegetarian.
Even if you do eat oily fish, it’s still worth including omega-3 rich oils like chia oil in your diet due to the high consumption of omega-6 rich vegetable oils in the Western world. While we need omega-6 (it’s an essential fatty acid), when consumed in excess to omega-3 it can push omega-3 out of the cells and encourage inflammation.
Why chia oil over chia seeds? I’m a fan of chia seeds too, but unless you soak or blend your chia seeds, the oil can be easier to absorb as it’s less likely to go straight though you like the seeds can (in which case they’re more of a fibre supplement).
What does chia oil taste like? Mild in flavour, you can add chia oil to your smoothie, porridge or salad dressing without changing the taste – not exactly something you can do with liquid fish oil!
We’ve also been using the topical Chia Oil from Goodness Natural Beauty Lab in preparation for summer at GoodnessMe Box HQ – Lightweight and slippery, it absorbs quickly instead of just sitting on your skin like so many beauty oils tend to. Treat your skin from the outside in
A balanced wholefood snack, almonds are also an excellent source of skin-loving vitamin E. A powerful antioxidant, vitamin E helps protect the cells on our skin’s outer layer (the epidermis) from environmental damage.
If you’re bored of snacking on plain raw almonds, try dry roasted tamari almonds for something different and salty, or my favourite – natural almond butter, which pretty much goes with anything (try it with apple slices or stirred through your banana porridge).
If your skin is looking a bit too pale and translucent, you may want to take a look at your red meat intake. Just two small 100g serves (grass-fed or organic if possible) can put the colour back in your cheeks.
If you’re a vegetarian, make sure you’re eating plenty of plant foods rich in non-haem iron – lentils, dried fruit and blackstrap molasses are all good sources and are better-absorbed if eaten with a vitamin C rich food (like citrus fruit).
Who needs a fake tan when snacking on carrots can have the same effect? Carrots, as well as butternut squash and sweet potato are rich in carotenoids, a plant compound which can make dull skin glow…now who feels like some sweet potato fries?
Goodness Natural Beauty Certified Organic Chia Seed Oil. Find out more: www.goodnessproducts.com