What’s the one thing we all have in common? We’re getting older. With that said, most of us could use all the anti-aging help we can get!
Anti-aging solutions aren’t limited to skin care and supplements. Eating certain foods can also help slow the aging process and keep your skin looking younger, longer.
If you’re interested in getting the upper hand on aging, the easiest place to start is with your diet. Limit sugar and alcohol, while upping your intake of these seven youth-boosting foods.
Avocados are teeming with super-important nutrients for skin health. These fruits get their all-star status from healthy fats and vitamin E, both of which are necessary for the production of collagen and for promoting beautiful skin tone. Avocados are high in omega 3 fatty acids, which have been shown to play an anti-aging role in the skin. Plus, higher intakes of monounsaturated fats, like those found in avocados, avocado oil and olive oil, have been linked to increased skin elasticity. These nutrient powerhouses also contain potassium, vitamin K, folate, pantothenic acid, vitamin B6, niacin, riboflavin and vitamin C.
Anything high in antioxidants is good news for your skin and — According to the US Department of Agriculture — blueberries contain the highest amount of antioxidants per serving of any fruit. Antioxidants promote long-term skin health by working to neutralize free radicals and repair damage in the body.
Eggs contain two nutrients that are vital to skin health: choline and lutein. Choline fortifies the fatty portions of cell membranes that are responsible for smooth, healthy-looking skin. Choline also regulates the levels of B vitamins in our bodies, which are needed to produce skin-beneficial proteins (collagen and elastin). Lutein, found in egg yolks, is an antioxidant that guards skin elasticity, helping your complexion appear more supple.
Salmon, sardines and anchovies contain high amounts of dimethylaminoethanol (DMAE). DMAE protects skin by strengthening cell membranes and guarding against skin degradation, which can result in wrinkles, fine lines and other signs of aging. DMAE also boosts levels of a neutrotransmitter — acetylcholine — that promotes the appearance of toned, tight and firm skin, while decreasing production of arachidonic acid, which leads to lines, wrinkles and sagging skin.
Vitamin C, when consumed in fresh fruits and vegetables, has been shown to have positive impact on aging skin and discoloration. This antioxidant stimulates collagen production, causing skin renewal, less wrinkles and an overall healthier texture. A single grapefruit is the perfect way to get your daily dose of vitamin C, as it contains more than 100% of the recommended daily value. Other sources to add to your anti-aging plan: kiwifruit, strawberries, oranges, yellow bell peppers and broccoli.
Green leafy vegetables like broccoli, spinach and Brussels sprouts are rich in alpha lipoic acid (ALA), one of the best anti-agers around. It contains a high concentration of antioxidants that fight the free radicals that cause visible signs of aging. ALAs also provide anti-inflammatory benefits, working to lessen under-eye circles, puffiness and blotchiness.
Another way to prevent premature aging and, according to a study published in the Journal of Nutrition, help to protect skin from the damaging effects of the sun is to eat more lycopene-rich tomatoes. The body can process the antioxidant lycopene best after tomatoes are cooked, so focus your efforts on adding more tomato soups and sauces to your diet.
So, you’re getting older. The good news is, you don't need a magic pill to look and feel younger. All you need is a balanced, healthy diet that keeps your weight in check and contains nutrients that promote skin, gut and overall health.
Focus on whole, preferably organic foods, including the ones on our list. Give your body a much-needed break from food additives, pesticide residues, processed snacks and sugars that could prematurely age you from the inside out. With the right foods in your age-fighting arsenal, you can repair some of the damage incurred and prevent further damage from showing up on your skin.
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