In my role as a member of their Brain Trust, I spoke to NewBeauty Magazine about the Top 5 Fall Foods that we should be eating for better skin in a recent interview…
Fall is one of my favourite times of year for fresh produce, and one of the benefits of eating seasonally is Mother Nature provides us exactly what we need for optimum health and wellbeing as the seasons change. In regards to beauty foods, Fall brings us an abundance of antioxidant rich, free radical fighting produce that helps repair damage from UV exposure that we may have suffered during the summer.
1) Pumpkin: Whilst it may be #FallBasic, pumpkin is an antioxidant, anti-inflammatory powerhouse that we should all be including in our diets at this time of year. The compound that gives pumpkin its vibrant orange color is beta-carotene, which our bodies convert to Vitamin A. Vitamin A is a potent antioxidant that is essential for healthy and vibrant skin, hair and nails. Pumpkins are also a rich source of potassium, a mineral that can help alkalize the body and reduce water retention. However, please note that your typical Pumpkin Spice Latte is not going to contain any of these beauty boosting ingredients, and instead is usually packed full of skin aging sugar and inflammatory dairy. Skip this skin saboteur and instead use fresh or canned pumpkin in soups, stews or smoothies for maximum beauty benefits. Or you could try these fun Low Carb Pumpkin Peanut Butter Muffins from my Lean & Clean program – grab the recipe here.
2) Pumpkin Seeds: Pumpkin seeds are also an incredible beauty booster due to their high levels of zinc. Zinc is an anti-inflammatory mineral that can prevent acne and breakouts. Pumpkin seeds also contain manganese, a trace mineral that is essential for skin repair and healing and monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids which can help keep your skin looking plump and youthful. Add a couple of tablespoons of pumpkin seeds to your salad, or lightly toast and use as a crunchy garnish for seasonal soups. They are also a star ingredient in my Herby Detox Crackers – grab the recipe here.
3) Red Cabbage: Red cabbage is a rich source of polyphenols, especially anthocyanins (which give it that vibrant purple color), compounds that are potent free radical fighters that help to combat the enzymes that break down connective tissue in the skin. It also contains high levels of Vitamin C, an antioxidant that is also a necessary cofactor for collagen production. Try it thinly sliced in a salad or slaw, or even roasted in the oven in coconut oil for a skin soothing side dish. Alternatively try fermented red cabbage for its gut healing benefits – I love Wildbrine’s Red Beet and Kraut that you can find out more about here.
4) Apples: Apples are one of our lowest sugar fruits, and are packed full of antioxidant compounds such as quercetin, catechin and phloridzin which help to reduce free radical and DNA damage to your skin cells. They are also high in a specific soluble fiber called pectin that can help lower blood glucose levels (high blood glucose levels = premature skin aging). For maximum beauty benefits eat the skin too as this is where the majority of the micronutrients are found. Get the recipe for my Layered Apple Pie Smoothie here.
5) Kale: If you got a little too much sun this summer consider adding kale to your morning smoothie as it contains vitamins A, C and K which can help counteract sun damage. It is actually ranked as one of the highest free radical fighting vegetables (second is spinach) and also contains sulforaphane, which helps to boost the body’s detoxification enzymes. Always consume kale with some kind of fat to ensure maximum vitamin absorption, such as in a green smoothie with avocado, or in a salad with extra virgin olive oil like this Easy Kale Salad with Green Goddess Dressing .
Want to know more about supplements for beauty? You’ll love this blog post!