Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Article # 413. Foods to make your skin glow


Are you feeling your skin getting dried and looking Odd, try out these tips and enjoy the benefits to keep your skin glow and prevent premature aging.
Simply follow this four-step plan to brush away the months of neglect. So what are you waiting for? Lose weight, firm up and look fabulous.
Consuming too much junk and prepackaged food will not only result in weight gain but also a pasty complexion and hair that are lifeless.
These are the kind of problems that even the most expensive skin creams, vitamin supplements and hair products cannot resolve.
However, glowing skin and glossy hair can be yours in days - and you don't have to spend a fortune on potions and pills. All you have to do is eat the foods your body needs to look its best.
If you have been making the changes to your diet advised over the first two days of this series, you will already be on the way to improving your looks. However, there are certain foods that are well worth including in your diet if you want to get trim and exude natural beauty on the beach.


Essential Fatty Acids
Essential Fatty Acids (EFAs) come in two classes, Omega-3 and Omega-6, and it is the former that have the most effect on skin and hair condition. The body cannot make EFAs, so they have to come from our food. Ideally, they should account for 15 per cent of our calorie intake.
Oily fish such as sardines, tuna and salmon are good sources of EFAs, as are nuts and seeds and their oils, organic eggs, prawns and soya beans. A quick way to increase your intake is to use sesame, rapeseed, walnut, soya bean or flax oils in the kitchen.
At the same time, you should reduce your intake of saturated and processed fats because these can cancel out the beneficial effects of EFAs.


Antioxidants
Not only can they protect us from minor infections, but antioxidant nutrients (which include vitamins A, C and E, some of the B complex vitamins, the minerals selenium, manganese and zinc, and certain enzymes) can also help prevent more serious, degenerative diseases such as cancer and heart disease.
Antioxidants play a major role in destroying free radicals - electrochemically unbalanced molecules that are continually generated within our bodies by chemicals, too much sun and stress.
The main victim of free radical damage in skin is collagen, which keeps skin looking plump and elastic. Uncooked, highly coloured fresh fruit and vegetables are the best places to find high levels of antioxidants.
Choose from: berries (strawberries, raspberries, blackcurrants); black grapes; Brazil nuts; broccoli; carrots; cherries; chestnuts; hazelnuts; kale; raisins; papaya; peas; peppers; prunes; spinach; sweet potatoes and tomatoes.
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Vitamin A
Involved in forming new skin cells, vitamin A helps keep skin supple and is vital for healthy eyes and hair. Dry, flaky skin can indicate a deficiency.
Best sources: Whole milk and butter, liver, oily fish and eggs. It can also be manufactured by the body from beta-carotene.
Vitamin E
An antioxidant, this works with selenium and has a powerful action against free radical damage. It also helps the skin retain moisture. Premature wrinkles, pale skin, acne, easy bruising and slow wound healing may indicate a deficiency.
Best sources: Vegetable oils, nuts and seeds, peanut butter, wheat germ, whole grains, avocados and sweet potatoes.
Beta-carotene
This is the plant form of vitamin A, which the body converts as required. It helps to protect us against the ageing effects of sunlight.
Best sources: Dark green vegetables (spinach, broccoli, watercress) and orange fruit and vegetables (apricots, mangoes, sweet potatoes, pumpkin and tomatoes).
Selenium
Protects cells from free radical damage and helps counter dry skin. Works with vitamin E to support the immune system, so can help fight infection.
Best sources: Cereals, meat, offal, seafood, cheese, eggs, mushrooms, Brazil nuts, molasses, beans, wholegrains and wheatgerm.
Vitamin B Complex
B vitamins help to release energy from food for skin metabolism and have a role in keeping skin moist and smooth.
Best sources: Milk, oily fish, poultry, red meat, offal, eggs, bananas, soya beans, whole grains, wheat germ, peanut butter, fortified breakfast cereals.
Zinc
Vital to the immune system and the manufacture of collagen, zinc also speeds up healing. Lack of zinc can lead to stretch marks and stubborn blemishes.  A dull complexion, white spots on fingernails, and dandruff are signs of deficiency.
Best sources: Seafood, red meat, offal, turkey, cheese, brewer's yeast, eggs, nuts, whole grains and mushrooms.
Vitamin C
A potent antioxidant, vitamin C is essential for the production of collagen, the elastic tissue in skin that declines with age. Smoking, stress and sun exposure can drain vitamin C from the skin, leaving it vulnerable to damage.
Best sources: Peppers, potatoes, peas, kiwi fruit, strawberries and tomatoes.
Iron
Important for the formation of haemoglobin, the red pigment in blood.  A pale complexion and dark circles under the eyes may indicate a deficiency.
Best sources: Red meat, liver, seafood, eggs. Less absorbable iron is found in green leafy vegetables, dried apricots and fortified cereals.



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