Last week I asked the lovely Lauren Kurtz to share her top natural sunscreens. But what we put on our skin isn’t the whole solution. What we put IN our bodies can actually help to reduce damage from the sun. I’ve let the sun abuse me in the past and am now super careful about what I put on and in my body. Following are my top five foods to prevent your skin from sun damage. Find a way to incorporate some of these foods into your life each day. These antioxidant-rich foods are literally food for your skin!
- Goji berries – goji berries help to prevent skin aging and reduce inflammation due to sun damage. Gojis contain astaxanthin, a phytonutrient known for its natural sunscreen benefits; astaxanthin helps to prevent and repair sun damage. If you’ll be out in the sun this summer, be sure you’re eating gojis! The antioxidant vitamins A, C and E also help to prevent aging.
- Watermelon – it’s rich in lycopene, a carotenoid that’s been found to protect the skin from sun damage and skin cancer. Watermelon is said to boost your skin’s SPF by about 3. See below for an amazing recipe that features both goji berries and watermelon.
- Brazil nuts – selenium, a mineral found in Brazil nuts, is one of the most potent antioxidant nutrients out there! Selenium helps to prevent free radicals from forming after sun exposure, and also helps to even out skin tone. Brazil nuts are also a good source of antioxidant vitamin E, which also helps to reduce sun damage. Just four Brazil nuts daily will provide you with the recommended amount of selenium! Put them in a fancy trail mix and you’ll never be without! Fish such as salmon also contain selenium and vitamin E, so be sure to grill some up at your next bbq.
- Green tea – the polyphenols found in green tea can increase the skin’s antioxidant protection. Green tea also helps to fight inflammation in the skin. Do yourself a favour and make my Bulletproof Matcha Latte. Beat the heat by using cold water instead of the hot and you’ll have yourself a fancy iced version.
- Dark chocolate – its antioxidants can actually help to protect our skin from sun damage and skin cancer. I suppose there’s no more delicious way to support our skin than with chocolate. Try sipping this antioxidant-rich smoothie, which also contains goji berries.
Drink up some SPF with this rehydrating and antioxidant-rich beverage! It’s adapted from one of a teacher’s recipes.
- 1 tbsp goji berries, soaked in 1 cup of water for an hour or so
- 1 cup fresh watermelon
- 1 tbsp lemon or lime juice
- honey to taste
- water to thin
- Add the soaked gojis and their liquid into a blender with the other ingredients. Blend on high until smooth, adding water to your desired consistency.
Also, don’t forget your natural sunblock.
Wishing you beautiful skin free from damage. xo Andrea