What goes on inside the body is just as important as what occurs externally. For optimal cosmetic results, your immune system should be in the best shape possible. This will enable you to feel younger more vibrant, renewed and recharged! By following our SD Guide for Optimal Health you’ll be able to nourish and protect your investment.
Today, research shows that it’s possible to influence your looks simply by choosing specific foods. What you choose to eat will ultimately have an effect on hair growth, skin collagen production, hormone balance and more. It’s important to understand the benefits of eating whole foods because they contain tons of nutrients, phytochemicals and enzymes that work synergistically to help keep us healthy.
Here are our must-eats to help you get your glow on:
Fish that are high in omega-3 fatty acids have incredible beauty benefits, including glowing skin and shiny strands. About three percent of the hair shaft is made up of omega-3 fatty acids. They’re found in cell membranes on your scalp and in the natural oils that keep your scalp and hair hydrated. While salmon is usually the superstar choice, mackerel, sardines and anchovies are even better. Since these fish are at the bottom of the food chain, their lives are shorter, which means toxins such as mercury will not accumulate in them.
Red Bell Peppers
Did you know that red peppers contain far more skin-boosting vitamin C than oranges? Vitamin C is a pre-cursor to collagen production and is a prominent antioxidant. When light hits your skin, it creates free radicals. These bounce around inside your skin and lead to DNA damage, which results in aging. The antioxidants attach themselves to free radicals and neutralize them so that they cannot do damage. Loading up on red peppers will help keep your skin looking younger.
Not only does spinach give you strength, but it’s also a major anti-ager. It’s rich in beta carotene, which converts into the powerful anti-aging vitamin A. This nutrient is crucial for allowing proper moisture retention to the epidermis, helping to prevent wrinkles and remove dead skin. For premium absorption, pair spinach with a food that’s high in vitamin C. Try a squeeze of lemon in a homemade dressing drizzled over a spinach salad.
The water from coconuts is a great natural hydration aid and contains potassium, an electrolyte that helps move nutrients into our cells. Coconut oil, which is high in healthy fats, vitamins E, K and other minerals, is one of the best natural nutrients for your hair, boosting growth and shine by moisturizing the scalp. It’s also highly effective in reducing protein loss when used as a pre-wash conditioning treatment. Protein loss can leave strands weak and prone to damage. You can also try swapping vegetable oil for coconut oil when cooking. It has a high smoke point, which means it’s great for high-heat cooking.
We all got the message about the benefits of eating whole avocados; now it’s the oil that’s getting all the attention. Avocados contain good amounts of vitamins A, D and E and omega-9 fatty acids, which is one of the building blocks of healthy skin. When added to your diet regularly, all of these nutrients help to even out skin tone over time. Avocado oil has a high smoke point, so it’s versatile enough to use when sautéing or roasting veggies or as a drizzle on a cold summer soup.
Whether you enjoy them sunny side up for breakfast or boiled and sliced cold over a green salad, eggs are serious healthy-hair helpers. One of their key ingredients is sulfur, an essential nutrient that helps with everything from vitamin B absorption to liver function (your body’s detox organ). Sulfur is also necessary for the production of collagen and keratin, which help create and maintain shiny locks, strong nails and radiant skin.
Truly one of nature’s best medicines, garlic also helps prevent breakouts and maintain clear skin. To make the most of its naturally antibiotic compounds, it’s best to crush or chop garlic and leave it on the cutting board for a few minutes before cooking.
These nuts have omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, which help the body retain moisture, giving your mane a healthy-looking shine. The protein content of the walnuts helps boost hair follicles, making hair fuller and stronger.
Tomatoes are skincare superheroes, protecting you from sun damage thanks to their high antioxidant content. A recent study presented at The Royal Society of Medicine in London found that women who were given five tablespoons of standard tomato paste with 10 grams of olive oil every day for 12 weeks showed significant improvement in their skin’s ability to protect itself against UV damage.
These little wonders are packed with zinc, as well as vitamins A, C and K and omega-3 fatty acids, all of which are essential to building a healthy hair shaft. These nutrients are important for producing sebum, your skin’s natural oil, which protects and repairs skin.
All greens are great for our health, but collard greens are one of the most underappreciated. They are extremely high in vitamin C, a major antioxidant that fights toxins (just one cup provides 70 percent of the recommended daily allowance of vitamin C). If you’re trying to eat more raw meals, try this take on the traditional taco: mix ground walnuts with taco spice and a few dashes of tamari, top with salsa, and roll in raw collard leaves.
Hemp seeds are made up of 30 percent pure protein and a full range of amino acids and essential fatty acids needed to maintain your skin’s structure. You can sprinkle a spoonful on cereal, use hemp seed oil in dips, or add it to your morning smoothie. According to a study noted in the Journal of Dermatological Treatment, symptoms of skin dryness and itching significantly improved after consuming one to two tablespoons of hemp seed oil a day for 20 weeks.
This sweet treat is high in vitamin C and the enzyme bromelain, which is known to be an effective skin softener. Drinking pineapple juice and munching on the fruit help the body synthesize collagen, which supports skin structure, while vitamin C and amino acids aid in cell and tissue repair, giving you a youthful appearance. Add it to your morning smoothie for a refreshing treat.
These saltwater delicacies do wonders for hair, nails and skin. They’re a great source of dietary zinc, which is monumentally important for the growth and function of skin cells.
For the love of your locks, you need to eat more oats. They have high amounts of zinc, biotin, magnesium and potassium. A deficiency in these key nutrients can lead to brittle hair and breakage. For the perfect breakfast, we suggest making soaked oats in a jar: fill a small jar halfway with oats, top with your favorite milk (dairy, almond, coconut or soy) and spices (like cinnamon and nutmeg). Let it soak overnight in the fridge. In the morning, you can add berries, nuts and seeds for added nutritional value.
Natural, caffeine-free green tea provides your body with potent antioxidant defense which combats free radicals that occur from pollution, stress, smoke and other toxins. It also helps your DNA cell structures to support three dimensions of vitality that typically decline with age – physical vigor, mental acuity and sexual health. Additionally, green tea stimulates the body's ability to neutralize and remove cellular waste and toxic byproducts.