Anti-aging. Clarifying. Anti-stress. Acne fighting. Youíre bombarded with loads of products that promise to do the same thing Ė give you healthy skin. Why cover yourself over and over with washes, creams, exfoliators and moisturizers that have ingredients you canít even pronounce? Next time you want clear skin, head to your grocery store.
There are plenty of reasons to hit the grocery store that donít include dinner! In those aisles are certain foods that have powerhouse ingredients to keep your skin healthy and smooth Ė foods that can even help fight age-related damage.
Here are five foods that you can eat and even smooth on your face and body! Before trying anything new on your skin, we recommend doing a skin-patch test first and waiting 24 hours to see if you have an allergic reaction.
Strawberries. These red berries have more anti-aging vitamin C per serving than oranges and grapefruits. Research shows that a diet rich in vitamin C can lead to fewer wrinkles and less age-related dry skin. Vitamin C fights free radicals that can damage cells and break down collagen, leading to those fine lines no one wants.
Create a strawberry smoothie mask Ė drink it or apply it! In a food processor or blender, combine one cup of strawberries, frozen or fresh. Stir the berries with one cup of plain or vanilla yogurt and 1Ĺ tablespoons of honey (a great moisturizer). Pour in a cup and enjoy or smooth it on your face and leave for eight minutes before rinsing it off.
Olive oil. Ancient Romans massaged olive oil into their skin because it resulted in smoother, more radiant skin. Consuming it provides antioxidants to disarm free radicals, reduce inflammation and head off wrinkling and sagging in the skin.
During dinner, eat whole-grain bread dipped in some extra-virgin oil olive to improve your skin from the inside out. Or just take a pea-size amount of extra-virgin olive oil and dab it on your lips to hydrate them. Use it on rough skin patches like your elbows and heels as needed.
Green tea. Thereís nothing like curling up with a cup of hot tea. Filled with inflammation-fighting antioxidants, itís believed that green tea may also reduce your risk of skin cancer.
Chill damp teabags and put them on your eyes for 10 to 15 minutes. Green tea contains tannins, which act as an astringent when applied to your skin, helping to reduce puffiness. Get an antioxidant boost by drinking the green stuff every day.
Pumpkin. Itís not just for Halloween! Pumpkins get their orange hue from carotenoids, wrinkle-fighting plant pigments that help neutralize free radicals in the skin. In addition, they are filled with vitamins C, E and A and also include plenty of enzymes that help cleanse the skin.
Smooth it on: In a blender, combine two cups of canned pumpkin, four tablespoons of low-fat vanilla yogurt, four tablespoons of honey and one teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice. Leave it on for 10 minutes and rinse! If this sounds good enough to eat, you can! Just add two tablespoons of reduced-fat cream cheese and a Ĺ teaspoon of vanilla extract to the above recipe.
Pomegranates. These are some of the most antioxidant-rich fruits around, and research shows that their juice has more inflammation-fighting antioxidants than red wine or even green tea.
Make an age-fighting scrub by cutting off the crown and scoring the rind in sections without cutting all the way through. Place in a bowl of water for five to 10 minutes and break the rind away from the seeds. Then, strain the seeds. In a food processor, combine two tablespoons of seeds and one cup of uncooked oatmeal. Transfer to a bowl, stir in two tablespoons of honey and two tablespoons of buttermilk. Apply to your face for a few minutes and rinse. Donít throw away the leftovers. Enjoy the remaining pomegranate seeds alone or with your cheese.
Eat up (or smooth on!) for healthy skin!