Eating nutrient dense foods every day, provides your body with what it needs to enjoy youthful, glowing skin, and thick, strong hair. Instead of choosing the next fad cream or cosmetic procedure in order to rectify cosmetic flaws, investing in superfoods daily as part of your routine is a preventative approach that actually works.
Superfruits, green foods and fibre keep your system clean on the inside and balance alkalinity. Minerals from these foods create healthy bones, skin, hair, nails, and high quality fats and oils restore elasticity to your skin and give a youthful glow, so you look better, feel better, and function better.
Superfoods have a long history of use. If we can maximise the body’s intake of specific plants, then we give our body an advantage when it comes to cellular repair and free radical elimination. Over time, by incorporating these foods daily, we notice a difference to how we look on the outside.
Superfoods offer complex nutrition. They nourish you because they are the most powerful and concentrated, nutrient-dense foods. The more of these superfoods you can incorporate into your diet, the less you need to default to the quick and easy inflammatory foods we have become to used to eating.
Add these superfoods to your smoothie daily, and watch your skin and overall health improve. According to David Wolfe, the top twelve superfoods for beauty are:
Tribes in the Amazon have been consuming acai for thousands of years. It boosts the immune system, increases energy, fights infections, supports a healthy heart, and is a beauty tonic. These berries are one of the most nutritious source of fiber, protein, iron, and vitamin A. They have very high numbers of anthocyanins (a powerful antioxidant) and are rich in plant sterols.
Acai helps revive tired, damaged skin, restores moisture, relieves the inflammatory effects of acne, protects the skin from premature aging, and restores an overall vibrant complexion.
Aloe is nature’s best emollient so it has the ability to sooth the skin, helps to maintain elasticity, enhances collagen and hydration. It’s loaded with enzymes, and is an inflammation fighter. Consuming aloe vera gel heals the intestinal lining, boosts the immune system, enhances gut flora, and improves the body’s ability to absorb nutrients.
Aloe vera should not be used everyday if taken internally, so once or twice per week is sufficient, unless you have a pre-existing medical condition and have been prescribed aloe vera.
You can even apply the gel of aloe vera to your face for a hydrating face mask, or alternatively add the gel to your smoothie.
Avocados have high levels of phytosterols, carotenoids, flavonoids, and phytonutrients that fight free radicals. They are also an excellent source of B vitamins, vitamin C, E, K and potassium and provide an excellent source of the good kind of fats in order to maintain the brain, muscles, joints, and nerves. Avocados also protect the skin from sun damage.
The raw cacao bean is one of nature’s best beauty foods due to its abundant mineral and trace mineral content. Full of protein, vitamins A, C, Bs, calcium, potassium, iron, and magnesium. The oil of the cacao bean helps to rejuvenate your skin’s condition and appearance. Cacao contains anandamide, the “bliss molecule” which makes you feel happier by hitting your cannabinoid receptors.
Raw, saturated fat is an important building block of each cell in the human body. The skin and the membranes around each cell in the body contains saturated fat, so when you consume a bioavailable source of saturated fat, you are nourishing your cells. Coconut oil contributes to shiny hair, glowing skin, and unlike olive oil, is a good oil to heat as it maintains its integrity at high temperatures.
The goji berry is one of the most nutrient dense berries on earth, a complete protein source (contains nineteen amino acids and all nine essential amino acids) and is full of antioxidant qualities. Antioxidants like those found in goji berries protect against the damaging effects of free radicals, and keeps the liver clean and functioning well in order to create clear, glowing skin.
Hemp is one of the best sources of plant protein available to us. It’s full of essential fatty acids in the perfect ratio, an excellent source of omega 3, 6, and 9, which is clean energy for the body and supports healthy skin. Hemp contains 3 times more vitamin E than flaxseeds, and is full of lecithin, which the hair and skin both love.
Honey nourishes cells and is a particularly good brain food. Honey supports the production of melatonin, needed for good sleep, which is a critical component of healthy aging. Honey is also full of amino acids to support tissue rebuilding and repair, and in its raw and unprocessed form, is full of live enzymes. Always buy a raw honey which has not been processed at high temperatures. This way, it contains its live enzyme healing abilities. Heated honey, loses most of its benefits and is just sugar.
Maca is actually a member of the cruciferous family. It has been used for more than 2600 years, thriving in the Peruvian Andes, and continues to be the highest altitude crop on earth. Maca balances the hormonal system, and by increasing hormone production naturally with maca, you can help to keep your body looking younger. Maca is also an adaptogen to stressful situations. Maca can be used to help in the treatment of anxiety, and because its your ally in stress, its therefore your ally in beauty.
Olive oil is best unheated. It is rejuventating and beautifying and is classed as a ‘good’ fat. Full of Oleic acid, it helps to keep your cell membranes resistant to oxidation, which slows down the aging process. Olive oil is a large part of the Mediterranean diet, which is one of the most anti-aging and anti-inflammatory diets on offer. Olives contain an abundance of vitamin E, which is important for skin structure and repair.
Pumpkin seeds are an anti-aging superpower, full of B vitamins, vitamin E, zinc, magnesium, essential fatty acids, and phytonutrients. Raw pumpkin seeds are a great source of tryptophan to elevate mood and increase serotonin levels, helping to alleviate stress and insomnia.
Pumpkin seeds are also very good for detoxification due to the high methionine content, which draws heavy metals (and parasites!) out of the body. Pumpkin seed oil is anti-inflammatory and full of antioxidants, and research has shown it to be effective in treating hair loss and baldness.
Spirulina provides fundamental nutrition for all sources of life. Spirulina is such a rich source of nutrition. As a beauty food it boosts your skin’s collagen and elastin levels, reduces inflammation and supports healthy hormone production. It can help to prevent wrinkles, sagging skin, and damage from free radicals and environmental exposure. Phycocyanin contributes to its beautiful colour, and contributes to fast skin regeneration. When skin cells turn over faster, we maintain a health glow, because old skin cells make us look dry and dull.
Adapted from David Wolfe, The Beauty Diet.
Yvette is a qualified Melbourne-based Naturopath and Nutritionist, MINDD Practitioner, member of the Naturopaths and Herbalists Association of Australia, and Complementary Medicine Association. Yvette specialises in the treatment of conditions commonly affecting women and children, with a key interest in children’s digestive and neurological conditions, as well as women’s hormonal concerns, digestive issues, fatigue, anxiety, and skin concerns. Yvette consults in South Yarra, Melbourne, as well as Australia-wide via skype/zoom/phone. Book here.