Nutrient-packed superfoods not only help fight disease, and help you feel more energetic, they also make us beautiful. And while beauty is in the eye of the beholder, it’s generally accepted that true beauty comes from within. In other words, healthy people are beautiful people. Here are 10 foods that will keep you beautiful on the inside and the outside as well.
Healthy Smile: Research has shown that raisins, high in antioxidants help fight and inhibit bacteria, specifically Streptococcus Mutans, that is a primary cause of cavities and gum disease. A daily cup of Green tea has also shown promise in lowering risk of gum disease.
Healthy Skin: Beginning in your twenties, collagen—the fibrous protein that keeps skin firm, youthful-looking and wrinkle-free—begins to decline. Edamame and other soy foods are rich in isoflavones that have shown to protect against ultraviolet radiation and prevent collagen breakdown. Other foods that help preserve collagen are tomatoes, leafy greens, and foods containing Omega 3s like Salmon.
3. Kidney Beans
Healthy Hair & Skin: Kidney Beans along with being a rich source of antioxidants are high in protein, iron zinc, and biotin. These properties will help protect hair against breakage and allow it to grow longer and fuller. In addition to a beauty food, kidney beans are an amazing superfood that has shown to have a strong tie with cancer prevention, brain function, bone strength, diabetes, and much more.
Healthy Skin: Ounce for ounce, berries have more protective plant antioxidants that almost any other food. Strawberries are high in vitamin C that which acts as a building block for collagen. Did you know that 1 cup of strawberries contains more than 100% of your daily need for vitamin C?
Here are some strawberry recipes.
5. Romaine Lettuce
Healthy Skin: Vitamin A is another one of those beauty vitamins that revitalizes skin by increasing cell turnover. Six leaves of romaine lettuce will provide more than 100% of your vitamin A DV. Plus, romaine lettuce is also a source of potassium which helps improve circulation.
Healthy Skin: Walnuts is high in alpha-linolenic acid, an omega-3 fat that helps to keep skin moist and supple. A ½-ounce serving of walnuts provides 100% of the recommended daily intake of ALA.
7. Tart Cherry Juice
Healthy Sleep/Anti-Inflammatory: Tart cherry juice contains melatonin, a sleep-inducing hormone that is triggered by darkness. In a Louisiana State University study, researchers found that when adults with chronic insomnia consumed 1 cup of tart cherry juice, twice a day, the severity of their symptoms were reduced. In fact, participates in the study slept an average of 84 minutes longer that those not drinking it.
For athletes, tart cherry juice is showing amazing promise because of its anti-inflammatory properties, particularly in post-run muscle soreness. An Oregon Health & Science University trial studied 54 long-distance runners who drank 2 bottles, twice daily, for one week leading up to a race. Those who consumed the cherry-juice reported a significantly smaller increase in pain both during and after the race than those who did not drink it. It is also showing tremendous promise in relieving joint pain in patients with mild to moderate knee osteoarthritis.
Healthy Skin: Tea is rich in antioxidants that decrease inflammation and protect cell membranes. Some studies have shown that tea may also reduce the damage of sunburns and overexposure to ultraviolet light. Green tea is especially rich in a compound known as EGCG which may acts as a “fountain of youth” of sorts for skin by reactivating dying skin cells.
Healthy Skin: Avocados are a great source of healthy monounsaturated fat that help nourish skin and boost cell elasticity and nutrient absorption. It also contains compounds known as plant sterols, which have an effect on estrogen and progesterone hormones, both of which help regulate ovulation and menstrual cycles. Avocados also maintain vitamins C, E, and three antioxidants called beta-carotene, zeaxanthin and lutein that keep free radicals (unstable molecules that cause stress and cell membrane damage) in check.
10. Brazil Nuts
Inflammation: Brazil nuts are high in selenium, which is great for the immune system. It calms inflammation, fights free radical damage (linked to heart disease and cancer) and helps to regulate our thyroids and therefore metabolism. All you need is 1 brazil nut a day!