Today’s blog entry is provided by Tammy Lakatos Shames and Elysse (“Lyssie”) Lakatos, known as The Nutrition Twins®. Tammy and Lyssie share more than identical features; they share a passion to teach people how to eat healthfully and exercise so they’ll have tons of ENERGY to live happy lives. Over the past 13 years, they’ve focused their own limitless energy (which they get from the way that they eat, how they exercise, and from their lifestyle) on building a thriving private practice in New York City helping thousands of individual and corporate clients.
Charlize Theron, Halle Berry and Jennifer Aniston exude the picture of perfect health thanks in part to their glowing skin. Skin is one of the first things that you notice when you’re looking at someone, so it’s no wonder why many people will go to extremes like surgery and laser treatments to look years younger and to achieve that beautiful complexion that their favorite celebs appear to have. As registered dietitians, an improved complexion is one of the best and most unexpected side effects that our clients experience after eating a healthy diet and following our exercise recommendations. They’re always delighted that their skin reaps such fabulous benefits from a healthy lifestyle without requiring a hefty price tag.
For radiant, younger-looking skin, follow these tips:
1. Top your cereal and yogurt with berries and add broccoli and peppers to your stir-fries, pizzas and sandwiches to get adequate Vitamin C, a potent antioxidant that plays a big part in collagen synthesis. Collagen makes skin strong, elastic and stretchy. Imagine having skin like a baby that returns to its original position after making expressions. Vitamin C helps the skin to do this. We’re talking citrus fruits, strawberries, oranges and grapefruits, bell peppers and tomatoes. Want smoother skin? Studies show this is the answer.
2. Ditch the greasy snacks like chips, fries and doughnuts and instead reach for nuts and seeds (1-2 tablespoons is all you need as calories add up quickly!) and you’ll get vitamin E, a fat-soluble antioxidant. Vitamin E prevents free radicals from accelerating the aging process. You can also get Vitamin E from avocados, unprocessed whole grains such as whole-wheat flour, barley and rye.
3. Aim to eat vegetables at each of your meals and snacks. We know this is a lofty goal for many people, so when you are unable to include a veggie, have a fruit. Imagine this: as you swallow delicious nutrient-rich food, you are nourishing your skin, erasing wrinkles and reducing inflammation from sun exposure. Imagine no more, simply eat vegetables and fruits—they’re packed with powerful free radical scavengers known as phytonutrients that give produce their bright rainbow of colors and that may help to do this.
4. You are what you eat!: A person’s face that carries a hint of orange are perceived as healthier and more attractive. This color can be achieved from eating moderate amounts of carotenoids. Here’s how to get them:
Snack on baby carrots and bell peppers cut into strips. Add sweet potatoes, spinach and kale in stir-fries or eat them as sides to fish dinners (see tip #5). They have carotenoids, and their deep hues may prevent skin aging and improve skin tone.
Stack sandwiches with tomatoes, slice tomatoes over pasta, and add them to salads. Enjoy watermelon for dessert, as a snack, or as a blended drink. Tomatoes and watermelon contain lycopene, a carotenoid that gives them their color, protects the skin from the sun and is linked to smoother skin.
5. Go fish! Ironically, if you want to prevent having dry scaly skin like a fish, eat them! Fish, especially salmon, herring and sardines, contain omega 3-fatty acids that keep the skin vibrant and well-nourished. Omega 3’s also protect against sun damage and fight inflammation.
6. Drink up! Water, that is. Proper hydration is mandatory if you want a glowing hue. Hydration keeps the skin plump and minimizes fine lines and wrinkles.
7. Get some cardio exercise most days of the week for at least one-half hour. Add strength training to your routine several days a week. Increased muscle tone improves skin appearance, firming the foundation that underlies tissues. Cardiovascular exercise gets the blood pumping and brings oxygen to the skin so it looks vibrant and creates a rosy hue. Studies have shown more skin dryness and wrinkles in people who are less physically active.
Read the latest book from The Nutrition Twins – The Secret To Skinny: How Salt Makes You Fat, and the 4-Week Plan to Drop a Size and Get Healthier with Simple Low-Sodium Swaps. To order, and to learn more about The Nutrition Twins other book, Fire Up Your Metabolism, go to www.nutritiontwins.com/store.