Saturday, February 21, 2009

7 Healthy Foods to Improve Aging Skin

Achieve your beauty goals by focusing on these anti-aging skin tips! Aging skin can be improved with healthy foods, and yummy meals can keep you young and prevent premature aging (an upward spiral). Dr Julia Hunter of Skin Fitness Plus in Beverly Hills, California offers these food and skin tips.
But first, quip from a gorgeous, youthful actress:
“It’s time to stop worrying about losing our looks and started celebrating the gifts of age: I feel yummier than ever,” said Sela Ward.
Sure - it’s easier for her to say! Sela Ward is naturally gorgeous. The rest of us could use a little help here and there as we strive to achieve our beauty goals…and it’s great to know that certain healthy foods improve aging skin! Here are Dr Hunter’s skin tips…and, to learn how to get acne under control, click on the book 101 Questions & Answers About Acne by Dr Doris Day, M.D..

7 Healthy Foods to Improve Aging Skin
1. Certain foods trigger premature aging. “Foods age us,” says Dr Hunter. Foods that detract from your appearance include simple and refined sugars, high glycemic carbs, refined, manufactured foods, hydrogenated fats, and artificial chemical additives. ”Those foods negatively impact the functioning of your thyroid gland - the master gland of the body - which ages you. Plus, those unhealthy foods make you tired and susceptible to diseases. They also impair the functioning of all the other organs in your body.” Unhealthy foods aren’t just bad for your waistline, they’re bad for your organs, glands, and hormones - and they don’t help you achieve your beauty goals.
2. Some foods cause allergic reactions. Dr Hunter says that some foods can trigger allergic reactions, which sometimes cause swollen and irritated cells in the lining of the gut. Other times, foods can cause full blown rashes, contribute to acne, make us feel bad, and disrupt our sleep. To improve aging skin and achieve your beauty goals, chart how you feel and look after eating certain foods, such as dairy or flour products - especially if you think you have a food allergy.
3. Inflammation makes you look old. “Food causes inflammation, which causes disease and aging,” says Dr Hunter. “Other things also contribute to inflammation, such as pollution, sunlight, radiation, stress, medications, and chemicals. Inflammation and glycation are the chemical processes that change our appearance.” She lists several effects of inflammation and age: dark circles under and around our eyes, brown “age” spots, rosacea (abnormal blood vessels), thin skin, hair loss, bags under your eyes, crinkles, wrinkles, jowls, loose eyelids, and everything falling toward the ground! But don’t lose heart: there are healthy foods that improve aging skin and help you achieve your beauty goals.
4. Lack of collagen triggers premature aging. “Aging is collagen failure. People who restrict their calories decrease their inflammation, so they age less quickly. People who take many and varied antioxidants, vitamins and minerals and who keep their hormone producing organs functioning at a robust, healthy level age much less quickly,” says Dr Hunter. “In fact, they seem to stop aging.” Foods that keep you young include supplements (vitamins and minerals, for example) to make sure that your body is functioning optimally.
5. Healthy oils fight wrinkles. Olive oil, hemp, flaxseed, borage, black currants, raw coconut and omega-3’s from fish all help “juice” up the skin and make you look young. Avocado, nuts, and wild salmon are healthy foods that improve aging skin and help you achieve your beauty goals.
6. Water improves your appearance. “We all dry up as we get older, which contributes to fine lines and helps gravity.” Dr Hunter is working with a major water company to encourage people to drink more therapeutic bottled water. “We must drink water, and it’s best to drink one or two liters per day,” she says. Dr Hunter recommends adding a green tea bag or green powders to water, or drinking organic whole leaf aloe juice (one to two ounces per day). These green wonders decrease aging, laxity, and brown spots. Green tea and aloe juice also increase clarity and skin tightness all over your body. The nutrients in green tea, green powders, and aloe juice also decrease aging of the internal organs, including the brain - and they also decrease the risk of Alzheimer’s. So, your appearance, health, and body vitality are all closely intertwined!
7. The greener, the better. Dr Hunter’s mantra is “Green, green and more green!” She recommends eating foods as close to nature as possible - healthy foods that improve aging skin. Eat red meat not more than once a week, and enjoy lean proteins such as turkey, wild fish (not farm raised because they don’t have the same nutrients), black beans, red beans, wild or brown rice (not white), and nuts. The foods that keep you young are the same as those that keep you healthy: whole foods, with as little processing as possible - which will help you achieve your beauty goals.

“Your appearance is affected by the internal effects of the foods you eat,” says Dr Hunter. Your diet affects much more than your weight; it affects your skin, hair, and overall appearance!

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