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What to eat for healthy summer skin

Picture: Supplied
Picture: Supplied

Ever heard the saying, “you are what you eat”?

A well-balanced diet, taking vitamins, drinking enough water and using SPF daily are some of the many things that can help protect your skin and keep it looking and feeling healthy.

Below, Esthetician, Worldwide Nutrition Education and Training expert and Herbalife Nutrition director, Laura Chacon-Garbato, reveals what you should include in your diet for glowing, summer skin.

Eat more Protein

Proteins are essential for tissue repair and the construction of new tissue. Cells need protein for maintenance and the body uses protein to replace worn-out or dead skin cells. Protein can be added to your diet from sources like chicken, meat, fish, soy, or tofu. Meal replacement shakes are also a great way to elevate protein consumption.

Include Antioxidants and Phytonutrients

While protein is essential to achieving healthy skin, antioxidants and phytonutrients are also crucial to skin and overall health. Some plant substances accumulate in the skin and enhance the antioxidant defense mechanism of the skin cells. Make sure your diet includes fruits like blueberries, strawberries and apples, and vegetables like broccoli, spinach, tomatoes, and kale.

Collagen consumption

The human body's collagen accounts for 25% to 30% of its total protein, of which about 75% is skin collagen. Collagen is located primarily in the connective tissue and is responsible for giving the dermis its firm structure. During the ageing process, the skin suffers from a progressive loss of moisture and becomes increasingly dry. When this happens, the dermis becomes thinner, the connective tissue loses its firmness and elasticity, and wrinkles and sagging start to occur. To help your skin age gracefully, look for products with hydrolysed collagen that work from the inside out to support the structure of the skin.

Drink enough water

Strenuous activities during the summer months can lead to substantial water and electrolyte loss. It is essential to keep the body hydrated. Don't leave home without a cooler full of hydrating drinks and foods. Plain water is good and adding a flavour or fresh fruit to cold water will infuse the flavour, and it might encourage you to drink more often. Don't forget that eating fruit is also an excellent way to stay hydrated. Remember to check the carbohydrate content of any additives and fruit you use. It is crucial to stay away from sugary drinks, like sodas, that can increase thirst.

Use SPF daily

Basking in the sun is one of the most enjoyable times in the summer but the last thing you want is to end up with a nasty sunburn at the end of the day. Try using broad-spectrum sunscreens with an SPF value of 15 or higher to protect your skin during ordinary exposure. If you stay out in the sun all day, you should consider stronger protection. Apply sunscreen 30 minutes before going outside, to allow enough time to provide the maximum benefit to your skin. You can also choose light athletic clothing with built-in UVA/UVB protection for added protection. Some lightweight material absorbs sweat and will allow your skin to breathe while enjoying the outdoors.

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