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Your Skin "Farmacy"


June 1st, 2015

As farmer’s market season gets in full gear, take advantage of the fresh fruits and vegetables picked when ripe and full of nutrients. Produce starts losing key vitamins and minerals as soon as they are picked. Many of us are shopping in grocery stores where the produce was picked up to 3 weeks ago!

To find the nearest farmer’s market to you, check out the 2015 CORV guide.

What you put in your mouth is just as important as the products you apply to your skin. While it is key to choose topical products that are good for you (i.e. Intelligent Nutrients), what you eat can require you to use less. Glowing, healthy skin starts from the inside. If you suffer from acne, eczema, or unexplained rashes, it could be a sign that your gut is not functioning properly. If this sounds like you, please speak to one our integrative medicine physicians.

Below are a list of some our favorite foods for healthy skin.

1. Almonds

These small antioxidant powerhouses are actually seeds, not nuts. They contain Vitamin E, a natural sun blocker. It acts an antioxidant to protect skin from UV light along with other environmental factors that generate free radicals that damage cells leading to skin damage and cancer.

Recommended dose: 20 almonds a day, soaked overnight to activate enzymes

2. Carrots

The key nutrient here is Vitamin A. You may take the synthetic form in your favorite retinol cream. Vitamin A is not only good for your eye health, but also for preventing over-production of your epidermis. When you have a buildup of this layer, dead cells and sebum equal clogged pores which can lead to acne. Extra bonus: It helps to reduce the development of skin cancer cells.

Recommended dose: 15 baby carrots a day

3. Green tea

The leaves are full of EGCG, a powerful antioxidant that reduces inflammation and has anti-cancer properties. While it comes in all forms and flavors, we prefer matcha tea. When you ingest the entire leaf (always buy organic), you receive 100% of the nutrients vs. a tea bag. One cup of matcha equals about 10 cups of regular green tea from a nutritional perspective.

Recommended dose: 1 cup of organic matcha tea

4. Liquid chlorophyll

If eating salads and drinking green juices isn’t your thing, try adding liquid chlorophyll to your diet. Available in the supplement section in Whole Foods, you may have walked right by it. It tastes minty and acts as an internal deodorant while also oxygenating the skin from the inside out.

Recommended dose: 1-2 Tbsp. a day

One last tip…

If you only do one thing to avoid premature aging, stop the white stuff. Sugar (in all forms) speeds up the appearance of wrinkles and can cause sagging skin, acne, and puffy eyes. A common culprit are protein bars. They are deceptively full of sugar and often no better than just eating a cookie. Try to buy brands that contain no more than 6 grams of sugar and have plenty of fiber to slow down absorption.

Originally posted at Alliance Integrative Medicine.

Dr. Tiffany Lester