Learn how to eat for a vibrant and gorgeous glow with these seven foods that promote the body’s natural production of collagen. Located within the dermis (beneath the outermost layer of the skin), collagen is a protein crucial to the structural integrity of your body’s largest organ. The Standard American Diet is full of refined and processed sugars which accelerate aging, and also promote illness, inflammation, and weight gain. With conscious detox and Daily Shakes, and these healing and beautifying foods, your skin can improve and maintain a healthy radiance.
FOODS THAT PROVIDE THE BOOST
Berries: Rich in antioxidants that ward off free radicals, and phytonutrients that support collagen production, berries offer delicious and powerful support for your skin. During the 21-Day Clean Program, we do recommend you avoid strawberries (one of the most common food allergens), but a handful or two of blackberries, raspberries, or blueberries in your morning smoothie or healthy snack with have you reaping the beautifying benefits.
Citrus fruits: High in vitamin C, studies show that citrus fruits such as oranges, lemons, limes, and grapefruits help the amino acids lysine and proline convert to collagen in the skin. Citrus fruits are brilliant for brightening up your green smoothies and are wonderful for healthier baking (like our healthy lemon bars). During your cleanse we skip oranges and grapefruits, but focus on lemons and limes, which are super alkalizing and are a great addition to salads, shakes, and in a glass of water in the morning.
Garlic: Sulphur is crucial to our natural production of collagen, and garlic is one of the best ways to get some in our diet. Garlic also provides taurine and lipoic acid which assist in repairing damaged collagen fibers, so try a new recipe or two, even throw some minced garlic into salads, and enjoy.
Avocados: Creamy, buttery, and satisfying avocados are rich in omega-3 and vitamin E which fight free radicals. An excellent addition to smoothies or as a snack of guacamole and veggies, avocados are a wonderful way to support skin health while provided sustained energy throughout the day. And if you haven’t tried a good chocolate avocado mousse yet you are in for a treat.
Dark leafy greens: We could sing the praises of dark leafy greens all day. Leafy greens provide vitamins A and C for powerful collagen and immune support, and are also a major source of fiber, iron, calcium, magnesium, and vitamin K. A great way to make sure you get your greens in each day is to find a few green smoothie recipes you love for your daily shakes. Don’t forget to rotate your greens throughout the week to ensure you’re getting a variety of vitamins and minerals, and to avoid any build up of oxalic acid. It’s unlikely that oxalic acid will cause kidney stones or have any thyroid effect for most people, but it’s helpful to rotate foods to maximize nutrient exposure and avoid sensitivities.
Flax seeds: Flax is a powerful plant-based source of omega-3, which keeps your skin youthful and elastic. Flax seeds also provide a great source of fiber, protein, thiamin (vitamin B1), manganese, and magnesium. Flax “eggs” are also an essential component to successful vegan baking, and is a great binder when eliminating eggs from recipes, like egg-free cauliflower pizza crust.
Carrots: Orange foods like carrots and sweet potatoes contain vitamin A (retinol) to help keep your skin youthful and glowing. Vitamin A is a powerful way to support cellular renewal and skin health. Carrots also contain vitamin K, potassium, and folate, and can reduce cardiovascular risks. Carotenoids have also been shown to regulate blood sugar levels.
BEAUTIFUL SKIN STARTS WITH POWERFUL NUTRITION
A diet of refined sugar, starches, processed and synthetic foods increases inflammation and can accelerate aging in the body. If you want a naturally gorgeous and youthful glow, eat whole, nourishing foods, support your body’s natural detoxification processes, and enjoy the inner and outer benefits of a clean-supported lifestyle.
Written by Carolyn De Lorenzo
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