Did you know that food can help protect your skin from sun damage?
There are certain foods that contain chemical compounds which not only protect your skin when you’re out in the sun, but they can also repair your skin and reverse sun damage. The good news is that these foods are not only beneficial, but they’re tasty, too.
1. Cherries – Cherries are a good source of melatonin which is an antioxidant and a chemical that helps protect your skin against UV rays. The Montmorency cherry has the highest level of melatonin. Ingredients in cherries have also been shown to repair sunburned skin by stimulating new skin cells to grow. They’re high in vitamin C, too, which is a building block of collagen, nature’s wrinkle preventer.
2. Tomatoes – Lycopene is the helpful ingredient in tomatoes and it is highest in heirloom tomatoes. This antioxidant has been shown to reduce UV-induced free radicals by half.
3. Watermelon – This tasty summertime fruit is also quite high in lycopene.
4. Cremini mushrooms – These lovely little mushrooms are high in selenium and vitamin B. Selenium is required to make the antioxidant glutathione peroxidase, which fights free radicals that are created in your skin when it’s exposed to the sun.
5. Green tea – Green tea, hot or iced, contains high levels of epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG). This is an antioxidant that fights inflammation in the skin and reduces free radicals.
6. Peppers – Sweet or hot, the Capsiate in peppers decreases UVB-induced skin damage and fights inflammation from sun damage.
7. Pomegranate – Pomegranates contain polyphenols that protect your skin from UVA and UVB free radicals. Pomegranates have also been shown to boost the SPF of your sunscreen by up to 25%.
8. Salmon – The omega-3 fats in salmon fight inflammation from UVB rays. They also block the enzymes that are released by UV light and cause collagen depletion.
9. Carrots – The antioxidant beta carotene found in carrots protects and repairs cells with sun damage.
10. Sweet potatoes – These lovely tubers are also high in beta carotene.
Add one or more of these foods to your daily diet during the long days of summer and help keep your skin beautiful and healthy. They’re all easy to find and simply delicious.
Look your best all day… every day!
Emily Marshall, President and Licensed Cosmetologist
Northwest Dermacolor Center