3 Must-Have Superfoods for Your Glowing Skin Smoothie
WRITTEN BY OUR OFFICIAL SCIENCE STEEPER: ALLISON TANNIS, MSC RHN.
Hello, there - beautiful, healthy-looking skin! Certain superfoods help nourish the skin, improving its health and appearance. Skin experts agree, that with the right nutrients, smoothies can support healthy skin maintenance and repair. Are you ready to glow?
Can Food Help Your Skin Glow?
Feed your skin and it’ll look, and feel healthier. Skin needs to be fed with nutrients, such as vitamin C, from within. Eating the right foods reduces inflammation (puffy, red appearance of skin), helping its natural glow shine through. Meanwhile, the wrong foods can promote inflammation in your skin.
4 Foods to Avoid for Glowing Skin
· Ultra-processed foods
· Fried foods
· Sugary beverages
· Whey proteins*
*Dairy contains whey proteins that can negatively impact insulin levels, an unhelpful event for those struggling with acne, according to experts.
Can a Smoothie Help Your Skin Glow?
Experts suggest they might. In a study, drinking a smoothie a day that was rich in carotenoids (nutrients found in red, orange, and yellow fruits and vegetables) appeared to enhance skin health. Carotenoids act as antioxidants, helping protect the skin from the damaging effects of UV light. The body can’t make carotenoids, you need to consume them. Since carotenoids can accumulate in the skin, regular consumption of these nutrients could help protect your skin from sunlight, helping it retain its glow. Chopping plants that contain carotenoids increases their bioavailability – get your blenders started!
Best Smoothies for Glowing Skin
What should you put in your smoothie to help your skin look its best? A number of fresh fruits, vegetables, and green leaves are a great start, say experts, as these foods contain nutrients that support healthy skin. But, these other ingredients may surprise you…
7 Most Important Nutrients for Glowing Skin
· Carotenoids (mango, spinach, sweet potatoes)
· Vitamin C (leafy greens, raspberries, limes)
· Vitamin E (nuts, seeds, wheat germ)
· EGCG (green tea leaves)
· Omega-3 fatty acids (fatty fish, seaweed)
· Water (fresh fruit, vegetables, water)
· Flavanonols (dark chocolate)
3 Must-Have Superfoods for Your Glowing Skin Smoothie
1. Superfood Tea Leaves
Vitamin C and E found in plant-based foods are known to support the skin by protecting it from damage and inflammation, and promoting structural support. But, the most exciting skin-supporting smoothie ingredients are green leaves! Green leaves are packed with nutrients for glowing skin, such as carotenoids, vitamin C, vitamin E, B vitamins, and iron. Plus, if you add into your smoothie the superfood, frozen tea leaves, your skin could also benefit from the impressive nutrient, EGCG.
EGCG has more than antioxidant activity – it has positive effects on skin hydration and moisture retention, according to research studies looking at its topical application. We’re not suggesting slathering your face with your smoothie, (even if it’s trendy on social media). Drink up! Scientists have found getting EGCG in your body increases collagen and elastin fiber creation, and slows collagen breakdown. Collagen and elastin are the scaffolding and elastics that give your skin its bounce-back resilience and smoothness. Both collagen and elastin in the skin decline with age. There are many benefits of green tea for aging skin. Ready to toss in superfood tea cubes into your smoothie – it could reduce wrinkles. Lastly, green tea appears to slow photo-aging – the damaging effects on your skin from the sun.
4 Reasons Superfood Tea Cubes Support Healthy Skin
· Protects photo-aging
· Increases collagen
· Improves elastin fibers
· Reduces collagen breakdown
2. Sweet Potato
Surprisingly epic in a smoothie, baked or roasted sweet potato is a fun ingredient that supports skin health. Rich in beta-carotene, it’s a great choice. Papaya, carrots, or spinach are other great choices. One cup of spinach ranked among the top 3 food sources of beta-carotene, by Oregon State University researchers. It’s worth noting, that these skin-healthy carotenoids absorb better when fat is present - consider including some fat (avocado, yogurt, nut butter) in your next smoothie creation.
3. Nut Butter
The best fats for reducing inflammation are omega-3 fatty acids, notes studies. But, since a salmon smoothie isn’t too appealing, these other fats might be more ideal. Oleic acid is a type of monounsaturated fat found in nut butters, including peanut butter. Research shows oleic acid may improve insulin metabolism, which can impact skin health. Nut butters are delicious in smoothies.
Here are 3 amazingly delicious AND nutritious smoothies for a glowing skin:
Plant-based foods for skin health: a narrative review. J Acad Nutr Diet 2022 Mar;122(3):614-629.
Daily consumption of a fruit and vegetable smoothie alters facial skin color. PLoSOne 2015 Jul;10(7).
The edible skincare diet. Nature 2018 Nov;563(7732):S94-95.
A review of the role of green tea (Camellia sinensis) in antiphotoaging, stress resistance, neuroprotection, and autophagy. Nutrients 2019 Feb 23;11(2):474.
Skin protective effect of epigallocatechin gallate. Int J Mol Sci 2018 Jan 6;19(1):173.
Long-term ingestion of high flavanol cocoa provides photoprotection against UV-induced erythema and improves skin condition in women. J Nutr 2006 Jun; 136(6): 1565-9.
Efficacy of dietary hempseed oil in patients with atopic dermatitis. J Dermatolog Treat 2005 Apr;16(2):87-94.
The potential uses of omega-3 fatty acids in dermatology: a review. J Cutan Med Surg Sep/Oct 2020;24(5):481-494.
Effects of diet on acne and its response to treatment. Am J Clin Dermatol 2021; 22(1): 55-65.
Oliec acid protects against insulin resistance by regulating the genes related to the P13K signaling pathway. J Clin Med 2020 Aug; 9(8):2615.