Can the right groceries give you glowing winter skin?
Winter is truly on it’s way and most of us will be bundled under winter layers from now until spring. It’s cold and windy, many of us have cranked up the central heating already and our skin needs love now more than ever to stay well-hydrated and healthy.
Of course, skincare and makeup products play a part but there’s more we can do to inspire our glow from within during winter and it starts at your local grocery store.
Our ultimate seasonal shopping for optimum hydration for wintertime skin – healing foods + a few extra tips.
Deliciously refreshing and beautiful in colour, these sweet seeds are packed with polyphenol antioxidants to protect skin, fight inflammation, and boost blood flow. These powerful seeds also contain ellagic acid, which is a super-antioxidant that’s been shown to prevent wrinkles. Eat regularly snack for glowing, firmer skin. Try adding a handful of seeds to your breakfast oats. Or try sprinkled liberally over middle eastern inspired dishes such as our Lebanese falafel and quinoa salad or our cumin roast cauliflower and harissa aubergine.
Sweet potatoes (and other “orange” foods like carrots and winter squashes)
These sweet foods are rich in antioxidants, such as, beta-carotene, which helps to prevent winter dry skin by strengthening the skin’s protective barrier – adding moisture and plumping skin cells. Potatoes and carrots are also full of vitamin C, which help brighten and smooth away wrinkles by stimulating the production of collagen.
Why not add the ingredients for our founder, Jenny’s recipe for fragrant sweet potato and lime soup to your shopping basket? Not only will it leave you feeling super-cozy and satisfied, it’s packed with foods rich in beta carotene, a winter winner!
Grapefruit and other citrus fruits are loaded with vitamin C, vitamin C really is the ultimate vitamin for that fountain-of-youth glow we crave. Grapefruit in particular, not only boosts our metabolism, it’s also high in enzymes, which burn fat and it’s high in water content, which keeps you and your skin happily hydrated. Small early golden and pink grapefruit are the first to show up in season from this month.
These seeds are a super source of vitamin E – keeping skin supple and hydrated. Vitamin E strengthens skin membranes for optimal hydration, plus protects against free radical and UV damage. A handful also contains a supply of omega-6 fatty acids, which stimulates skin growth and contains selenium, which keeps skin super healthy and fights off skin infections.
Foods such as avocado, almonds, coconut oil, our healthy fat intake to keep skin supple and looking its best. You can use the Mediterranean diet to guide your choices of health fats and oils. Foods like avocados, olive oil, salmon and tuna are known to contain unsaturated fats and/or omega-3 fatty acids, which may help fight inflammation.
Vitamin D and Zinc
Vitamin D contributes to skin cell growth and repair. Healthy skin normally means hydrated skin and Vitamin D helps destroy free radicals that can cause premature ageing. It might be worth considering taking a higher dose of vitamin D during the winter months to make sure skin is kept in tip-top shape and healthy for optimum hydration.
We also like to take a zinc supplement over the winter months. Not only does zinc strengthen your immune system, it assists in calming blemish-prone skin and soothes dry, irritated, and itchy skin during wintertime by controlling inflammatory reactions – keeping skin soothed and unflakey.
Other top tips to consider
As always, keep in mind to avoid caffeinated beverages, which naturally dehydrate your skin and remember, increase your water intake and sleep, sleep, sleep. Our bodies need plenty of rest and rejuvenate best while we dream, so we can glow-hard during the colder months, too.
Want to ensure you are getting all the foods you need for glowing skin and more? At Balance Box we make it easy with perfectly balanced meals delivered to your door. All of our meals include a wide variety of seasonal produce and are perfectly balanced for optimal nutrition every day. With a delicious range of menus and options to choose from, Balance Box takes the stress out of food planning. Order yours today.
Fragrant sweet potato and lime soup
Preparation time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 25 minutes
2 teaspoons groundnut oil
1 small onion, peeled and finely chopped
1 garlic clove, peeled and finely chopped
2cm piece fresh ginger, peeled and finely chopped
1 large or 2 sweet potatoes (about 200g), peeled and finely chopped
500ml chicken or vegetable stock
100g firm tofu chopped into small dice
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh coriander
Juice of ½ lime
Fresh ground black pepper
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh coriander
Heat the oil in a large non-stick saucepan over a medium heat. Add the onion and leave to sweat for about 3 minutes.
Add the garlic and ginger. Stir to mix the ingredients and leave for a further 1-2 minutes.
Add the sweet potatoes, stir to combine and add the stock. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and leave to simmer for about 15 minutes until the potatoes have softened.
Add the tofu and coriander, then blend the soup until smooth, using a hand-held blender or food processor.
Stir in the lime juice, season to taste with black pepper and warm through before serving.
Ladle the soup into warmed bowls and sprinkle with coriander.
This recipe is from Jennifer’s book, The Balance Diet. available on Amazon (The Orion Publishing Group). Dan Jones Photography.