Maybe it’s all those years spent under the relentless Colorado sun or the exhaustive haze of raising a toddler…but my skin shows. And while aging is a privilege—and every line and sunspot tells a story of the past—I still want to prioritize the health of my skin. Because let’s face it: We all want to age gracefully. Luckily, it’s never too late to take care of your skin (and get it checked!). In many ways, healthy, radiant skin is a product of what’s happening beneath the surface and lifestyle is important. From prioritizing sleep and exercise to eating anti-aging foods that deeply nourish our skin, consistent habits are key. Speaking of food, glowing skin begins with both what we eat and how we eat. The best of all worlds, anti-aging foods help with so much more than a dull complexion.
Why Is Skin So Important?
We all know our skin is important. There’s no arguing that. It’s made up of water, proteins, lipids, and a variety of chemicals and minerals. Not only does it hold everything in, but skin plays a crucial role in providing an airtight, watertight, and flexible barrier—between the outside world and all of the systems within the body. As our largest organ, it’s a defense against toxins. It also regulates our body temperature and aids in vitamin production.
The Power of Optimal Skin Care
Here at Camille Styles, skincare is fundamental to who we are. We love the meditative and therapeutic process of cleansing, toning, and moisturizing, but we’re also keen on results. We know order matters. And we believe budget-friendly products deserve plenty of shelf space. Ultimately, optimal skincare is crucial for maintaining skin’s healthy barrier—much of which can help delay the signs of aging. The dermis houses collagen and elastin, the proteins that offer support and elasticity. As we age, our skin is associated with progressive atrophy of the dermis. Therefore, preventative measures (like eating the best anti-aging foods!) are key.
When You Should Begin Eating Anti-Aging Foods
For some, the first physical signs of aging can appear around age 25. Are you noticing issues such as dull skin, fine lines, wrinkles, fragile hair, brittle nails, and joint problems? While most think of aging in the form of fine lines and wrinkles, natural aging also affects a lot more: Our energy levels, heart health, blood pressure, bone density, bowel function, body weight, and more. Ideally, you should start focusing on the best anti-aging foods by your mid-20s. But if you missed that boat, don’t worry. It’s never too late to make impactful changes.
Is Your Diet Aging You?
It comes as no surprise that what you put on your plate could affect what reflects in the mirror. Luckily, a few tweaks to your eating habits can go a long way in keeping your skin youthful (and your body healthy). Unfortunately, poor quality foods, like refined sugar and trans fats cause inflammation. And aging is, in many ways, a chronic inflammatory state. In essence, eating too many inflammatory foods (industrial seed oils, soda, etc.) can lead to damage to your skin’s collagen. To avoid that, you want to focus on antioxidant-rich foods, hydrating with purified water, and limiting conventionally-grown meat. Anti-aging supplements can help, too.
10 Best Anti-Aging Foods
Full of color, texture, and many micronutrients, the best anti-aging foods deserve a spot in your grocery basket.
Many nuts, especially almonds, are a great source of vitamin E. Vitamin E can help repair skin tissue, retain skin moisture, and protect skin from damaging UV rays. Walnuts, too, can help strengthen skin cell membranes, protect against sun damage, and give skin a beautiful glow by preserving its natural oil barrier.
When it comes to skin health, omega-3 fatty acids are key. Omega-3 fatty acids fight inflammation. Aim for a combination of EPA and DHA from salmon, walnuts, hemp hearts, chia seeds, ground flaxseed, and avocados. The high content of vitamin A in avocados can help shed dead skin cells, encouraging glowing skin. Their carotenoid content may also assist in blocking toxins and damage from the sun’s rays and also help to protect against skin cancers.
Red bell peppers, in particular, are loaded with antioxidants. And antioxidants reign supreme when it comes to anti-aging. In addition to their high vitamin C content (which is necessary for collagen production!), they contain powerful antioxidants. A bell pepper’s anti-inflammatory prosperities may help protect skin from sun damage, pollution, and other toxins.
Rich in vitamins A and C, as well as an age-defying antioxidant, called anthocyanin, blueberries help protect skin from sun damage, pollution, etc. Along with other antioxidant-rich produce, eating blueberries can increase your total antioxidant intake to help reduce premature aging. They also help prevent collagen loss.
In addition to other leafy greens and cruciferous veggies, broccoli is an anti-inflammatory, anti-aging powerhouse. It’s packed with vitamins C and K, antioxidants, fiber, folate, and more. Your body needs vitamin C for the production of collagen, the main protein in the skin that gives it strength and elasticity.
Probiotic foods, in general, are key for skin health. After all, an unbalanced gut can show on the outside, causing premature aging. So, how can you repair an unbalanced gut microbiome? Through fermented foods that encourage probiotic growth and help reduce toxic load. In addition to consuming kefir (I like to throw it into a smoothie), it’s effective when used externally, too. Kefir helps get rid of dead skin cells, restores the balance of beneficial bacterias on your skin, and stimulates the production of collagen, an anti-aging agent.
The wide range of antioxidants in papaya helps to fight free radical damage and may delay signs of aging. Papaya also contains an enzyme called papain, which provides additional anti-aging benefits. It works as one of nature’s best anti-inflammatory agents. It comes as no surprise that papaya is also found in many exfoliating products.
Like blueberries, strawberries, and kiwi fruit, pomegranates have been used for centuries as a healing medicinal fruit. High in vitamin C and a variety of potent antioxidants, pomegranates may protect our body from free radical damage and reduce levels of inflammation in our system. They also contain a compound called Punicalagins, which may help to preserve collagen in the skin, slowing signs of aging.
This comforting root vegetable is a great source of vitamins C and E—both of which may protect our skin from harmful free radicals and keep our complexion radiant. Sweet potatoes also stimulate the production of collagen and help minimize wrinkles.
This nutrient-dense and hydrating green is a powerhouse vegetable. It packs several important nutrients but is extremely low in calories. It contains a plethora of antioxidants and minerals to support your skin (and help with reversing sun damage!).
Easy Anti-Aging Recipes
To get started incorporating skin-enhancing ingredients, here are 10 delicious anti-aging recipes.
Homemade Honey Almond Granola by Inspired Taste
If you’re intimidated by making homemade granola, this recipe is for you. The base is made from rolled oats and sliced almonds, but you could certainly add more. Raisins, currants, other types of nuts, dried figs, cherries, etc. Think of homemade granola as cleaning out your pantry. This granola is crunchy perfectly sweet.
Winter Citrus Avocado Salad by Darn Good Veggies
This winter citrus avocado salad is packed with juicy citrus, avocado, herbs, and a sweet and acidic vinaigrette. A healthy recipe that’s ready in 30 minutes, yes please.
Stuffed Bell Peppers With Ground Beef by Foodie Crush
You can’t go wrong with classic stuffed peppers with rice and ground beer. A vibrant rainbow of sweet red, yellow, and orange bell peppers makes the best easy dinner idea any night of the week.
Blueberry Baked Oatmeal by Joy Food Sunshine
This easy and healthy blueberry-baked oatmeal recipe is a delicious make-ahead breakfast to feed a crowd. It’s high-protein, gluten-free, and free of refined sugar. Plus, it’s very customizable and loaded with antioxidant-rich blueberries!
This slow-roasted cod with broccolini, squash, and mint is one of our favorite #CSCleanse recipes to date. It feels downright elegant, yet comes together in minutes, bakes right in one pan, and is brimming with healthy, in-season ingredients that’ll make you feel so good after polishing it off.
Mango Turmeric Overnight Oats With Kefir by Flavour & Savour
Love golden milk? Here it is in jars of creamy overnight oats! Made with probiotic kefir and anti-inflammatory turmeric, they’ll be ready to grab from your fridge on a busy morning.
Papaya Bars by A Cozy Kitchen
These papaya bars are so delicious. A silky smooth custard using fresh papaya fruit sits on a bed of shortbread crust. They’re perfect as a warm-weather winter dessert.
Apple Pomegranate Harvest Salad by A Simple Palate
Your whole family will love this amazing harvest salad. Made with crisp apple slices, crunchy and sweet pomegranate seeds, and lots of greens, it’s filling and packed with antioxidants. Paired with a simple balsamic dressing, it’s the perfect winter salad.
Here at Camille Styles, our love for sweet potatoes knows no bounds: we’ve stuffed them with kale and chickpeas, smashed and thrown them on the grill, and drizzled topped them with feta and drizzles of hot honey. This simple yet game-changing technique creates the most crispy roasted sweet potatoes you’ve ever tasted.
Watercress With Orange and Chia Seeds by Irena Macri
This zesty watercress salad is super nutritious and easy to make. With the addition of antioxidant-rich oranges and dried cranberries and healthy fats from avocado and chia seeds, this is a great salad to serve as a light meal or as a side dish to any main dish. It’s paleo, gluten-free, Whole30, and vegan-friendly.
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