With the summer now here, it will be very tempting for us to attend barbeques, picnics, festivals and many other events over the course of the next few months. And what do all of these summertime traditions have in common? Food! Naturally, we’ll all want to dig in to the many tasty treats that are offered during summer events, but most of them will be high in salt and high in sugar. In other words, summer food is usually bad food.
The truth is, however, not all food that is served at summer events are bad. In fact, you can do a lot to help yourself to remain healthy by simply making the right choices. Many foods that are popularly associated with the summertime are actually quite healthy for your skin. So while you’re lathering on the sunscreen, don’t forget that what you eat will also help determine how much your skin is protected.
Here are five summer foods that promote healthy skin:
1. Watermelon. Most barbeques and picnics usually come with their fair share of fruits and veggies. Be sure not to skimp on your intake of these healthful foods. Watermelon is especially good for you during the summer because of its antioxidant properties and ability to keep you hydrated. “This symbol of summer is around 90 percent water, which hydrates the body,” informs Lauren Mikler on HuffingtonPost.com.
2. Berries. Blackberries, blueberries, raspberries and strawberries are all delicious fruits that are often found as parts of fruit platters at summer events. They are widely known for being antioxidant-rich which makes them fantastic protectors of the skin from the damaging effects of the sun. “Sweet, juicy berries are filled with flavonoids, powerful disease fighters found in many fruits and vegetables,” writes Lexi Petronis and Maria Carter on WomansDay.com.
3. Salmon. Barbeques are known for their charring of meat. You’ll want to avoid anything that has been blackened due to barbequing as the charred parts contain harmful carcinogens. “The blackened areas on charred and grilled flesh foods (meat, poultry, fish) are a source of carcinogenic chemicals,” informs Dr. Nalini Chilkov on HuffingtonPost.com, “These chemical directly damage DNA, our genetic material, and initiate mutations that can lead to the development of cancer.”
Instead of grilled meats, opt for fish such as salmon that is placed on the barbeque with aluminum foil or a cedar plank as the barrier between it and the grill. Not only will this protect the fish from being charred, but the fish itself will be a healthy skin option for you. “The omega-3 fatty acids in the fish are a key component of how skin cells regulate oil production,” reveals Mikler.
4. Salads. Thankfully, while meat is a mainstay at summer barbeques, so are salads. Don’t leave those healthy greens off of your plate. In fact, Petronis and Carter believe that you should “leave steamed veggies behind and fill up on fresh, raw spinach and kale come summer to save your skin….Spruce up your salad with other high-carotenoid sources, like carrots, apricots, cantaloupe, watermelon, tomatoes, pink grapefruit, salmon (etc.) to make an even healthier meal.”
5. Coconut Water. There’s no doubt that you’ll have access to alcohol during your summer parties. It should probably go without saying that alcohol works to dehydrate your body and is therefore not a promoter of healthy skin. To quench your thirst, opt for coconut water instead. Mikler notes that the electrolytes contained within it help to support healthy skin. It also contains potassium which helps boost blood circulation to deliver more nutrients and oxygen to the skin.