Feeling your best and looking your best go hand in hand. There are plenty of foods you can eat that are good for your skin and help reduce the appearance of wrinkles, but what about foods that have the reverse effect?
Are you making sure to avoid these foods? Do you even know what these foods are? Let's take a look at eight foods that make you look older and what you can replace them with.
Carbs and wheat products are converted to sugar if you don't use them. High blood sugar, which is caused from eating too many carbs, results in a speeding up of the aging process within your body. Not only will this lead to wrinkled skin, it could also lead to weight gain. Keep your carbs in check — and unless you need the energy for a workout, it's best to grab fresh veggies or grilled chicken to munch on.
Research shows that Americans consume 3,400 mg of salt per day (no more than 2,300 mg is recommended and people with high blood pressure should consume no more than 1,500 mg per day). Salt raises your blood pressure, puts you at risk for cardiovascular disease and leaves you feeling bloated — which we all know makes you look tired and worn out. We recommend seasoning your food with spices instead, such as fresh herbs or our personal favorite — Mrs. Dash natural salt-free seasonings.
Fast-food hamburgers contain more trans fat than will ever be allowed. Trans fat stiffens your arteries and makes your skin appear stiff and dull. It also can make you feel sick, tired and energy-less. Instead of hitting the drive-thru, plan ahead and pack a lunch that's healthy. If you must, choose one of these healthier fast food restaurants.
Caffeine — found in energy drinks, sodas and coffee — dehydrates the body. Not being hydrated affects the skin in major ways — including maximizing your chances for wrinkles, fine lines, aging spots and dullness. It also interferes with your sleep, and lack of sleep is a great way to instantly age 10 years. If you have to have your morning coffee, make sure to drink plenty of water to stay hydrated.
Similar to caffeine, alcohol dehydrates your body and can wreak havoc on your skin over time. A drink here and there won't cause much of a difference, but if you're a regular drinker you may want to switch to lighter varieties of alcohol (such as light beer or skinny margaritas) and up your intake of water.
Extremely processed oils — such as vegetable oil, canola oil and soybean oil — damage your cell membranes. In short, if you consume these oils on a regular basis, you'll age faster and be at a much greater risk for heart disease. Instead, choose coconut oil or olive oil.
Doughnuts, cakes, brownies and other sweet, sugary items are your skin's worst enemy. They makes it thin, brittle and more fragile (fragile skin equals wrinkly skin). Since sugar is bad all around — yet so hard to avoid — we recommend following an 80/20 plan: 80 percent of the time you eat healthy and avoid processed, sugary treats and 20 percent of the time you can allow yourself to splurge a bit.
Skipping meals is actually worse for you than eating carbs or sugar. It ages your body at an alarming rate and puts you at a much higher risk for overeating the next time you do have a meal. Overeating leads to weight gain, which leads to feeling lethargic, which leads to looking older. Carry small, healthy snacks with you at all times to prevent going more than a few hours without food.
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