Sometimes we’re so focused on finding beauty in a bottle, we forget the beautifying effects of fresh, in-season foods. This spring, head to the farmer’s market and load up on these fruits and vegetables that give you a natural glow from the inside out.
These slender green spears are packed with vitamins A and C, which are essential for healthy hair, skin and nails. Registered dietition Sarah Waybright suggests pairing asparagus with slivered almonds for a skin-enriching veggie dish that delivers a delicious dose of vitamins A, C and E. Asparagus is also rich in iron, which helps with blood flow to deliver a healthy glow.
Did you know strawberries contain more vitamin C than oranges? Registered dietition and food writer Katie Fingerhut Heaney says these sweet red berries may help protect against skin wrinkling, cardiovascular disease and immune system deficiencies. Be sure to eat fresh strawberries right away, as they only last in the fridge for two days before losing their vitamin C content.
Kumquats are diminutive citrus fruits packed with vitamin C and loaded with antioxidants.
Nutritionist Rania Batayneh says that when applied topically, “kumquats can enhance the overall health of your skin and are shown to reduce hyperpigmentation and stimulate collagen production.”
She suggests quenching your thirst (and your sweet tooth) with these brightly colored, low-calorie cuties. Remember to eat them with the peel on. The fiber in the peel and the fruit’s pectin will help keep you full.
Feeling a little puffy and dry? Start the day with a glass of warm lemon water. Lemons can help balance sodium levels in our bodies, says lifestyle and wellness consultant Jasmine Jafferali. Too much sodium can make our eyes look puffy and dry out our skin. Lemons are also high in vitamin C, fiber, folate and potassium. Potassium helps with the internal regulation of the pH levels, balancing our body’s fluids and minerals.
Plump up wrinkly skin with these magic mushrooms.
“Shiitake mushrooms are the only significant vegetarian source of vitamin D,” explains leading nutritional scientist Dr. Martina Cartwright.
Vitamin D is essential in boosting skin elasticity and collagen, which minimizes wrinkles.
“These formidable fungi are also a great source of the trace mineral selenium, an antioxidant that helps regenerate vitamin C and vitamin E.”
For a great beauty-enhancing spring salad, Dr. Cartwright recommends mixing fresh greens with mushrooms, berries and asparagus and drizzling the veggies with a light dressing (see below).
“The fat in the dressing will enhance absorption of vitamin D, vitamin K and other nutrients.”
Light spring dressing
- 1/3 cup orange juice or pineapple juice
- 4 teaspoons olive or salad oil
- 4 teaspoons brown mustard
- 1 1/2 teaspoons sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons snipped fresh mint or 1/4 teaspoon dried mint, crushed
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/8 teaspoon white pepper
- Whisk together all ingredients and drizzle over leafy greens and vegetables.