We all know that what you eat can make you feel better. But your dietary choices can also make you look better. While building strength and maintaining energy are more important than looking good, if you eat and drink right, you can achieve all three!
Here are five tips for foods and drinks that will fight wrinkles, keep your complexion smooth and glowing, and help you build lean, toned muscle. The best part is that those same habits will also boost your brain health, help your heart, and fight inflammation.
1. Drink up.
Want to know the fastest, cheapest way to get great skin? Stay hydrated! Like the other cells in your body, your skin cells are made primarily of water.
If you don't drink enough, your skin will look dry and dull and you'll lose the resilience that prevents fine lines and wrinkles. Drink water or antioxidant-rich green tea throughout the day, aiming for about a cup for every 15 pounds of your body weight.
2. Eat healthy fats.
Despite the 1980s myth that low-fat/no-fat was the answer, research proves that getting healthy fats in your diet is vital to looking and feeling your best.
Eating a good balance of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids is a requirement for healthy skin, fat loss, and great energy. Wild-caught salmon, fresh blueberries, leafy greens, and flaxseed are all omega-3 rock stars, which is also fantastic for your brain and mood.
If you don't eat enough of those foods daily, take a quality fish oil supplement.
3. Get plenty of protein.
Clean, lean protein is super important to maintaining healthy bones, muscle, and skin. A good protein source like grass-fed beef, wild-caught fish, or concentrated bone broth will give you the whole spectrum of amino acids and collagen you need to prevent sagging skin and keep your body looking toned.
If you're vegetarian, look for protein sources that are rich in amino acids, like quinoa and legumes.
4. Lower your sugar impact.
Sugar causes system-wide inflammation that can produce skin breakouts and weight gain. You probably already know to avoid soft drinks and candy bars, but sugars can hide in "healthy" foods, too.
To lower your sugar impact, stay away from fruit juice (it has as much sugar as cola) and alternative sweeteners like honey and agave, which are still broken down into glucose and fructose in your body.
5. Start the day right.
Breakfast sets the metabolic tone for the rest of your day. Getting a big boost of protein, healthy fats, nutrients, and hydration in the morning will show in your skin, muscles, and energy levels all day long.
Try a protein shake in the morning made with soy-free, dairy-free protein powder. (Both soy and dairy can cause breakouts and inflammation.) Add in coconut milk or avocado for healthy skin and immunity, plus berries and spinach for system-cleansing antioxidants.
Bonus tip: If you don't already take a quality multivitamin, add one to your daily regimen to keep your skin, teeth and bones, and muscles fit and gorgeous. Follow these guidelines, and when you look in the mirror, you'll see a healthy, happy you looking back!