Did you know that the food you eat influences how easily you burn while out in the sun? It’s true! While we strongly advocate for wearing sunscreen, we also recommend grabbing some of these powerful double-duty UV blockers next time you’re at the store. The more protection, the better!
“We all know carrots are touted for your eye health. However did you know they can also help protect your skin? Carrots are one of the best dietary sources of beta-carotene. Beta-carotene also helps protect the skin against the free radical damage caused from sun exposure. Because of this, carrots can provide increased protection against sunburn, especially when combined with vitamin E.”
“Strawberries contain a powerful combination of antioxidants and vitamin C, which both help protect your skin from sun damage. They can also help sunburned skin heal.”
“Almonds are one of the best sources of vitamin E, which protects and repairs the skin from sunlight. Almonds also contain quercetin, which has been shown to protect against UV damage and the wrinkle-causing breakdown of collagen. One study found that after participants were exposed to UV light, the participants who took the same amount of vitamin E found in 20 almonds had less sunburn than the participants who did not that amount of vitamin E.”
“If it’s green and leaf-like, chances are it’s also good for sun protection. Fresh herbs — specifically parsley, basil, sage, and rosemary — are packed with our free-radical fighting and skin-protecting antioxidant friends. Dark leafy greens such as spinach and swiss chard are all full of antioxidants like polyphenols and carotenoids, which may also naturally protect the skin from sun damage . One study found that eating green leafy vegetables helped prevent the reappearance of skin cancer in people who had previously suffered.”
“When you eat tomatoes, you are adding lycopene to your diet. Lycopene is a carotenoid and antioxidant that neutralizes the free radicals produced from too much sun, and minimizes any inflammatory response to UV damage by your body”, according to Mayo Clinic.
“Omega-3 fatty acids (found in many foods — and especially in shellfish and fatty fish) have incredible anti-inflammatory powers. Research suggests these compounds can help protect cells from free radical damage (like that caused by the sun) . Another study found that adding omega-3 to the diet (or taking it in supplement form) may help prevent some types of skin cancer.”
Red and Orange Fruits and Vegetables
“Lycopene, a natural pigment and carotenoid (read: antioxidant), found in tomatoes and other red and pink produce has been shown to aid in protection against some UV-induced skin irritations.”
“According to an article on greatest.com, the flavanoids found in dark chocolate has been known to improve the skin’s ability protect against some types of skin damage, including UV-induced issues like sun burns. Plus, the flavonoids can help keep skin hydrated, increase oxygen saturation, and boost blood flow!”
Green and Black Teas
“Green and Black teas (which actually start as leafy greens — surprise, surprise) are packed with polyphenols that can help stop cancer development by limiting the blood supply to the cancerous area. Some studies have found that green tea can help prevent non-melanoma skin cancer (in addition to some other amazing health benefits) . One study also found that people who drink one cup of tea per day have a lower incidence of melanoma.“