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Can Your Diet Have Anti-Aging Effects?

We all know the saying: “you are what you eat.” And it’s true! As the body’s largest organ, your skin and all that lies beneath is dramatically affected by the food choices you make each day. Learn more about how your diet might help you achieve regenerating, anti-aging effects both inside and out.

Free Radicals and Their Effect on Your Health

Within your body, your cells are constantly interacting with other molecules and elements. Free radicals are atoms that have an odd number of electrons. Because electrons like to be part of an even pair, free radicals can interact dangerously with other vital components of the cell, such as the membrane or DNA. If this happens, the cell itself could function improperly or even die. The results of this phenomenon are often ones that we can see on the surface, such as wrinkles and skin dullness. Because foods that are deep fried in fats and oils can actually introduce more free radicals to our bodies, it’s important to consume them in moderation. What you eat can have a significant effect on your skin. Prevention in the form of eating well is the best defense for healthy-looking skin.

Your Anti-Aging Diet

The best offense is a good defense. Introducing molecules that interact with free radicals safely is a fantastic way to maintain your health, inside and out. The molecules are called antioxidants. Unfortunately, your body isn’t able to manufacture antioxidants on its own, so you’ll need to get them through your diet.

Vitamins E and C, as well as vitamin A’s precursor, beta-carotene, are good sources of antioxidants. When you think of a skin-healthy diet, keep brightly-colored fruits and vegetables at the top of your shopping list. Below are a few foods that need to be part of your daily diet for optimal skin health:

  • Spinach: In addition to increasing your body’s hydration, spinach is also full of antioxidants that keep free radicals from damaging your cells. Try adding a few cups of spinach to your next sauté, smoothie and/or salad to give your body a healthy dose of vitamins A, C, E and K as well as magnesium, lutein and iron.
  • Red Bell Pepper: Not only do the vibrant colors of bell peppers improve the visual appeal of just about any meal– this versatile vegetable is also rich in antioxidants. Protect your skin from inflammation and environmental toxins such as pollution and sun damage with the carotenoids that give red bell peppers their vibrant colors. When you’re craving hummus, queso or any of your favorite dips, reach for sliced bell pepper instead of chips (which are fried in oils!)
  • Blueberries: Blueberries are a good source of an antioxidant known as anthocyanin. This gives the berries their deep, rich color and also has anti-aging properties. Add blueberries to an afternoon smoothie or snack, or eat them by the handful for a burst of vitamins A and C.

As a bonus, many of these  anti-aging foods are also good sources of fiber! Both soluble and insoluble fiber can help your body stay healthy and vibrant as you age. To learn more about your cholesterol levels, blood pressure, or to get a variety of other lab tests, visit a MedPost Urgent Care clinic near you.

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