Indulge in skin-loving winter foods for a healthy self - inside and out
12/27/2013, 6 a.m.
BPT Have you effectively "winterized" your home for the season? Plunging temperatures call for more than just cozy sweaters, boots and coats - they can also challenge daily eating and wellness routines, which can negatively impact skin. A personal regimen that effectively combines diet (chock-full of fresh, in-season foods), exercise, skincare and wellness this winter can be a powerful tool in achieving a glowing, healthy-looking appearance.
The Simple brand, a range of facial skincare products that is perfect even for sensitive skin, launched the Simple Advisory Board (SAB) to help women everywhere discover the benefits of a holistic approach to skincare. Advisory board member Ellie Krieger is a nutritionist, New York Times bestselling author and host of the Food Network and Cooking Channel's hit show, "Healthy Appetite." She believes that positive food and nutrition choices lead to beautiful skin and overall wellbeing. The guide below offers a good start.
Butternut squash— Squash is one of winter's most popular vegetables. Though winter squash is botanically classified as a fruit, it is nutritionally viewed as a starchy vegetable. Winter squash is filled with nutrients and is one of the top sources of beta-carotene, an antioxidant form of vitamin A that helps protect skin and speeds up the cell renewal process, contributing to healthy, supple-looking skin. Beta-carotene imparts a yellow-orange color to food and can also enhance complexion tone. Butternut squash is readily available both whole and in convenient pre-cut packages and it has a creamy, sweet flavor that appeals to just about everyone.
Beets— Another highly underrated fall and winter vegetable is the beet. High in folate, manganese and potassium, beets can also be found in already-cooked vacuum packs, making it easier to add them to a meal. When buying fresh beets, select those with the greens intact because beet greens, like other green leafy vegetables, are not only delicious, they are also packed with nutrients, especially vitamin C, which is important for collagen production.
Try sautéing cooked beets with the greens or some kale along with garlic and splash of balsamic vinegar. Or, whip up an elegant beet salad enhanced with watercress dressing by food-processesing the watercress, goat cheese, buttermilk, vinegar and salt until smooth and creamy, and add walnuts as a topper.
Tomatoes— Tomatoes are a crucial "skin food." They provide lycopene, which helps protect skin against damage from UV radiation. Canned tomatoes and sauce make it easy to incorporate this fruit into everyday meals. Cooking tomatoes concentrates their lycopene, and adding olive oil in tomato sauce helps the body absorb the antioxidant.
Whole grains— Whole grains are a valuable part of a healthy diet, providing a wide spectrum of nutrients and antioxidants, not to mention great taste and satisfaction. They are digested more slowly than refined grains so they can help you achieve a steadier blood sugar, which may reduce inflammation and acne flares and lower the risk of heart disease, diabetes and other health issues.
Quinoa has gained popularity recently, but other alternative grains like farro and bulgur are just as delicious and packed with fiber and minerals.