Like most female celebrities, Kendra treats herself to professional spa services in order to keep up her youthful glow (whoever said it was easy to be a model?). But there’s no need to spend big bucks on beauty treatments—believe it or not, the best ingredients for your face can be found in your kitchen. And health experts agree with the old saying “You are what you eat” since what you eat can make you beautiful, both inside and out.
There aren’t any foods that will turn back the clock―at least, not that we know of!” says Keri Glassman, MS, RD, CDN, frequent guest on numerous news and entertainment shows, like “Access Hollywood Live,” “Good Morning America,” and “The View,” as well as author of The O2 Diet and Slim Calm Sexy Diet (facebook.com/keriglassmannutritiouslife ). “But there are foods that can make you look much better and slow down the aging process.”
Here are five foods that can bring out your best beautiful self, whether eaten or applied directly to your skin:
On the inside: “Nature’s bacterial agent!” says Glassman. “When eaten, its antibacterial, antiviral and antifungal properties can protect your body.” She added that daily consumption of this sweet additive boosts the level of polyphenolic antioxidants in the blood, improving blood flow to the skin.
On the outside: Honey is good for treating acne and reducing redness. “It’s also a natural humectant, which means it keeps all the water you’re drinking in the right places,” added Glassman. Her recipe for Sweet Honey Cleanser: Mix ½ teaspoon honey, 2 teaspoons yogurt and 2 teaspoons of brewed green tea. Apply to face and leave on for about 10 minutes.
On the inside: “Besides being among the healthiest types of fats, olive oil tends to be rich in polyphenols, which aren’t just antioxidants—they’re also antifungal and antibacterial agents,” explains Glassman.
On the outside: It’s ideal for dry skin. “I like to mix it with a little avocado, apply, and leave it on for 10 minutes,” she says. “It’s so nourishing, you can almost feel your skin drinking it up!”
On the inside: Blueberries are very nutritionally dense and contain an extremely high amount of natural antioxidants, says states Howard Murad, M.D., FAAD, Associate Clinical Professor of Medicine at UCLA and author of The Water Secret: The Cellular Breakthrough to Look and Feel 10 Years Younger (http://www.murad.com/ ). “Antioxidants protect our skin by neutralizing free radicals, which can damage skin cells. So whether ingested through foods and supplements or when used in skincare products, they help the overall appearance of your skin.”
On the outside: Besides containing polyphenols, blueberries contain vitamin C, which can sooth dry skin, says Glassman. Her recipe for Blueberry Almond Scrub: ½ cup of plain Greek yogurt, 7 almonds (finely chopped), 7 blueberries (mashed). Mix and scrub.
On the inside: “This bright orange tropical treat contains vitamins A (which prevents dryness), C (which promotes healthy skin cells), E (which helps the body ward off sun damage) and papain, a digestive enzyme that is a mild exfoliant,” explains Glassman.
On the outside: A go-to fruit for aging and sun-damaged skin since the papaya (along with mango) provides a dose of protection against oxidative damage. Her recipe for Tropical Skin Rejuvenator: 1/8 cup ripe papaya, 1/8 cup ripe mango, ½ teaspoon coconut oil. Puree in a food processor until smooth. Apply to skin and leave on for 15 minutes.
On the inside: “A medium baked potato not only satisfies a sweet tooth, but it contains over 400% of the RDA of vitamin A, which is essential for preventing dry, flaky skin,” states Glassman.
On the outside: Sweet potatoes, as well as carrots, contain carotenoids, which protect the skin from sun damage and free radicals. Here’s her recipe for Carotenoid Protective Mask: ¼ peeled sweet potato (baked or microwaved until soft), 1 teaspoon thinly sliced carrots, 1 teaspoon plain yogurt. Blend in a food processor for 20 seconds. Leave on for 15 minutes.