Topical products, like creams and enhanced cosmetics, help to supplement our bodies’ own natural defences against sunburn by screening out especially dangerous rays. While these lotions and potions are essential for effective sun-care, it is possible to render them even more efficient by increasing the intake of certain nutrients. Your diet can significantly bolster your skin’s capacity to repair and soothe itself, and can even make it less susceptible to burning. If you’re keen to strengthen your UV defences, read on: I’ve done some research and compiled this list of 7 foods to protect from sun damage.
Table of contents:
- cold water fish
- red fruits and veggies
- leafy greens
- olive oil
- vitamin c rich fruits
- green tea
- dark chocolate
1 Cold Water Fish
Oily fish like salmon and tuna are excellent sources of omega 3 fatty acids. These contain eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) which, recent studies suggest, helps to increase the time it takes to get burnt in the sun. So load up on sushi (yum!) and enjoy better sun protection as a result.
2 Red Fruits and Veggies
Red fruits and vegetables (tomatoes, for example) are packed with an antioxidant called lycopene. This little fighter compound helps to bolster skin by eliminating damaging free-radicals that would otherwise contribute to burning and, in the long run, to aging as well.
3 Leafy Greens
Dark green veggies (such as kale and spinach) are also a great source of antioxidants. Like red fruits, these foods help to battle free radicals which contributes both to aging and degeneration, and to serious skin conditions as well.
4 Olive Oil
Indeed any ‘good fat’ is a great addition to a diet directed at boosting natural SPF. Eaten in conjunction with lycopene-rich foods (like tomatoes and red peppers), olive oil becomes an especially important component in the nutritional regime: it helps to facilitate the absorption of the antioxidant, and so makes it easier for your body to use it efficiently and effectively.
5 Vitamin C Rich Fruits
Oranges, grapefruits, guavas, papaya, strawberries … in fact most fruits have a relatively high vitamin C content. Increasing your intake will help to replace the nutrients lost during the day, and will help to boost the skin’s collagen production and to soothe inflammation caused by exposure to the sun.
6 Green Tea
Green tea is packed with polyphenols; these useful little antioxidant compounds are really valuable when it comes to fighting sun damage and protecting skin from harmful rays. They combat the aging effects of exposure and they bolster the body’s natural skin defences as well. Drink a big cup in the morning with your breakfast instead of coffee; in time, you won’t fail to see positive results.
7 Dark Chocolate
Apparently, cocoa has been shown to have natural SPF enhancing effects -- it participates in reducing sensitivity to the sun’s rays. Load up on the darkest variation you can get hold of; the higher the cocoa content the better.
While it remains absolutely essential that you cover up and layer on the sun block, you can bolster your topical UV protection by including these foods in your diet. They help to boost your body’s own natural sun defences, and they also combat the harmful effects of exposure. That concludes my list of 7 foods to protect from sun damage, but do you have any tips of your own to contribute?
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