If eating kale feels like you are eating sandpaper and you hide the Broccoli florets under the baked potato skins to avoid eating them then there is some good news for you.
Yummy foods can be good for you too !
In fact, there are 4 foods that are good for the skin and can help fight the signs of aging.
Top of the list is chocolate. Who doesn't like chocolate ? The thing is it's not the chocolate you find on candy bars. And so called chocolate bars like Mars, Twix and Snickers don't really count either. We are talking about pure chocolate here and generally, the darker it is the better it is for you.
Dark chocolate has more cocoa content in it than, say, milk chocolate that you find on a “chocolate bar”. Cocoa is a great antioxidant that is said to fight free radical damage in skin cells. Free radical damage to skin cells cause wrinkles and fine lines on the skin.
So when you are looking for a healthy bar of chocolate look at the cocoa content (usually listed at the bottom of the bar). The higher the content the better.
Another way to get cocoa into your system is to drink it. I'm sure you had a mug of hot cocoa when you were growing up. Having a mug of cocoa on a cold winter night can help your skin but just make sure that you don't overdo the sugar and fat content in the milk (try soy milk perhaps).
Dark chocolate is very rich and it is actually quite hard to eat a lot of it but if you do develop this talent, remember that it's only useful in moderation. Eating a whole block a day is too much. Eating half a bar every couple of weeks is fine.
Another thing that can be said for chocolate is that it's a pleasurable eating experience. It could even be said to relieve stress when you pop a couple of chunks of chocolate into your mouth. Stress damages the skin and the whole body so this is another positive for chocolate.
Second on the list is kiwi fruit Kiwi fruits are not always easy to find in supermarkets and fruit shops. And they are often expensive by comparison to more common place fruits. So they may not be at the top of your shopping list let alone sitting in your fruit bowl. But they are yummy and really very good for you, especially your skin.
Kiwi fruit are great for fighting wrinkles. They are packed with vitamin C which is believed to help collagen synthesis and stimulate fibroblast growth. Collagen synthesis basically means how the structure of collagen is put together. Collagen has a coil like structure that, in skin, gives it definition and volume. This keeps the skin firm and free of wrinkles.
Third on the list is melon. Specifically water melon. Water melon is part of the cucumber family and just like the cucumber, it is a great way to hydrate the body. The name kind of gives it away but you can keep your body, including the skin, topped up with water just by eating a few slices a day.
If you find the taste of water boring then eating water melon could be an alternative. If the skin is lacking in water it will dry out, leading to cracking and flaky skin. This is damaged skin which is bad in itself but also makes it more susceptible to extrinsic aging factors like UVA and UVB radiation from sunlight.
Water melon also has it's far share of vitamins, notably vitamin A and C but also B1 and B6. The A and C vitamins fight free radical damage. The B vitamins are believed to help cells with energy production.
Last on the list – honey. Honey is yummy and a great natural sweetener but it's also has many benefits for the body. High on this list are it's anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial qualities.
Raw honey can actually be used as an antiseptic and applied directly to a cut to stop it getting infected and to promote healing. When it comes to eating honey, it is believed to also be high in antioxidants that can knock off free radicals that may be damaging cells. In the case of skin cells this free radical damage could be causing line and wrinkles, inflammation and puffiness and generally poor skin condition.
So having a spoonful of honey can help to prevent these sings of skin aging. Just like chocolate, the darker colored honey is better for you. This indicates the types of pollen used to make the honey and that less pasteurization or processing of the honey has occurred.