Sunblock is a must when heading outside into the sunny rays of summer, but did you know you can actually add another layer of protection with food? Here are 7 foods you can eat that will protect you from a summer sunburn and help you heal if it’s already too late.
Omega 3 fatty acids are essential for reducing (and preventing) the effect of sun, and are important in reducing the risk of some skin cancers all together. Studies have shown that these essential fatty acids also slows the rate of a sunburn, just like sunscreen.
Along with its superfood brethren flaxseeds, chia seeds contains 2,500mg of omega-3s in a single tablespoon. Plus, they can be added to ANYTHING: soups, cereals, smoothies…or just add some water or nut milk and let the seeds soak up the liquid to form a creamy chia “pudding.”
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Walnuts pack even more of an omega-3 punch, with 2,500 mg in 1/4 cup (that’s about a small handful of nuts). Both walnuts and almonds are high in vitamin E, which is a vital antioxidant found to help ward off skin damage when paired with beta-carotene rich foods (carrots, sweet potatoes and other orange plant foods).
British researches found that consuming lycopene-rich tomato paste may protect against sunburn and sun-induced skin aging
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Strawberries & Raspberries
Researches proved that strawberry extract added to skin cell cultures “acts as a protector against ultraviolet radiation as well as increasing its viability and reducing damage to DNA.”
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And the same pigment that gives raspberries their red hue also protects them from oxidative damage. Fruit salad time!
Full of vitamin C, this antioxidant bomb of a fruit is a great skin protector.
One study found that: The use of polyphenols (the antioxidant found in green tea) in combination with sunscreens or skin care lotions may provide an effective strategy for mitigating the effects of UV radiation that will lead to the prevention of the skin from different skin diseases caused by excessive sun exposures including the risk of non-melanoma skin cancer in humans.
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Just like carrots, sweet potatoes are high in beta-carotene and vitamin C, which doubles the potency of this skin-protecting food. (And, yes, yams are sweet potatoes).