Ahhhhh, summer. Daydreaming of white sand between my toes, a cool breeze misted with salt spray from aquamarine oceans, and a juicy, green coconut garnished with a little umbrella and a straw to sip from.
You know those times when you have a little angel and a little devil that sits on each of your shoulders and tries to talk you into doing things? Well, they have made themselves quite comfy on my shoulders ever since entering med school. Simple things suddenly become complicated and suddenly that coconut dream with the mini umbrella goes *poof.*
Let’s wear this cute sundress and flowered flip flops! But no, no, no, says the angel on my other shoulder. Where’s your sunscreen? And where’s your long sleeve shirt to protect your skin, oversized sunglasses to prevent eye wrinkles, and ski mask to prevent dark spots and premature aging of the face?
By the way, has anyone tried on a Chinese style face-kini?
Ok, ok. No more sundresses. Since dressing like a ninja in 90 degree weather might elicit some weird looks on the street, not to mention heatstroke, I’ll have to find something more fashionable and a bit cooler. And since I’m going all out, is there anything else I can do on top of slathering sunscreen on my skin, covering myself from head to toe, and going out in darkness a la vampire?
The answer: eat your sunscreen. Just to be clear, I’m not actually recommending eating sunscreen. But, I think it’s pretty cool that you can help protect your skin from sun damage by eating the right foods. I get to eat AND protect my skin? It’s a win-win situation.
So what are the best foods for glowing summer skin? Here’s what makes the cut:
Almonds for alpha tocopherol (Vitamin E)
Cocoa for flavanols
Orange fruits and veggies like mangoes and yams & dark green leafy veggies like kale and spinach for beta carotene
Red fruits and veggies like tomatoes and watermelons for lycopene
Extra virgin olive oil and avocados for monounsaturated fats
Legumes like lentils
Omega three fatty acids, like those found in wild caught salmon
Ice cream… ok, so ice cream doesn’t protect your skin against sun damage. Shucks. Well, at least I tried!
Enjoy the summer!