Look Great and Improve Your Mind with These Superfoods
You really are what you eat
Look great on the outside and improve your brain power, with these healthy choices for mind and body.
For your looks...
While some people reach for supplements to help keep their hair, nails and skin looking healthy and vibrant, everything you need for a more lustrous look can be found in the food you eat. Here’s our guide to the key ingredients that will ensure you look as good on the outside as you feel on the inside.
1. Vitamin E
If you sometimes look in the mirror and sigh at the appearance of another fine line or wrinkle, you’re not alone. Ageing comes to us all and you can’t stop it, but you can help slow it down and ensure your skin radiates health whatever your age. The most important factor when it comes to our skin is collagen production. Collagen is the naturally occurring protein that gives skin structure and elasticity, and as we age, production slows down – hence those wrinkles. Vitamin E has incredible antioxidant properties, which help your body produce collagen, plumping out those creases and increasing the elasticity of your skin.
Great sources of Vitamin E include almonds, sunflower seeds, broccoli and spinach.
If your hair is feeling dry and brittle it could be that you need a biotin boost. Biotin, or Vitamin H, is great for combatting thinning or weak hair and it also helps strengthen your nails.
You’ll find Biotin in all of the following foods: bananas, cauliflower, eggs, lentils, raisins and spinach.
3. Omega 3 Fatty Acids
If you want locks that glow with health, then you’ll need a daily dose of Omega 3 fatty acids. Not only will they add sine to your hair, they will also keep your scalp nourished and healthy by helping the skin surface hold onto moisture.
To ensure you get plenty of Omega 3 in your diet, opt for these foods: eggs, flaxseeds, sardines, spinach and walnuts.
The main component of our hair and nails is the protein, keratin, so a diet with a healthy balance of protein is essential for hair and nail health.
Protein-rich foods include chicken, nuts, whole grains and eggs.
5. Vitamin A
You need a daily intake of vitamin A for your skin to produce a healthy quantity of sebum, an oily secretion produced by the sebaceous glands which are vital for healthy skin and hair. Sebum acts as a protective barrier against bacteria that can cause acne and other infections and will also help keep your scalp and hair hydrated and healthy.
You’ll find vitamin A in apricots, broccoli, carrots and sweet potatoes.
And for the mind...
So, now you know what to eat to look fabulous, let's look at how you can improve your mental performance too. These five mind-enhancing foods will help bring focus and clarity to your life.
Spinach is packed with folate, or folic acid, and vitamin B12, both of which are known to sharpen your mind and help you focus. If you prefer your leafy greens warm, then gently steam your spinach. It only needs a minute, don’t overcook it or you’ll lose some of those vital ingredients. Ideally, just add raw spinach to a salad or make it part of your smoothie mix.
A handful of raisins on your morning porridge, or as a snack at any time of day, will help bring mental clarity thanks to their high levels of the mineral boron, which is known for its brain-boosting benefits.
High in antioxidants, blueberries have been clinically proven to improve short-term memory function, so you’ll never walk into a room and forget why you went in there again! Recent research by scientists at Harvard even suggests that regularly eating these super berries can help stave off the cognitive decline and memory loss that comes with ageing.
Coldwater fish such as salmon, tuna and maceral contain oodles of omega 3 fatty acids, which help promote healthy brain function, boosting your mental energy and even helping to combat conditions such as depression and anxiety.
Don’t save these nutritional dynamos for Christmas, make them a regular part of your diet and you should experience an improvement in your mental performance thanks to their healthy mix of Omega 3 fatty acids, fibre and vitamin E.