The weekend is finally here, and we can't wait to spend time at one of our favorite places outside of the mall: the farmer's market. Packed with folks dressed in fall fashions, this outdoor scene is overflowing with colorful sights, sounds and foods.
A list of fruits and veggies to stock up on is a must-have. However, knowing which locally-grown goods have the best beauty benefits isn't always clear. So we asked Peggy Kotsopoulous, holistic nutritionist, culinary consultant and author of "Kitchen Cures," to provide us with a fall foods guide to get us glowing from the inside out.
Pumpkin, acorn and butternut squash are all rich in beta carotene (a precursor to vitamin A), which helps normalize oil production in the skin and fights acne and inflammation. It also revitalizes the skin by increasing cell turnover and encouraging new skin cell growth. Vitamin A also encourages the turnover of skin cells, which helps keep follicles free and clear, a crucial step in preventing acne.
Sweet potatoes contain vitamin A, which is an anti-inflammatory and helps fight off acne-causing bacteria. Vitamin A and another one of sweet potatoes’ abundant nutrients, vitamin C, work hard both to prevent acne and to heal it should it strike. But sweet potatoes fight acne on another level, too. In addition to their vitamins and antioxidants, they have a relatively low glycemic index, which helps maintain a steady insulin level and avoid the pimply dangers associated with hormonal imbalance.
This nutty-flavored treat is packed with zinc, an essential in the creation of new skin cells and an aid in protein synthesis and collagen formation. It controls the production of oil in the skin and adds color and brightness to the complexion. Acne is often a sign of zinc deficiency, so adding more zinc-rich foods can help clear up breakouts.
Since it's rich in vitamin E, munching on this leafy green vegetable helps keep moisture in the skin and protects the oils in the skin’s moisture barrier from free-radical damage. It also soothes dry skin and minimizes the appearance of wrinkles. The antioxidant lutein is know to keep eyes shining bright. And copper aids in the production of collagen and is what gives color to hair, skin and eyes. A copper deficiency could cause premature graying, so adding more copper-rich foods can keep color in your hair.
Vitamin C found in apples helps to firm and tone up the skin. It prevents free-radical damage, protects your skin cells and slows down the appearance of aging by preventing wrinkles. It’s required for collagen production, as well as for the protection of collagen fibers that keep skin firm.
Beets are a great source of anthocyanins, a powerful antioxidant that reduces inflammation (think puffy face or acne) and slow down the aging process, helping to prevent wrinkles.