Body & Fitness

Stop the clock: The new anti-ageing diet

You can slow down the ageing process with a healthy diet rich in antioxidants and nutrients, writes Sheree Mutton.

We’ve all heard the expression, “you are what you eat” and it couldn’t be more accurate. Your skin, hair and nails are largely influenced by what you put in your body.

Chances are if you’re eating an unhealthy diet made up of foods that are processed, sugary or have high levels of saturated fat, it will show on the outside.

According to Dr Libby Weaver, “beauty really is an inside job. When it comes to your physical health and beauty, the foundation stone is the way you nourish yourself through the food you choose,” she writes in her book Beauty From The Inside Out.

“How many of us stop to consider that our outer layer is merely a reflection of inner processes, completely reliant on the health of the 50 trillion cells that you are made of? When most people think about improving their appearance, they usually focus on a product, another ‘quick fix’,” she says.

“Yet when you consider that the skin cells on your face are a small percentage of the total number of cells in the whole body, it seems crazy that we don’t spend more time getting the majority of the cells functioning optimally.”

So which foods should we eat more of?

10 foods to fight ageing

Dietitian Lyndi Polivnick reveals the foods that will help you retain a youthful glow.

1.Watercress is packed with skin-nourishing antioxidants and minerals.

2.Sweet potatoes not only provide a great source of slow-burning energy, but they have the super-ability to help smooth wrinkles. Sweet potatoes are naturally loaded with vitamin C, a nutrient that is essential in the production of collagen.

3.Garlic has the component allicin, which when digested in your body, reacts fast with free radicals.

4.Spinach contains folate, which positively affects cognitive function and mood, as well as antioxidant properties.

5.Eggs contain nine essential amino acids which supply nutrients that nourish your skin, hair and nails.

6.Walnuts are full of Omega-3s that assist with anti-inflammatory factors and they also contain the antioxidant compound of vitamin E.

7.Dark chocolate can lead to smoother and softer skin thanks to the ingredient, flavanols.

8.Kale is a fabulous source of vitamin A and is a low-oxalate vegetable which doesn’t impact the absorption of iron and calcium.

9.Legumes and beans help maintain even blood sugar levels which can help create a clearer complexion. Low-GI carbohydrates (such as beans, legumes, wholegrains and porridge) release energy slowly throughout the day.

10.Salmon and oily fish such as mackerel contain essential fats and powerful antioxidants that produce anti-inflammatory factors, and they also provide protein for cellular repair.

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