Enjoying the warmth of the sun on your skin, is one of the great pleasures of summer.
Moderate doses of sunshine help your body produce vitamin D. This essential vitamin keeps your bones good and strong, and even helps ward off diabetes and some cancers.
ON THE BEACH
In excess however, we all know that the ultraviolet radiation in sunlight is strongly aging for your skin. It promotes collagen breakdown and the formation of damaging free radicals.
On the beach, sunscreens may be the most practical option, and I recommend choosing one based on zinc oxide, with no alcohol or perfumes.
DAY TO DAY SUN CARE
For day to day use, reports about the toxicity and absorption of some of the chemicals and preservatives in some sunscreen products, mean that I prefer a more natural approach.
Simple steps like wearing a hat, cooling natural fibres, and long sleeves, plus eating a diet rich in skin-enhancing fruits and vegetables, may be just what your skin needs.
These delicious sun-protective superfoods will not only do you all kinds of good on the inside, but can be protective for your skin as well.
Nourish your skin deeply from the inside, and it will keep looking fantastic on the outside.
Tomatoes are packed with an antioxidant called lycopene, and clinical trials of regular consumption have shown they help protect your skin against sunburn. Watermelons are also rich in lycopene.
The antioxidant beta carotene, found in abundance in orange foods like carrots and sweet potatoes, has been shown to even reverse sun damage.
The vitamin C in strawberries is another potent antioxidant, great for fighting those pesky free radicals.
A botanical compound in green tea – a polyphenol called EGCG – also fights free radicals, and reduces inflammation.
Pomegranates and dark chocolate are rich in antioxidant flavonoids.
The glorious curcumin in turmeric is a strong antioxidant and anti-inflammatory.
And of course there are more – the vitamin E in almonds, the omega three oils and selenium in oily fishes, the flavonoids in red wine – so many delicious ways to do yourself good.