You’ve researched the best diets that can help your patients burn fat, build muscle, lose weight, and lose inches.
However, with the aging baby boomer population (those born between 1944 and 1964), and Generation X hot on their heels (those born between 1965 and 1983), you may have some of your middle-age and senior patients looking at diets that can help them maintain youthful skin, particularly for their face and neck.
So which are the best face-healthy foods out there to give your patients the youthful glow they want? Read more to find out.
Berries and other fruits and veggies that pack an antioxidant punch
Your patients probably already know about the high antioxidant value of blueberries, but they may not know that blackberries, cranberries, raspberries, strawberries and plums also pack a high antioxidant punch. In fact, a 2004 article published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry grouped these four fruits within those with the highest oxygen radical absorbance capacity (ORAC) values per serving.1 This means that just one serving of these fruits will provide the highest possible amount of antioxidants. The study also found that artichokes, prunes, pecans, and beans (black, red, and pinto varieties) also had high ORAC values.1
Antioxidants help protect the delicate facial skin from free radicals that can be generated from too much exposure to the harmful ultraviolet rays generated by the sun. They can also help repair some of the damage from UV rays that leave the skin dry, wrinkled, and discolored from sunspots. Antioxidants may also help fight off skin cancer that can also result from excessive sun exposure. Obviously, you should also talk to your patients about proper sunscreen protection if they will be out in direct sunlight for more than about 20 minutes.
Green tea and lotus for a clear complexion
Most people think of green tea as something refreshing to drink. They may also know that it has antioxidant properties related to fighting cancer. However, an interesting 2013 article from the journal Hippokratia appears to show that a preparation of green tea applied to the face can help control acne by reducing the amount of facial sebum (oil).2
For this study, a group of 22 study participants were divided into two treatment groups – green tea extract or green tea + lotus extract. All participants were extracted to use the extract on only one cheek for 60 days.
At the end of the study, the researchers found that both formulations dramatically reduced the amount of facial oil compared to placebo. However, they found that the combination formulation of green tea and lotus showed significantly better results than the formulation of just green tea alone. The researchers concluded: “Results suggest that synergistic compounds in green tea and lotus could be a promising choice for cutaneous disorders where elevated sebum levels are involved.”2
Water of life
We all know about the many health benefits of drinking water instead of sugary sweet soda pop. It helps with digestion, keeps circulation moving, and doesn’t add any calories. However, water also helps keep skin looking healthy and glowing. Because water helps keep blood circulating to the face, it will have that glow your patient will want.
Furthermore, it will keep the skin cells firm and full, minimizing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles that can often come with age. The 8 x 8 rule, or eight 8-ounce glasses of water, is an easy way for your patients to remember how much water to drink per day to keep their skin in top shape.
Your older patients are now more active than their parents probably were. They want that reflected in their facial features as well. A diet that features antioxidants, sun protection, and lots of water can help them achieve that goal.
- Wu X, Beecher GR, Holden JM, et al. (2004). Lipophilic and hydrophilic antioxidant capacities of common foods in the United States. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, 52, 4026-4037.
- Mahmood T, Akhtar N, Moldovan C. (2013). A comparison of the effects of topical green tea and lotus on facial sebum control in healthy humans. Hippokratia, 17(1), 64-67.