By Romayne Warner
Just as the scenery around you changes with the changing of the seasons, so too do your nutritional needs. The nutrients you need in summer are a little different from those you need in winter, spring or fall, mainly because of the increased sunlight your skin will be exposed to. Taking in larger quantities of certain nutrients can make your skin less susceptible to sunburn, and may even accelerate healing in skin that has already been sunburnt. Here are five nutrients you should consider stocking up in next summer.
Vitamin E appears in many skincare products for a good reason. Vitamin E is an antioxidant and a key ingredient in many moisturisers, and has been shown not only to make your skin more resistant to sunburn but also to accelerate healing in sunburnt skin. The best way to consume Vitamin E is by eating more avocadoes, sunflower seeds and almonds.
Another vitamin you should aim to get more of in summer is Vitamin C. This power-packed nutrient is essential for the building of strong, healthy skin. Getting enough Vitamin C before going out in the sun can help your skin to avoid sunburn, and if you do get sunburnt, Vitamin C can help to hasten the healing process. Oranges, bell peppers and broccoli are all rich in Vitamin C.
Selenium is a mineral most people don’t pay too much attention to, but is actually very important in helping the skin to protect itself from harmful UVA rays. Getting enough selenium will not only cause your skin to become less sensitive to the sun, but will also help your skin become healthier and stronger overall. Brazil nuts, fish, shellfish, liver and sunflower seeds are rich in selenium.
Beta carotene, which is most famously contained in carrots, can increase your skin’s natural resistance to sunburn. In addition, carrots are rich in Vitamin A, which itself can promote skin health and hasten healing. People who are extremely sensitive to the sun may even be prescribed beta carotene supplements. Other than carrots, beta carotene can be found in pumpkin, sweet potatoes and spinach.
Lycopene, a substance found in tomatoes, can protect your skin from the ravages of sun damage. Interestingly, raw tomatoes aren’t the best sources of lycopene. Cooked tomatoes and tomato sauces and pastes actually contain more lycopene in a form usable to the body, so add some sun-dried tomatoes to your diet and enjoy a little ketchup with everything else.
While a broad spectrum sunscreen is a must during the summer months, your diet can play a large part in how well your skin holds up under the sun. Subsisting on ice cream and beer all summer long, as tempting it might sound, will do your skin no favours, so opt for a nutritious diet that supplies you with all the nutrients you need in summer and enables you to enjoy the warm months to the fullest.
– Romayne Warner is a full time self-employed blogging fanatic. Obsessed with finding small ways to save money every day, she enjoys sharing her frugal lifestyle tips and tricks with the world, she regularly writes about healthy living.