Food for beauty

Shahnaz Husain *

“Do I look my age?” Most of us want to prevent ageing, reverse ageing, or just age gracefully. All of us want beautiful, glowing, radiant and shining skin, hair. We spend literally thousands of our hard-earned money on skin and hair treatments and products at beauty salons for purchasing costly lotions and potions lining the counters at malls and big grocery stores to achieve strong , dark hair and flawless skin but the question is are all these products really worth the price, we pay when we can achieve these things by simply changing food items at our plates.

Beauty is not an overnight miracle. The secret to flawless, blemish and acne-free skin lies in nutrient-rich foods in your plate or bowl. Changing your diet is an underrated, efficient route to clearer, younger-looking skin.

Conventional wisdom tells us that glowing, healthy and clear skin truly begins from within. What you eat also affects your organs like hair and skin. Everything in the body is connected; so if your diet isn't healthy, it will damage your metabolism, cause weight gain, and even damage organs, such as your heart and liver and most likely show up on your face.

Here are a few beauty-boosting, nutrient-rich foods, vegetables worth eating every day which are rich in naturally occurring vitamins, minerals and antioxidants that all work together synergistically to create beauty from the inside out.

1. Walnuts

Walnuts, "tree nuts " have many characteristics that make them an excellent food for healthy skin. Packed with healthy essential fats, antioxidants, vitamins, trace minerals, protein and fiber, walnuts are a veritable superfood. The crunchy black and the regular brown dry fruit enclosed within harder outer is superb ingredient that helps in enhancing skin and hair wellness .

Walnuts are enriched with the goodness of minerals, vitamins, natural oil , selenium, antioxidants and essential fatty acids like Omega 3, that work in the best way to make our skin and hair strong and healthy. They are made up of 65 per cent fat and about 15 percent of protein.

Walnuts are well known for being high in monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats and Omega-3 fatty acids. The walnut, black and the regular brown both has been widely incorporated into skincare, haircare, beauty, aromatherapy and cosmetic products in India since long back . You can include walnuts in your breakfast diet by adding it in cereals like oats, cornflakes, muesli or alternatively you can take 1-2 almonds every day in the morning .

Consuming walnuts helps the skin look younger and healthier as it helps strengthen the membranes of your skin cells, locking in moisture and nutrients that keep it plump and glowing and keeping out toxins that can damage skin cells,

You can also use walnut oil topically to help ease dry skin. Anecdotal evidence suggests that walnut oil may help keep skin moisturized. It may nourish skin from within. Walnut oil is great for fighting wrinkles. The vitamin E in walnut oil may help fight the free radicals caused due to stress. and its regular application can actually help the fine lines and wrinkles to disappear with time .

Daily intake of 3-4 Walnuts may boost overall blood vessel’s functioning , thus bringing oxygen and nutrients to each and every cell which helps the skin to glow naturally and help your skin regain that healthy glow. Walnut oil contains potassium which is essential for regeneration of cells and hence accelerates hair growth. Its regular application on hair cleans the scalp by removing all the dirt from it fights hence preventing dandruff

2. Sweet Potatoes

Want to be more attractive at no cost ? Eat sweet potatoes. They are affordable, easily available and delicious. Shakarkandi chaat is one of the easiest and popular ways in which sweet potatoes are consumed in India.

Sweet potatoes are an excellent source of the magical skin-brightening combination of Vitamin A, E and Vitamin C which are important not only for general wellbeing but also slow down the ageing process . Sweet potatoes are also full of biotin, which stimulates hair and nail growth.

It is also a good idea to add some sweet potatoes to your salads too since the sugar in sweet potatoes is released at a slow pace making it easier for our body to absorb. Sweet potatoes have a low glycemic index and with over 6 grams of fiber per cup, help to regulate and potentially improve blood sugar. They can fight premature ageing.

Sweet potatoes have the ability to give a rejuvenating look to your skin. They contain skin-friendly nutrient vitamin C which has antioxidant properties and stimulates the production of collagen. that can combat ageing and dryness.

Mix half cup cooked paste of sweet potatoes with one tsp milk and one tsp honey and apply this mixture on skin evenly for 30 minutes and wash it off with lukewarm water for rejuvenating and radiant skin You can also simply rub a sweet potato slice on your face in a circular motion for 20 minutes. If you feel the potato slice has gone dry, use another slice.

Just boil and smash a cup of sweet potato and mix well with two tablespoons of beer. Apply the mixture to your face, neck and open areas and leave it on for 20 minutes or allow it to dry naturally and then wash your face with lukewarm water. Then apply a light toner or a moisturiser. Boil and mash sweet potato, add the honey and mix well. Apply evenly to face. Leave on for 20 min and wash off with warm water

3. Chia Seeds

Another great offering from the mint family, Chia seeds are an unsung hero that can do wonders to your beauty regimen. Chia seeds are a nutritional powerhouse containing 20% more protein than soybeans, plus added Omega-3’s that are critical to help prevent hair loss .

This humble superfood is packed with minerals and fiber and the perfect balance of essential fatty acids which can help fight early signs of ageing, reduce acne scars, and give you that radiant glow from within. These tiny black seeds are one of the healthiest foods on the planet which helps stabilise blood sugar levels, promotes smooth digestion and bone strength, as well as enhances hair and skin health.

For Hair Mask

Mix four tablespoons of coconut oil, half cup of honey, and a tablespoon each of chia seeds and apple cider vinegar. Heat this mixture for 30-40 seconds so that all the ingredients get mixed properly. Apply the mixture on the hair strands and let it sit for 30 minutes. Wash it off and have a shining and long hair.

For Hair and Skin

Take 2 tablespoon chia seeds in a bowl and add a few drops of hydrating coconut oil and heat the mixture to achieve soothing lukewarm temperature. Apply this paste directly on scalp/skin and let it dry in natural environment and wash it with clean fresh water

Alternatively, people with oily or sensitive skin can swap oil with filtered water and soak the seeds overnight to get the gel-like texture

Chia Seed Face Mask

Take 2 Tbsp Chia Seeds, 1/2 cup virgin coconut oil and 1 tsp lemon juice. Mix all ingredients well in a glass bowl/jar to get paste and apply the paste on your skin areas in face , neck and open area. Wash the skin with fresh water and pat dry.


Pineapple "wonder food" also known as Ananas comosus is said to have originated from South America which was discovered on the island of Guadalupe in 1493 by Europeans. The skin of pineapple is used to make alcohol, animal food and vinegar.

Drinking, eating, and topically applying pineapple juice on a regular basis is a powerful, proven way for you to achieve clear, radiant skin. Known as the king of tropical fruits, Pineapple is rich in nutrients and antioxidants. Eating pineapple improves digestion, reduces inflammation, and removes toxins from the body.

Pineapple juice contains a powerful enzyme called bromelain , dietary fibre and vitamin C which has the ability to help in good digestion and keep you acne, pimples and wrinkles free. Pineapple juice contains 120% of the daily recommended value of vitamin C which helps to contend the free radicals thus helps in the prevention of many diseases including prevention of pimples, acne, blemishes and wrinkles.

The presence of bromelain enzymes helps in exfoliate to sweep away dead skin cells. Bromelain makes the skin firm and flexible Pineapple juice provides elasticity and beauty to the skin by the synthesis of collagen. The formation of collagen also prevents wrinkles on the face. Pineapple juice improves skin hydration and makes your skin clear by exfoliating the skin and also shows the way to the dead cells from the skin.

It's a rich source of antioxidants and vitamin C is said to boost your immunity that it will make your skin smooth, supple and radiant. Pineapple contains vitamin A and vitamin B which helps remove the problems of brittleness and dryness in nails and cracks and split of feet.

* Shahnaz Husain wrote this article for The Sangai Express
The author is international fame beauty expert and is called herbal queen of India
This article was webcasted on October 24 2020.

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