As part of this year’s 30 Days to Glow Challenge, we’ll be sharing beauty-boosting recipes and an abundance of wellness tips and tricks to help you kickstart your journey towards radiant health. Be sure to follow us for daily updates, inspiration and motivation.
Taking part in the 30 Days to Glow Challenge is a perfect time to load up your plate with nourishing, nutrient-dense food. Along with taking a teaspoon of GLOW each and every day, here are the fridge and pantry essentials I’ll be stocking up on throughout the month to help me feel my best.
Fermentation is close to my heart—it’s at the core of everything we do at The Beauty Chef, and in my opinion is one of the simplest and most effective ways to support glowing skin, gut health and wellbeing.
Fermentation is a process in which bacteria and/or yeasts are used to break down the sugars and starches in foods. While there are many different methods, over the years I’ve discovered lacto-fermented foods to be particularly beneficial for gut and skin health. Predominantly using the Lactobacillus species of bacteria, it can improve the bioavailability of nutrients as well as provide the gut with a good dose of probiotics and postbiotics.
Think of it like soil in a garden—it needs to have the right bacterial balance and nutrients for plants to be healthy and lustrous. Your skin is the same—your gut needs to be in harmonious equilibrium for it to look it’s best.
I’m often asked about whether eating fat is good for your skin and my answer is always a resounding yes! Our brain, body and skin need fats in order to function well, and they are super important for making healthy hormones.
Essential fatty acids play a significant role in the skin’s function and are necessary for a smooth, supple complexion. In fact, they’re the building blocks for healthy cells; that’s why I created OMEGA ELIXIR, our vegan blend of omega 3, 6, 7 and 9 oils to quench dry, irritated skin from within. Even saturated fats, like butter, ghee and coconut oil, contain fat-soluble vitamins and anti-inflammatory lauric acid.
On your grocery list: oily fish such as salmon and sardines, avocado, flaxseeds, chia seeds, walnuts, grass-fed meat, butter, ghee, coconut oil, OMEGA ELIXIR
Antioxidants come in many forms; vitamins A, C and E for example, and in plant compounds as carotenoids, flavonoids, isothiocyanates, resveratrol and tannins, and they protect healthy cells from being attacked by free radicals. Free-radical damage causes inflammation and the breakdown of collagen and elastin, so antioxidants are crucial in preventing premature aging as well as helping protect the skin from sun damage, pollutants and other environmental toxins.
A reminder to buy and eat in season where possible—it’s not only cheaper, but better for your body too. In winter, foods are naturally more insulating and in spring and summer, boast more cleansing properties, working in synergy with what you need to function at your optimum.
On your grocery list: vibrantly coloured vegetables and fruits like berries, beetroot, dark leafy greens, broccoli, sweet potato, lemons, papaya and pomegranate, green tea, herbs and spices like cardamom, black pepper, ginger, turmeric, basil, rosemary and thyme
Eating foods that are high in protein gives your body the amino acids it needs to make keratin, which is essential for the health of your hair and nails, as well as the outer layer of your skin. One of the best ways to maintain metabolic efficiency and help keep your blood sugar levels balanced, protein-rich meals also help to keep you feeling satisfied, which benefits both your appetite and your metabolism.
On your grocery list: Organic free-range eggs, legumes, nuts, seeds, bone broth, sustainably-sourced seafood, tempeh and grass-fed meat.
Foods to Avoid
Certain foods cause inflammation in the gut, which in turn, can trigger problems with the skin. Gut compromising foods may include things like sugar, gluten, alcohol, processed foods, refined carbohydrates, processed vegetable oils and processed meats and dairy. Everyone is different though, so listen to your gut, and to the best of your ability, eat a healthy balance of low HI (human intervention) wholefoods.