GETTING READY for summer can feel like a full-time job.
Between booking a bikini wax before hitting the pool and stocking up on sunscreen, there’s also the worry of being “beach ready.”
Of course, whatever your shape or size, all of our bodies are beach-ready, no matter what sun, sea and sand you look like in your cozzie.
But wanting to feel lighter, brighter, and healthier during the summer months (and beyond) isn’t a bad plan.
While there’s no magic bullet, we asked Dr. Carrie Ruxton of the Health and Supplements Information Service for some simple diet tips that will help you get in shape for summer and adopt new healthy habits, even when the sun returns. .
1. Protect your skin with carrots
The rich color of carrots and other yellow/orange fruits and vegetables comes from bioactive plant compounds, called carotenoids.
Studies show that including these foods in your diet helps protect your skin from sunburn and other damage caused by ultraviolet B light.
Carotenoids are thought to help by absorbing certain types of UV light, directly protecting skin cells and scavenging free radicals – harmful forms of oxygen that zap around the body and damage cells.
Increase your carotenoid intake by aiming for five daily servings of fruits and vegetables and making sure to include carrots, bell peppers, cantaloupe and mangoes.
2. Lose a few pounds with intermittent fasting
Almost everyone wants to lose weight for the summer, but somehow time flies and suddenly there are two weeks left until your vacation.
Crash diets aren’t worth the pain — and the inevitable weight gain — so why not give intermittent fasting a try?
The 16:8 plan consists of eight hours of normal eating and 16 hours of fasting (water or herbal tea only) and is a gentler method than the 5:2, where you should stick to 500-600 calories on ” young”. .
Remember to supplement with an AZ multivitamin and multimineral supplement when dieting or you will miss important nutrients.
3. Boost your hair with biotin and zinc
Hair often becomes dry and unmanageable in the summer due to the effects of the sun and frequent dips in the pool or sea.
Eating the right nutrients helps nourish your hair follicles, prevent breakage, and provide natural oils to make your hair shiny.
Key nutrients for hair are biotin and vitamin B5, as well as zinc.
Good sources of these are fish, eggs, seeds, nuts, sweet potatoes, beans, and organ meats, such as liver and kidney.
Allowing your hair to dry naturally and minimizing the use of straighteners will also help.
4. Eat salmon for summer immunity
Nothing ruins a summer like a runny nose or the flu, and no one wants to get a positive PCR right before boarding a plane.
While diet can’t keep you from getting infected with viruses, healthy eating puts your immune system in a better place to get to work.
We’re all advised to take vitamin D in the winter, but given what we’ve been through with the lockdowns, it’s worth stocking up on vitamin D with a year-round supplement.
Vitamin C and omega-3s are other important nutrients for immunity, so try eating salmon once a week and drinking a glass of orange juice daily.
5. Use citrus fruits to succeed in your skin routine
Hydration comes from within as well as from that expensive cream you apply to your face, legs and arms in the summer.
Vitamin C is an important nutrient for skin barrier function and helps reduce water loss.
Vitamin C is a key component in the production of collagen, which naturally plumps up your skin from within.
Berries and citrus fruits are great choices for vitamin C – why not whip up a morning smoothie or add a handful of berries to your breakfast cereal?
Vitamins A and E are also necessary for normal skin and you can find them in kale, broccoli, dairy products, tomatoes and cold-pressed canola oil.
6. Protect your eyes with egg yolks
Lutein is a bioactive plant present in certain parts of the human eye, particularly the macula and the retina.
It is believed to function as a light filter, protecting eye tissue from damage caused by sunlight.
Lutein is commonly taken by mouth to prevent eye diseases, including cataracts and a disease that causes vision loss in older people (age-related macular degeneration).
Several studies have reported the beneficial effects of lutein in protecting against these eye diseases.
Foods high in lutein include egg yolks, spinach, kale, corn, orange pepper, kiwi fruit, grapes, zucchini, squash, and parsley.
For a quick lunch, make an omelet with a few eggs and a handful of spinach.
7. Correct bloating with fermented foods
Bloating is usually caused by gas, especially after eating and drinking too quickly, or after drinking carbonated drinks – and feeling unwell, let alone when it’s hot and humid.
Constipation, food intolerances or irritable bowel can lead to too much gas in the intestine.
Other contributors include an imbalance between healthy and less healthy bacteria in the gut.
Probiotic foods and drinks can increase the number and types of healthy gut bacteria.
Eat live yogurt or drink kefir daily to help restore balance.
Add fruit yogurt to breakfast or use it as a base for a salad dressing as a substitute for mayonnaise and add things like olive oil and half a teaspoon of horseradish sauce or paprika for a real zing.
Mix kefir with a frozen banana, a cup of fresh pineapple, or an apple with a tablespoon of seeds for a refreshing probiotic drink.
Alternatively, you can take a quality multi-strain probiotic supplement.
8. Make Nuts Fun for Bone Health
We’re often more active in the summer, but there’s no reason to wait until then – and you’ll feel better about your pool-time cozzie if you start now.
Daily weight-bearing exercises like walking and running help keep your bones strong.
Bones depend on several different nutrients for their structure and strength, including calcium, vitamin D, magnesium, copper, zinc, and manganese.
High-quality protein is also important for bone health.
Eat dairy products, nuts and seeds for calcium and protein.
Be sure to get your recommended daily dose of vitamin D (10 micrograms per day) from a supplement.
Take a multivitamin and multimineral supplement to supplement the rest of the micronutrients needed for bone health.
Pre- and post-menopausal women may benefit from combined calcium and higher-dose vitamin D supplements targeted to prevent age-related bone loss.
9. Help fight hay fever with honey
Hay fever symptoms can be debilitating in early spring and summer.
Talk to your pharmacist about effective over-the-counter remedies, such as corticosteroid nasal sprays, antihistamine tablets, and eye drops.
Try Golden Eye Drops and/or ointment if you suffer from red eyes during hay fever season.
Many people swear by a teaspoon of local honey.
The theory goes that by eating local honey, you are consuming local pollen.
Many believe it allows your body to develop a resistance to pollen, reducing your reaction and relieving hay fever caused by pollen.
There are no definitive studies that show local honey can help relieve hay fever symptoms. Honey contains some pollen, but bees tend to collect pollen from flowers rather than grass, which is the biggest contributor to hay fever.
10. Strong nails – don’t forget the selenium
We all like our nails to look good and a broken nail is never good news.
Cracked nails can be caused by poor nutrition, such as a lack of iron, zinc, selenium, and B vitamins.
Biotin deficiency which is often described as a cause of weak nails is quite rare.
It’s best to stick to a healthy diet, including meat (for iron and zinc), eggs, and whole grains.
Selenium intake in the UK diet is low due to lack of selenium in the soil, so be sure to take a supplement that contains the Recommended Intake (NRV) for selenium.
Protect your nails as much as possible from cleaning chemicals by wearing rubber gloves.
Take care of your cuticles and keep them hydrated, especially if you frequently get your hands wet and plan to spend the summer in and out of the sea or pool.