When I was growing up, I remember my mother often placing a plate of cut up apricots on my table as I studied, telling me if I ate them they would make my skin glow. These days, we’re constantly bombarded with articles in magazines that reference aspiring to “that glow” through exfoliating and a good application of fake tan. But what actually creates that highly coveted luminous complexion we seek and how do we incorporate it into our current lifestyle?
The answer lies in approaching our health holistically, both externally but more importantly, internally. It’s a combination of not only addressing the obvious in priming the skin, but runs much deeper in the type of foods we eat, how much sleep we’re getting, how much alcohol or stimulants we’ve been taking as well, the amount of exercise and movement we do through the day and how we deal with stress. These factors will all play an integral role in how radiant we look, feel and perform long term.
So how do we incorporate these factors into our already busy lifestyles? Here are my top 3 tips to getting your glow on, inside and out.
Nourishing ourselves with the right nutrients. We’ve heard the adage; food is medicine. What we put into our bodies will show in our skin, moods and energy levels. If we want skin that glows naturally, opting for fruits such as apricots, blueberries and strawberries along with pumpkin, carrots, wild caught salmon and nuts like almonds.
Replace any fizzles with plenty of matcha or green tea to boost antioxidant levels and plenty of water to plump and hydrate the skin.
The source of our food is also important, in the integrity of nutrients and sustainability of where it is sourced. Wild caught salmon for example will have a much more optimal omega ratio to that of the farmed variety, whist being sustainably caught.
Furthermore, by shopping at local markets and independent stockists, we support local and get a better quality ingredient that is better for the environment, our health and our pocket.
Aim for 30 minute of movement a day. Forget skin loufers, expensive anti-cellulite creams or “fat blasting” space suits a la 2017. When we exercise we increase our bodies circulation. This allows more oxygen and nutrients from our food to be absorbed into our cells and waste to be more efficiently removed. This can be as simple as a 30 minute walk around the neighbourhood after dinner, cleaning the house with music (and some wicked dance moves) on or some gardening.
Consistent movement throughout the day is what all the longest living people on earth have in common and here’s why: movement has the life enhancing effect of not only giving our biggest organ, our skin, a workout, but is invigorating for our heart and internal organs, our mindset and stress levels. It also improves our posture, life-span and promotes a positive disposition!
Practice mindfulness. When we have a mindfulness practice, such as yoga, stretching and mobilisation, meditation, journaling or guided health coaching, we are strengthening the neural connections in our brain, so we can more readily deal with the stresses of modern life. It also slows down our ageing process and has the added benefits of lowering blood pressure and tension in our bodies, giving us a positive effect on insomnia, muscular and joint pain and a greater sense of inner peace and wellbeing.
Approaching what is a superficial quest for glowing skin from a holistic approach cultivates a greater body and mind awareness through promoting optimal health and vitality. By addressing these aspects; in how we deal with stress, our work/life balance, creating more time for ourselves and addressing the stories we tell ourselves; in what we eat and how we move, we are ensuring a more positive outlook on life. Let’s make sure our story is one of self-love that allows us to develop a framework for ongoing wellbeing.