Feeding your skin, hair and nails

Let’s face it (excuse the pun!) we all would love flawless skin and hair and beautiful natural nails but we can’t have it all!

People spend a lot of cash dollar bills on lotions and potions to improve their beauty but do we address one of the most fundamental aspects of beauty? Our diets? The power of vitamins, minerals and other nutrients can give your hair and skin a more radiant, healthy and youthful glow. Let’s discuss what kind of vitamins and minerals we can include in our diets to boost beauty from within.

 

Key nutrients for skin

Vitamin C is an antioxidant and helps to create collagen in skin. Aim to consume plenty of fruit and vegetables to top up on this super skin vitamin.

Selenium helps in keeping skin firm and protects collagen. It can be found in foods like meat, fish, eggs, nuts and seeds.

Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant and can help fight against skin ageing and wrinkles. Include almonds, sunflower seeds and spinach in your diet to ensure you get adequate amounts of vitamin E.

Omega 3 fatty acids are found in oily fish, nuts and seeds and these are necessary for skin repair and flexibility.

Vitamin A helps to repair skin and prevent skin dryness and can be found in oily fish, cheese, butter, egg, peppers and carrots.

Zinc in beans, nuts, wholegrains and spinach protects the skin from UV rays.

Of course, one of the key things we can do is protect ourselves from the sun by seeking shade where possible, covering our skin and wearing sunscreen.

 

Key nutrients for hair

Iron and zinc help hair to grow. We have already spoken about zinc but iron is present mainly in red meat and spinach (zinc as above).

Protein is needed for growth and repair of hair cells and for strength. Top up on meat, fish, eggs, pulses, nuts and seeds to get your fill.

Eat oily fish and top up on omega 3 fatty acids help to hydrate hair.

Biotin is a B vitamin which helps hair to grow. Root veg, liver, meat, egg yolk, wholegrains and nuts are all good sources of biotin.

 

Key nutrients for nails:

Save your pennies and do a DIY natural nail manicure.. from within! Eating the correct nutrients will ensure your nails stay strong, shiny and absolutely fabulous!

Calcium and Vitamin A play a role in preventing nails becoming dry, brittle and weak. Stock up on dairy foods and green leafy veg for your calcium and incorporate some of the foods mention above to get enough Vitamin A.

Other important nutrients for nail health include iron and zinc to prevent those white spots that often appear on nails, protein to keep nails strong, biotin for strength and folic acid to prevent reddish-brown spots on nails.

This may seem like a long list of nutrients and you might think you’ll never possibly eat of them but do not fear – a well balanced diet will ensure you get these nutrients!

Top 6 Brain Boosting Foods for Exam Season

We all use up a lot of energy and we know that fuelling their bodies is so important to keep them healthy and going all day. Fuelling our minds is just as important particularly when studying or doing exams. The brain uses glucose as an energy source so the correct foods as part of a healthy, balanced diet will make sure we stay focussed throughout the entire day. Here are some foods to include at meal times which I like to call brain superheroes!

1. Wholegrains– these are a low glycaemic index food which means that when they are eaten they release glucose slowly throughout the body. This is good for our brains as it means we avoid a sharp burst of energy and focus and then a slump and the inability to focus. Try to choose mostly wholegrain sources of breads, cereals, rice, pasta etc for meal times to maintain levels of concentration. Perfect for keeping us going during school, study time and at home!

2. Omega 3 fatty acids– these are essential fatty acids which cannot be made in the body and must be obtained from the diet. EPA and DHA contained in oily fish are super brain boosting foods and can be used very easily by the body. Essential fatty acids can also be obtained from plant foods like flaxseeds, soya beans, walnuts and pumpkin seeds. If you do not like the taste of fish and do not fancy any of the other plant foods listed consider an omega 3 supplement.

3.Green Veg: You’ve heard it before and I’ll say it again: EAT YOUR GREENS! Broccoli contains vitamin K which can help to aid concentration and brain function so these little green powerhouses are brilliant for our mind.

4. Blueberries – beautiful brain boosting berries! These yummy little superstars have been shown to help delay short term memory loss. Who would have thought?! Add them to cereal, yoghurt and salads or as a tasty sweet snack in lunchboxes

5. Nuts and Seeds– these contain excellent vitamins and minerals that help boost memory and thinking function. Pumpkin and sunflower seeds are especially powerful as they contain the mineral zinc which has been linked to a positive brain function

6. Avoid foods high in sugar and fat -or those which are highly processed as these will cause a sharp rise in energy levels followed by a slump. Swap the biscuits, chocolate bars and jellies for unsalted nuts and seeds, fresh and dried fruit and vegetable sticks. Of course we can all have a treat now and again, we are human after all!!

Check out our fabulous recipes page for some inspiration when planning meals for all of the family plus some quick, simple and HEALTHY lunches for school and work! Now go and ACE them exams!! 

 

Running for Health

Running-you may love it, you may hate it. Like me, you may find it difficult to motivate yourself to get up and just go for a run but afterwards you feel amazing! It doesn’t matter if you are a first time runner or running your 56th marathon, I applaud you. Running is such a great way to improve Continue reading “Running for Health”

Walk towards better health

Walking is good4u

Walking is good4u

Walking. Some of us do a lot of it. Some of us do NONE. I know myself when I’m stuck at a desk nearly every day I have to remind myself to get up every once in a while and move around. When it comes to 5pm it can be extremely difficult to force yourself to head for a quick stroll (especially if you live on the West coast of Ireland and it’s absolutely BALTIC!). Continue reading “Walk towards better health”

5 Reasons You Should Conquer A 5K

Conquer a 5k

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A 5K is the perfect race for beginners and is surprisingly easy to prepare for, here are five reasons you should conquer yours;
 
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Mood Boosting Foods

Mood Food - Mood Boosting Foods

Mood Food - Mood Boosting Foods

Tough day at the office? Argument with your other half? Or just persistent low mood? Everyone experiences poor mood at some stage and it can be a distressing and difficult thing to deal with. Chatting, exercise and a good night sleep can all help to lift our mood a little. Food choices can also play a huge part in affecting how we feel.
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Brain Boosting Foods For Kids

Brain Boosting Food

Brain Boosting Food
 
Kids use up a lot of energy. We know that fuelling their bodies is so important to keep them healthy and going all day. Fuelling their mind is just as important.
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Importance Of Nutrition For Development

Importance of Nutrition for Development

Importance of Nutrition for Development

The role of nutrition in a person’s development is of utmost importance to their lifelong health and wellbeing. Undernutrition may occur when certain important nutrients are not consumed in the correct quantities or are not absorbed properly to the needs of the body.
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