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Six Foods That Protect Your Skin from the Sun

November 6, 2009 Le Cordon Bleu Los Angeles 0 Comments

Sunshine improves our moods, our health, and is critical in our growth and development. However, too much ultra violet radiation from the sun can be harmful. To protect your skin and your body from dangerous UV rays, eat foods that contain antioxidants.

Antioxidants are found in many foods and will work within your body to fight against free radicals, which include things such as UV rays, pollution, and cigarette smoke, for example. Free radicals cause cells to oxidize, but these five foods will help prevent that from happening.


Almonds have a high amount of Vitamin E, which is a common antioxidant and an important part of your daily diet. Other foods high in vitamin E include wheat germ oil, sunflower seeds, broccoli, and kiwi.

Green leafy vegetables

Foods such as spinach and kale contain the antioxidant lutein, which is a cartenoid or a pigment found in some fruits and vegetables. Studies have shown that lutein serves to protect the eyes, skin, and blood vessels in particular. By eating a diet high in green leafy foods you will protect your skin from sun damage that could cause wrinkles, discoloration, and skin cancer.


Lycopene, another cartenoid, is found in red and pink fruits and vegetables and has shown to provide sun block qualities similar to the SPF you would find in a bottle of sun block. While it is not near as much coverage (it’s a 3 when doctors recommend SPF 15), it certainly doesn’t hurt to add a serving of watermelon to your breakfast every day.

Brazil nuts

Selenium is an antioxidant and is also beneficial for controlling the thyroid and strengthening the immune system. Selenium is good for your skin both as protection from the sun’s rays and for keeping your skin young looking and healthy. Selenium is found in water, meats such as tuna and beef, enriched noodles, and eggs. Brazil nuts have the highest amount of selenium and make a great addition to any trail mix or salad.


Berries of all varieties are high in vitamin C, a powerful antioxidant. Additionally, berries have anti-inflammatory qualities similar to aspirin, which will help to soothe a sun burn.


Carrots are high in beta-carotene, a powerful antioxidant. When you eat carrots, squash, cantaloupe (mostly orange foods), your body changes the beta carotene into vitamin A. Studies show that vitamin A works to promote cell growth and cell regeneration. After a day in the sun, a handful of carrots can do wonders to recover the body.

In order to keep your skin healthy, you need to do more than watch your diet. It’s important that you drink at least eight glasses of water, maybe more if you are in a warm climate, and that you wear sun block of at least SPF 15.

This article is presented by The California School of Culinary Arts. The California School of Culinary Arts offers Le Cordon Bleu culinary education classes and culinary training programs in Los Angeles, California. To learn more about the class offerings, please visit Chefs.edu/Los-Angeles for more information.

CSCA does not guarantee employment or salary.


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