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Beauty advice
The old adage is true it's what's on the inside that counts. Looking your best starts in the kitchen‚ a healthy diet can yield beauty benefits and improve your skin.
According to Drs Roberto and Maurizio Viel, UK cosmetic surgeons and brothers, diet can help reverse ageing. It's a fact, they say in their book The Viels'Beauty Bible. 'It is possible to slow ageing and turn back the clock.'

Other world-class doctors agree. Dermatologists Dr Howard Murad, founder of Murad skincare, and Nicholas Perricone of Perricone MD Cosmeceuticals acknowledge that when it comes to our skin, diet plays a huge part. We've gleaned a few tips from their best selling books Wrinkle Free Forever and The Perricone Promise.


ABOUT THAT WATER
If you're a woman, about 50 per cent of your body weight is water; if you're a man it's 60 per cent, Dr Murad says. Most of that water (about 40 per cent) is within your body's cells.


That's the key to youthful, luminous skin. The common adage suggests we drink two liters a day but most people find that hard.

The problem is not that we don't drink enough, it's that our cells may not be holding on to it, Dr Murad says. One way to ensure water stays where it should is to take fatty acids and glucosamine in a supplement.


PROTEIN
Our bodies can't store protein so we need to give them a good dose every day. If we don't eat enough protein our cells break down and our body is unable to repair them, Dr Perricone says. And that's a recipe for lined and sagging skin.

Dr Perricone advocates eating fish, especially salmon, because it contains DMAE – an antioxidant that stimulates muscles to tighten and contract under the skin.

'DMAE is your magic bullet for great skin tone, keeping your face firm and contoured and reversing sagging,' he says.


AVOID!
Alcohol: A glass or two is OK but too much strains the liver and increases free radicals. You can end up with puffy eyes, tired looking skin and lackluster hair.

Sugar: Too much of the sweet stuff ages you. 'Many of us eat a diet that will positively age our skin on a day-to-day basis,' the Viels say. 'The average person eats a staggering amount of sugar. It may taste nice but it's wrecking your skin, creating excessive free-radical formation, which plays havoc with your skin cells. Sugar builds up around the cells, where it weakens protein fibers, making skin weaker and prone to sagging and wrinkles.'

Coffee: This common favorite increases the stress hormone cortisol, leading to trouble with the immune system, brains cells, sugar metabolism and weight gain.

'Bad' fats: Saturated fats, hydrogenated and trans fats can cause changes to cells

Additives: 'Chemicals are atrocious for your skin and hormones, so shun artificial sweeteners, preservatives, flavorings and so on,' the Viels say.

Soft drinks: Sugar or artificial sweeteners¦ need we say more?

The whites: White bread, pasta, and rice are 'additive city' and act in a similar way to sugar.

Salt: A little organic sea salt is OK but too much can affect your blood pressure and cause water retention, bringing on eye bags and puffy skin.


EMBRACE :

Green vegetables and fruit: These are packed with skin-loving antioxidants and plant nutrients.

Protein: It's the secret to being wrinkle-free. Fish, chicken, turkey, organic eggs, pulses, nuts and seeds.

Whole-grains: Swap the whites for browns and your skin will applaud. Try brown rice, spelt, rye, quinoa and oats.

'Good' fats and oils: Cold pressed olive, coconut, avocado, flaxseed, walnut and almond oils are skin lovers.

Herbal teas, particularly green tea: These are a great pick-me-up and rich in antioxidants. Green tea is good for weight loss too.


DID YOU KNOW

'Inflammation is the reason you get wrinkles and why you lose the healthy bloom of youth. At the top of the list of elements that create inflammation are sugar and high GI carbohydrates, which rapidly convert to sugar.' – Dr Nicholas Perricone

3 of a Kind :

Body moisturizer – apply twice a day for good-looking skin

1. DRY SKIN

Garnier Body Intensive 7 Days Soothing Lotion, $8.99. The active ingredient, L-Bifidus, helps fight dryness, so over time your body feels softer for longer.

2. STRESSED SKIN

Nivea Intensive Moisturizing Body Lotion, $6.49. Light and non-greasy natural minerals and vitamin E keep skin moisturized. This lotion absorbs in seconds.

3. SENSITIVE SKIN
Apicare Manuka Sensitive Delicate Face and Body Lotion, $24.99. Fragrance and color-free, this dream cream contains plant oils, Manuka honey and vitamin E.