No, I don’t mean Banana Boat smoothies. I am talking enhanced sun protection via fork, knife and spoon. It probably doesn’t come as any surprise that you can pack in some additional sun protection with the food you eat – I mean, we already know that what you eat can help do everything from fighting disease to getting you glowing like a greek goddess.
Quick, true story… While on a family vacation recently, I was really bad about coating my kiddos and myself with sunscreen. Yup, I know – dumb. Bad mom alert, yadda, yadda, yadda. Anyhow, I was mentioning to my husband that it was odd that he was the only one with any sunburn, especially since he is usually least likely to burn. Then I had a flash back to reading something a few years ago regarding how certain foods can increase your skin’s sun protection. Interestingly, both of my daughters and I started eating and drinking (in my coffee) coconut oil about a year ago. They eat about a tablespoon per day, and I try to get anywhere from two tablespoons to 1/4 cup. And my husband, well he just thinks we’re weirdos – he’ll pass on coconut oil (but I totally occasionally sneak it into his smoothies… muah ha ha. Aggressive, I know).
Naturally, I had to google search to refresh my memory and see if the coconut oil had anything to do with our seemingly bolstered sun protection. Sure enough, one of our favorite bloggers, Wellness Mama has an awesome post regarding eating your sunscreen. In her words:
Foods to Avoid:
- processed foods
- vegetable oils (this is the most important for sun exposure)
- lots of healthy saturated fats
- lots of foods rich in omega-3s (fish, etc)
- lots of leafy greens
- 2+ tablespoons of tomato paste daily
Whether or not to wear sunscreen is a hot topic, and we try not to take sides in debates where there is no clear, right answer. So here’s what we will say, eating to enhance your skin’s sun protection is just plain smart and beneficial for your health in many other ways as well. And if you’re a sunscreen wearer, wear something that ditches the nasty chemicals. Our favorite sunscreen is Beautycounter’s Protect line. It is safe, awesome, and the whole family can use it.