The Beauty Secret to Get the Glow (4 before and afters)

Sarma Melngailis, a raw foodist

People spend thousands of dollars on skin preparations to make their skin look vibrant and glowing. They’re all topical products – products that we put on top of our skin. But if we spent just a fraction of the money we spend on these preparations on raw plants instead, we’d begin to see an immediate change in the texture and beauty of our skin, and save a lot of money too.

When you eat raw plants, you put more of the essential vitamins and amino acids your body needs into it. You’re also adding moisture – naturally. Raw foods have a much higher moisture content than cooked foods, simply because the cooking process takes out so much essential moisture. This is evident on hot days when we crave raw foods to replenish our bodies.

As leading nutritionist David Wolfe nicely puts it: 
“The skin and the face are a canvas that reflects our food choices”. 
A diet high in nutrient-rich raw foods makes the skin look fresh and toned, the eyes have a certain sparkle and the body is much more vital and energetic. In contrast, a diet low in minerals and high in carbohydrates or proteins (eg. junk food, sugary sweets, chips, too much meat), makes the skin age quicker and leads to inflammation, stiffness, rashes, etc. Hence the old phrase, “you are what you eat”.

Eating a diet high in raw plant foods provides your body with the best nutrition. This is because vegetables, fruits, nuts and seeds, in their natural, uncooked form contain the highest amount of enzymes, antioxidants, vitamins and minerals. (The same principle applies by the way, to skin care products made with raw, living ingredients. Your body is truly nourished by the existing life force and goodness of the natural, plant-based ingredients.)

Cooking at high temperatures destroys most of the enzymes, antioxidants, vitamins and minerals. It actually alters the molecular structure of food, making it harder for the body to digest it. When the enzymes present in raw plant foods are destroyed by cooking, the body needs to use its own enzyme reserves to digest the food, which takes away significant energy and vitality from the body. Cooking also reduces the water content of foods. Since what we eat needs to be converted into liquid first for it to nourish us, consider how much energy it takes to turn a plate of meat and fried chips into liquid!

Top 6 to Get the Glow

Leafy greens (like kale, romaine, parsley, dandelion greens)
Sprouts (like alfalfa, broccoli, mung)
Water-rich foods (like cucumber, carrots, lettuce, tomatoes)
Berries (like blueberry, raspberry, amla)
Chlorella & Spirulina
Seeds (like hemp, flax, chia)

David Wolfe's 17 Beautifying Foods

One of my favorite books is, Eating for Beauty, by David Wolfe. Here are his top 17 beautifying plant foods.

1.  Aloe Vera
2.  Arugula
3.  Burdock Root
4.  Coconuts and Coconut Oil
5.  Cucumbers
6.  Durian
7.  Figs
8.  Hemp Seed (protein and oil)
9.  Macadamia Nuts
9.  Nettles
11,  Olives and Stone-Crushed Olive Oil
12.  Onions
13.  Papaya
14.  Pumpkin Seeds
15.  Radishes
16.  Turmeric
17.  Watercress

The beautifying foods all have one or more of the following:
  • High concentrations of the minerals sulfur, silicon, zinc, iron and / or manganese.
  • An alkaline reaction in the body
  • Anti-parasitic effects
  • High levels of antioxidants (especially vitamins A, C and E)

David Wolfe says:
"The beautifying foods cultivate a renewed charm and charisma.  They add to one’s inner and outer beauty.  Mineral-rich, nutrient dense beauty foods are nature’s best cosmetics"
This is not, by any means, a complete list. There are always new beautifying foods being discovered.

April before and after raw plants

Antioxidants are naturally present in raw plant foods. They help to prevent and reverse free radical damage by giving out oxygen molecules. They also help to reverse skin inflammation and help heal scar tissue.
Minerals are very important and again, eating a diet high in raw plant food and particularly greens, helps to ensure that sufficient amounts of minerals in the body. When this happens, enzymes in the cells become fully activated, giving the skin, hair and nails an unmistakable glow, healthy look. In contrast, a lack of minerals causes inflammation, contraction, stiffness, degeneration and itchy skin.

Let’s take sulfur as an example. Sulfur is a central component of collagen and connective tissue, which provides elasticity and flexibility to the tissues. It also helps to prevent inflammation and is needed to create new cells. Adequate levels of sulfur in the body help to promote a radiant complexion, glowing skin and mineralized hair. Therefore sulfur is often referred to as “The beauty mineral”.

However, research has found that most people are deficient in sulfur and that deficiency increases with age. Cooking destroys sulfur in foods. Therefore it is important to eat raw plant foods rich in sulfur such as broccoli, kale, mustard leaves, garlic, watercress and arugula.

Cecilia before and after raw plants


What other kind of lifestyle changes can I make?

Diet can dramatically change the health and appearance of your hair, skin and nails but there are also other simple things to do to get the glow!
Make sure you are getting regular exercise. if you can not get to the gym do a light walk, weights at home, move or dance, just make sure you move your body at the very least three times a week.

It is time to quit smoking. If this is something you have not done yet, or are down to one or two a day...its time to address this problem. Smoking is one of the worst things for the skin.

Keep it organic. Try and avoid toxins or chemicals in your foods or vegetables. Keep it fresh.

Stress is never beneficial, therefore identify any areas of stress and adopt more effective time management allowing space for relaxation. Yoga classes or breathing techniques could be helpful. If stress is a serious consideration, counseling or employing a life-coach is a wonderful solution.

A couple before and after raw plants

Will raw plant food make a difference?

Yes. The greatest way to improve the quality of your skin, hair and your nails is to eat raw, fresh organic plants and juices. Beautiful skin starts from the inside out. People who switch to eating mostly raw food often see an improvement in their skin and look younger.

Women, specifically, who eat raw food notice a noticeable difference in their skin texture and skin complexion from the added minerals and vitamins they receive from the healthy foods they are eating. The raw glow it is called.

Jo before and after raw plants

Here are some great sources for creating fantastic skin:

1-CoenzymeQ10 is an effective antioxidant involved in the energy process and present in every cell in the body. CoQ10 levels in the body diminish with age. CoQ10 destroys free radicals and slows aging. This includes Spinach, broccoli and peanuts are foods high in CoQ10. 

2-Alpha-lipoic acid is a powerful antioxidant that boosts the strength of other antioxidants such as Vitamin C and E, and assists the body’s energy production. Alpha-lipoic acid can be found in spinach, brewer’s yeast, broccoli, tomatoes and peas.

3-Sulfur is a mineral present in every cell in your body. It is needed in collagen production and for healthy skin, hair and nails. Organic sulfur levels in food are lost when processed, heated or dried. Sulfur is known to help improve skin conditions such as acne. High sulfur content foods include asparagus, broccoli, hemp seeds, pumpkin seeds, red pepper, garlic, onion, watercress and kale.

4-Silicon is an essential trace mineral needed for healthy skin, hair, nails and bones. Silicon levels decrease with age. Fruits and vegetables are the richest source of silicon including apples, oranges, cherries, grapes, strawberries, beets, cucumber, carrots and green leafy vegetables.

5-Phytochemicals are plant chemicals that help the body defend against damage and are said to have anti-aging properties. Phytochemicals can be found in berries, broccoli, cauliflower, celery, spinach, carrots, raw cacao and bell pepper.

6- Raw nuts and seeds are high in Vitamin E which is beneficial to the skin. Selenium keeps the skin elastic and can be found in garlic, brazil nuts, onions and shallots.

7- Adding flaxseed oil, hemp oil or olive oil daily will keep you shiny.

9. Super- Oxide Dismutase (SOD) is a scavenger enzyme that reduces the rate of cell destruction and is considered to have anti-inflammatory, anti-aging, and antioxidant properties. It is found in barley grass, broccoli, cabbages, all leafy greens, nutritional yeast and wheatgrass.

Eat hormone-regulating foods such as alfalfa, flaxseed, oats, celery, parsley, rhubarb, fennel, and evening primrose oil. 

Utilize relaxation techniques and exercise to help avoid stress.
Avoid products containing the following chemical ingredients: alcohol, isopropyl myristate, lanolin, sodium lauryl sulfate, sodium laureth sulfate, propylene glycol, mineral oil and parabens. 

Top Ten Foods for helping to reduce acne: avocado, mangos/papayas, watercress, garlic, celery, olives, Brazil nuts, pumpkin seeds, herbs/wild greens/salad leaves, and berries. 

Foods to avoid or reduce: dairy products, refined and cooked carbohydrates, cooked fats, and meat. All of these foods are acid-forming in the body and cause a sluggish digestive system. If food travels too slowly through the body, toxins build up and are not carried away by the usual processes and are expelled via the skin, causing acne.

Sea vegetables including dulse and seaweed also are very high in minerals and vitamins and will benefit the skin.

What you think, what you eat, and how you feel about your body will also play an important role in your hair, nail, and skin health.

Live fully, love deeply, increase your health and remember to eat your raw blueberries. How we eat affects all areas of our lives, our nails, our bodies, our skin, our children, our relationships, our hair..
Believe that true health and shine begins today with every thought, every choice, every action and every swallow.

Thanks for reading! What do you think?

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