Munch Your Way To A Natural Tan

Healthy Tan, Food That helps tanned skin
For those of you who prefer a little color in your complexion, but don’t want to scorch your skin under the sun or bake in a tanning bed; heeding to the fair warnings of your dermatologist linking skin cancer with UV radiation —there is hope. Yes, there are other ways to attain a healthy skin color —in fact you can eat yourself to a healthy tan. There are studies that have proven that eating lots of fruits and vegetables that are yellow or orange in color can impart you with a natural tan. Let’s explore this new concept of eating your way to a bronzed goddess or god.

Foods That Can Put Some Color In Your Skin: Carrots, sweet potatoes, tomatoes, pumpkin and cantaloupe are loaded with a very potent antioxidant called carotene. When you eat multiple servings of these fresh produce, it warms up your natural skin tone. Dark, leafy greens like spinach and kale also contain large quantities of beta-carotene and are also responsible for affecting skin pigmentation. Consuming large portions of these vegetables and fruits on regular basis can impart your skin with a natural and healthy tan.

A study conducted in 2011at the University of Nottingham UK, reported the effects of consuming large amounts of fruits and vegetables rich in beta-carotenes on the skin color. The results indicated that group of students consuming several extra portions of fruits and vegetables on daily bases for several months showed increased skin pigmentation due to naturally occurring chemicals called carotenes.

A study conducted in 2011at the University of Nottingham UK

The face in the middle shows the woman's natural color. The face on the left shows the effect of sun tanning, while the face on the right shows the effect of eating more carotenoids. The study participants thought the carotenoid imparted color looked healthier than a sun tan. (Credit: Ian Stephen, University of Nottingham)

So How Much Of These "Tanning" Foods Do You Have To Eat To Obtain A Bronzed Glow?
Unfortunately no one knows how long or how much of these tanning foods must be consumed to see results. The study at the University of Nottingham involved college students who were asked to consume extra quantities of fruits and vegetables over several months but a specific time frame or quantity was not specified. The biggest misconception about eating your way to a natural tan is that one's ability to tan with certain foods is variable and influenced by one's underlying skin type which is determined by skin pigmentation and genetics.

A Word Of Warning: Eating over excessive amounts of foods rich in beta-carotene can also have negative effects, namely a skin disorder called carotenemia. Carotenemia is characterized by a yellow discoloration of the skin involving the skin of the body including the palms and soles of the feet. It may be mistaken for jaundice, a serious medical condition involving the liver. However, carotenemia is a benign skin condition that is completely reversible once you stop consuming large quantities of vegetables rich in beta-carotene.

Your Natural Tan & Glow Food List:
  • ·      Carrots —When carrots are consumed regularly (and in moderation), the skin adapts a more natural and healthy-looking tone.
  • ·      Tomatoes, sweet potatoes, pumpkin, cantaloupe and apricots —These carotenoid rich fruits and veggies also improve your skin’s color while providing other health benefits.
  • ·      Spinach, broccoli and kale —These dark, leafy greens should definitely be a staple in your diet, as they can help your skin to glow with health.
  • ·      Olive Oil —Although olive oil doesn’t contain any carotenoids, but as it is packed with antioxidants and omega-3’s, it will give your skin a moisture boost vital for a healthy glow.

Final Words Of Advice To Attain Healthy Skin, Develop A Healthy Lifestyle.
Healthy color aside, it is always wise to eat healthy portions of fresh fruits and vegetables in one’s daily diet, as most of these fruits and vegetables contain powerful antioxidants, which have a protective effect against internal and external aging.

Now the final choice is your – munch on “carotenoid-rich" foods, lay out in the sun or spray-on a sunless self-tanner?


Let’s Unblock Your Sunblock Quotient

How To Use Sunscreen
Thanks to skin cancer and health faculties guided media campaigns we all have received the message loud and clear that the sun is bad for you. Sure, it facilitates life on earth, but it also wreaks hyperpigmentation-havoc on your skin among other serious effects like skin cancer and damages your collagen and elastin bundles leading to premature wrinkles and aging. And if the sun is the enemy in this little metaphor, consider sunscreen to be the soldier that shields you and battles on your behalf against harmful UV rays.

While SPF is a hero for sure, it can only really protect you from the aforementioned skin horrors if you are using it correctly. And most skin experts agree, people despite their best intentions continue to make big mistakes when it comes to correctly using and applying sunscreen. Because the efficacy of sunscreens is directly related to how they are used, this is a big deal.

So what are the common blunders? So glad you asked.

Not Reapplying
It's great you remember to put sunscreen on in the morning, however by the time the sun goes down at night, your one application in the morning has totally worn off. If you are in the sun, you need to reapply sunscreen every 2 hours.

Ignoring UVA Protection = More Damage To Skin
Research has shown that while UVA rays don't cause sunburn, they penetrate deeply into skin and cause wrinkles. US Environmental Protection Agency estimates that up to 90% of skin changes associated with aging are really caused by a lifetime's exposure to UVA rays. There is no rating to tell you how good a sunscreen is at blocking UVA rays. So when it comes to UVA protection, you need to pay attention to the ingredients. Look for a sunscreen that contains at least one of the following: ecamsule, avobenzone, oxybenzone, titanium dioxide, sulisobenzone, or zinc oxide.  Any of those should do the trick.

Grasping The UVB Protection SPF Conundrum – 15 or higher?
The SPF factor rates how effective the sunscreen is in preventing sunburn caused by UVB rays. If you'd normally burn in 10 minutes, SPF 15 multiplies that by a factor of 15, meaning you could go 150 minutes before burning. For the vast majority of people, SPF 15 is fine. Understand the high SPF myth and keep in mind that the higher the SPF, the smaller the increased benefit. Contrary to what you might think, SPF 30 isn't twice as strong as SPF 15. While SPF 15 filters out 93% of UVB, SPF 30 filters out 97%, only a slight improvement.

SPF rating and UVB protection

Layering SPFs
Using two products, say your moisturizer and foundation with sunblock in them, is fine, but thinking their SPF factors combine to be one larger, more powerful SPF is not. Women think that the SPF 15 in their makeup plus their SPF40 in their sunscreen equals a 55, which is just not true. In reality, the most you are getting is the highest level you apply, and that's it.

Relying On SPF In Makeup
Sunblock in makeup is usually enough to prevent a burn when used properly, but it isn't enough to prevent all the harmful rays that age the skin and cause skin cancer. Makeup products with SPF are usually between SPF 5 and 15, which is not appropriate for direct sun exposure. I always encourage everyone to wear a minimum of SPF 15 when exposed to the sun, and the higher the better! Makeup is also not applied everywhere that sunscreen should be, and we often miss the neck, ears and hairline.

Finding The Appropriate Sunscreen
The ideal sunscreen should be efficacious, aesthetically elegant, photo-stable, long lasting & preferably Oxybenzone free. These qualities would improve wearing compliance and prevent premature photo-aging. Look for broad-spectrum sunscreen with UVA and UVB protection with SPF 15. If you have a family history of skin cancer, very fair or sensitive skin, go for SPF 30 or higher. Ingredients with broad-spectrum protection include benzophenones (oxybenzone), cinnamates (octylmethyl cinnamate and cinoxate), sulisobenzone, salicylates, titanium dioxide, zinc oxide, avobenzone (Parsol 1789) and ecamsule (Mexoryl SX).

How much sunscreen should be applied

Be good to yourself and stay sun safe. 


Thigh Dimples — Embrace The Simple Truth

Fact — Curvy or skinny all girls have cellulite, and if anyone says other wise —by the powers vested in you by me — call their bluff. If you visit a pharmacy or cosmetic store there are shelves and shelves of space dedicated to creams and lotions claiming to cure cellulite — (encore) by the powers vested in you by me — call their bluff. Ladies modern medicine thus far has failed us and lamentably there is no permanent fix even on the horizon as of yet. Yes, there are multiple laser, ultrasound and radiofrequency technologies available in the market that temporarily help reduce the hallmarks lumps and bumps of cellulite, but they all fall short in giving lasting results. Research has shown us clearly that there are multiple causes working against our thighs leading to the appearance of cottage cheese skin. A lasting remedy would have to address the interplay between skin, fat, connective tissue and underlying muscle and currently there is none.

Peau D’ Orange Under The Microscope — Cellulite is caused when little bits of fatty tissue push through the fibrous connective-tissue lattice that is connecting our skin to the underlying tissues. The fatty tissue itself is soft, and the fibrous connective tissue is tough. Now imagine the soft fat popping through the open spaces between the tough strands of fibrous tissue. No matter the body shape, even little bits of fat can push their way through. Long story short: Fatty tissue (aka cellulite) can show up on all shapes and sizes, even super model thin frames.


If lotions, potions, pills and technology have failed us, it doesn’t mean we are going to lay down arms and embrace the horrific dimples of cottage cheese. Be pro active and keep your daily prevention shields up and keep the wobbly beast at an arms length.

Cellulite #DrShaziaAli

Skip Your Tele Date With Salsa & Chips — Avoiding salty foods and other water retention traps can help keep the appearance of cellulite at bay. People who retain fluids have cellulite worse than those who don’t. Introduce your self to low-sodium soy sauce!

Smooth Skin Is Exfoliated Skin — Seek out a gentle exfoliator, harsh exfoliators can chafe the skin making skin dimpling worse over time. You can try a home made sugar scrub because it dissolves as you use it. For this reason, it’s hard to over-exfoliate with a well-made sugar scrub. I absolutely trust the new soft, and body-friendly Braun Silkepil SkinSpa sonic brush exfoliating system for more efficient results.

Happy Skin Is Hydrated Skin — When you’re in the bath or shower, make good use of your awesome new Braun exfoliator or a body polish. After toweling off, apply a rich moisturizer while the skin is still damp. Keep in mind that fancy schmancy moisturizers may not be more effective. These days a lot of high-tech engineering goes into the development of moisturizers. While moisturizing ingredients such as shea butter are good to look for, it’s not easy to identify the good or bad moisturizers by merely looking at the ingredients alone. I’d recommend looking for a name you trust and price point you feel comfortable using every day. Ultimately, it is the daily use of a moisturizer that makes it effective. My personal favorite is AminoGenesis Cocoon that leaves my skin with a smooth and lasting finish everyday.

Cellulite Creams The Silky Truth — I don't want to be the one to break it to you, but there is no over-the-counter cream that is going to "cure" your cellulite. I really don't understand how smart, responsible people can think a cream or topical product can make a difference to cellulite. But if you are keen on feeding your frenzy to tame your dimpled thighs look for products, which contains restorative antioxidants like green tea or caffeine. It’s just conjecture on my part, but it may be that caffeine constricts the tiny vessels in the skin leading to slight local ‘dehydration’ in the skin that can prevent water retention, relieving pressure in the fat pockets under the skin and indirectly preventing fat from poking through and making cellulite look better temporarily.

Final Note To Self: Love Your Body — Learning to love your body as is, especially when it comes to something that's both natural and abundant in the female population, will save you a lot of anxiety and agony in the grand scheme of things. Live your life — cellulite be damned!