Beauty of Juice

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Although we are all familiar with the adage ‘you are what you eat’ and understand various ways in which our diet can affect everything from the health of our hearts to the risk of developing some types of cancers, science has lagged behind in determining the effect that nutrition has on our skin, hair and nails.

Things are beginning to change and old wives’ tales like chocolate giving you spots are now being replaced with a growing body of evidence that shows the look and feel of our skin, and how it may be protected from the damage caused by the sun, may be influenced by what we eat.

For centuries and the world over, women have used preparations that they apply to their skin to help beautify and protect it from the outside in. Now the modern-day chemists and physicians who work tirelessly to perfect contemporary beauty products that we put on our skin are working with nutritionists and dermatologists in the area of neutraceuticals, in other words, how foods and beverages can affect ‘beauty from within’.

 It is well known that vegetables, fruit and some fruit juices such as orange juice, are packed full of health-giving nutrients many of which are noted as being particularly beneficial to the appearance of skin, hair and nails.

It is a fascinating arena and one, that as a nutritionist, I have long believed in. Some of the science looks very promising meaning that we can confidently advocate a healthy, balanced and varied diet containing essential micronutrients for external benefits.

Other research currently being undertaken is providing exciting early indications of how eating certain foods may help in a variety of ways to improve skin quality and slow down skin ageing from the inside-out. The Beauty of Juice looks at the opinion of beauty experts and pulls together initial findings in this area. And, within the next few years, I am hopeful that the science will finally prove what nutritionists and skin experts have acknowledged for years. What this space…!

Spinach and Kale

CEW Research

Research undertaken with a panel of beauty experts at CEW (Cosmetic Executive Women) has revealed that 96% of professional experts surveyed in the beauty industry believe that a diet rich in important vitamins and minerals is more beneficial to your skin than when included in products that are applied topically such as moisturisers, serums and gels.

This research underpins the long held belief that beauty can come from the inside out. The panel specifically agreed that fruit and quality fruit juices are good ways of getting the beauty-enhancing nutrients into your diet. The research highlighted that vitamin C and potassium, both of which are found in good supply in a daily glass of orange juice, is beneficial to help maintain or improve and protect the health of your skin.

·       96% of beauty experts agree that you get the most benefit from nutrients such as vitamin C and potassium by ingesting them as part of your diet rather than putting them on your skin e.g. vitamin enriched creams or gels

·       95% of beauty experts believe that consuming vitamin C has a positive impact on the health and condition of your skin

·       81% of beauty experts agree that regularly drinking high quality orange juice specifically is a great way of getting nutrients that can benefit your skin

Susan Mahy, board director at Cosmetic Executive Women UK, commented; ‘Our panel of executive women in the cosmetic, fragrance and hairdressing industries concluded that the essential nutrients you need for healthy skin, hair and nails are most beneficial when ingested as part of your diet and have a direct effect on the skin.’

Beautifying Nutrients

There are many who believe that you can eat yourself healthy and certainly, eating a healthy, varied and balanced diet plays an important role in maintaining positive health and, together with plenty of fresh air and exercise, helps you to feel good about your lifestyle.

As an extension of this, and as the survey has found, there is strong anecdotal evidence that beauty also comes from the inside out and specific nutrients found in your diet have a major part to play in ensuring the clear skin, bright eyes and glossy hair associated with an attractive appearance.

There, of course, is no magic potion for long term health and wellness but authoritative dietary recommendations guide us to eat a variety of foods from each of the 5 food groups and particularly to increase our intake of fruits and vegetables since they are a rich source of important vitamins and minerals. In addition, by looking at the reported benefits of specific nutrients found in different foods, we can make assumptions on what the external benefits could be – making our daily food choices even more advantageous.


Key Beautifying Nutrients


Vitamin C

Ø Vitamin C is key to the production of collagen, a protein that helps in the growth and structure of cells

Collagen is the ‘glue’ that holds cells together helping to give skin its firmness and strength. Collagen is important not only for healthy skin but also for healthy, strong bones and teeth and is important in wound healing.

Vitamin C is also an antioxidant and helps to protect our body’s cells from the damaging effects of free radicals – these are unstable  molecules that can cause damage to our cells. Vitamin C is one of the most widely used skincare ingredients, and consumers heavily invest in creams and serums that contain vitamin C to apply topically. However, when a good source of vitamin C, such as orange juice, is ingested the benefits of vitamin C can also be delivered to the body’s cells via the digestive system.



Ø Potassium is an electrolyte important for the maintenance of fluid balance

Like vitamin C, potassium is found in many beauty products however many people don’t realise that there are a number of potassium rich foods out there that can give you this boost including oranges and orange juice.

Potassium is an electrolyte, which plays an important role in maintaining an optimal water balance and hence blood pressure. In fact, potassium plays an important role in many of the body’s systems including cell growth and division.



Ø Water is vital in providing hydration to all cells in our bodies, including those in our skin


This hydration also applies to the cells in our skin and good hydration may help the skin to look as smooth as possible. Vegetables and fruits such as oranges and melons naturally contain water.



Ø Hesperidin is seen as a super nutrient and is found abundantly in citrus fruits


Hesperidin is a flavonoid found in citrus fruits and we can think of it and the vitamin C as an inseparable double act with each one needing the other to do their job properly.

Hesperidin facilitates the formation of vitamin C complex, which helps to zap skin-damaging free radicals created through the action of ultra violet radiation on our skin from the sun.



Ø Lutein belongs to the carotenoid family of antioxidants


Lutein gives us a yellow pigment that has been linked to helping to reduce sun induced skin damage and to improve elasticity of the skin. Other foods you can get lutein from include spinach (12mg in 100g), oranges (0.115mg in 100g) and red peppers (7mg in 100g).


Folic Acid

Ø Folic Acid help reduce the feeling of tiredness


Other beautifying nutrients include:


Vitamin E – found in sweet potatoes

Betacarotene – found in papaya

Bioflavonoids – found in strawberries

Vitamin A – found in apricots


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