Midlife skin is not always glowing skin. And it’s not only dropping oestrogen levels that are to blame – although they do impact the production of your skin’s collagen. Are you eating the foods that make your skin glow?
By the time we reach our 40s, most of us have subjected our skin to sun damage, sun exposure and UV rays. We know we’re guilty of that. Our once healthy skin is now dry skin, and whilst we’re not interested in anti-ageing – we love our age, thanks very much – we do want our glow back.
What you eat is key to healthy skin. Foods with anti inflammatory properties can reduce inflammation and restore glowing skin. Nutritionist Alli Godbold’s recipes are packed with all the goodies you need to get your glow back.
Eat your way to ageing well – now that’s our kind of anti ageing.
Thai Tofu Red Curry
Tofu contains plant chemicals called phytoestrogens which mimic oestrogen, helping to raise falling oestrogen levels. These are the kinds of foods that make your skin glow. Try including tofu in your diet to boost skin health and great skin over 40 (and at any age).
1 tbsp olive oil
250g firm tofu, cut into small squares (2cm)
2 tbsp Thai red curry paste
200g green beans, trimmed
1 red pepper, cut into strips
1 green pepper, cut into strips
75ml vegetable stock (Marigold)
Half tbsp fish sauce
Half can coconut milk
Half tsp coconut palm sugar
4 fresh kaffir lime leaves, finely sliced
Large handful Thai basil leaves, torn
Large handful peanuts or cashews, toasted
- Heat the oil in a wok over a medium heat, add the tofu and sauté until golden on all sides. Set aside on kitchen paper.
- Add the curry paste to the wok and fry for two minutes, then add the stock to thin the paste.
- Add the beans and peppers and sauté until tender.
- Add the coconut milk, fish sauce and sugar. Simmer for a few minutes and add back the tofu.
- Remove from the heat and add the kaffir leaves, Thai basil and nuts.
- Serve with brown basmati rice.
Miso Salmon with radish and courgette salad
Oily fish, like salmon, provides essential fats which help to combat skin dryness. Ask any nutritionist for foods that make your skin glow, and oily fish will feature. For great skin over 40, these essential fats really matter.
2 tbsp sesame seeds
2 tbsp sweet miso paste
1 tsp tamari
2 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
4 salmon fillets
Small bunch coriander, chopped
1 courgette, spirilized or sliced thinly
50g radishes, finely sliced
1 tbsp freshly grated ginger
Half tsp tamari
1 tsp sesame oil
1 lime, juiced
- Preheat oven to 180 C.
- Toast the sesame seeds in a dry pan over a medium heat, shaking to prevent burning. Set aside.
- Mix the miso with the tamari and garlic and rub into the salmon fillets, place the fillets on a baking tray. Roast the salmon in the oven for 10-12 minutes until cooked through.
- Mix all the dressing ingredients together and set aside.
- Combine the coriander, courgette and radishes in a large bowl. Massage the dressing into the vegetables.
- Arrange the vegetables on a serving plate, place the salmon on top and sprinkle with the toasted sesame seeds.
Boost collagen levels by eating foods rich in vitamin C, as this is vital for the production of collagen. Broccoli, parsley, sweet red peppers and kiwis are all foods that help your skin glow and are your friend when it comes to keeping great skin over 40.
1 large head of broccoli, cut into florets
Fresh ginger, approx 3 tsp grated
1 tsp tamari soy sauce
1 tsp fish sauce
3 tbsp of water
1 tbsp olive oil/coconut oil
3 tsp sesame seeds
1 tsp sesame oil
- Heat the oil in a heavy based frying pan or wok. Add the broccoli and toss for a couple of minutes until it turns a darker shade of emerald green.
- Add the ginger and sesame seeds and continue to cook for a minute.
- Add the soy sauce, fish sauce, sesame oil and water and cover so that the greens continue to ‘steam fry’ for a minute until tender.
Roasted Red Pepper Soup
Include plenty of orange/yellow fruits and veg as these are rich in Beta carotene – a precursor to Vitamin A, which increases cell turnover in the skin and can reduce signs of ageing. Sweet red peppers, carrots, butternut squash, sweet potatoes and mango are all good.
280g jar of red peppers, drained and finely sliced
2 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, finely diced
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 tsp cumin seeds, ground
1 tsp fresh thyme leaves
1 tsp smoked Spanish paprika
200g red lentils, rinsed
400g can chopped tomatoes
1.2 litres vegetable stock
2 tbsp of finely chopped parsley
Salt to taste
Juice of 1-2 lemons
- Saute the onion in the oil until soft, add the garlic, cumin and thyme, then add the paprika, lentils, tomatoes and stock. Simmer.
- Add the peppers to the soup and continue to cook until the lentils start to break down.
- Stir in the parsley and season with salt and lemon juice adding some extra paprika if necessary and a swirl of extra virgin olive oil to serve.
Lemon and Ginger Tea
Great skin over 40 needs hydration. Drink plenty of water as this will keep your complexion hydrated and will also help to eliminate toxins from the body. Start each day with a slice of lemon in a mug of hot water, switch regular tea/coffee for herbal teas and always carry water with you or keep a bottle of water on your desk.
Fresh ginger root – approx. 2cm
1 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 tsp honey
- Grate the ginger into a teapot, pour 1 mug of boiling water over the ginger and let it steep for a few minutes.
- Put the lemon juice and honey into a large mug and pour the ginger tea into the mug.