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The Best Foods For Your Skin

For John Romaniello, staying in great shape is just part of the daily grind. The author of, among other things, The Super Hero Workout, Romaniello is understandably serious about fitness. But unlike many of his peers in the business, he’s got a sense of humor about his muscles. The self-described “moderate bad-ass” is totally jacked, but also, like a normal human being, totally afraid of spiders. As such, he’s a master of translating expertise for the everyman, (as his blog demonstrates. We were lucky enough to catch the exercise guru in between reps and writing sessions to get a few tips on the foods that are great for your skin and overall appearance. Turns out there’s no silver bullet, but if you adopt some healthy habits that make your stomach happy, your complexion will follow suit. Here’s Romaniello’s wisdom:

Your Skin Is As Sensitive As Your Stomach

“Chances are, anything that upsets your stomach is going to upset your skin. Any sort of allergy can create inflammation, and one of the ways that manifests itself is with acne. Step one is finding out what affects you adversely. Go on a month-long elimination diet of foods that have the highest instance of allergic reactions. That’s primarily dairy and most nuts.”

You Are What You Eat

“There are a lot of easy food substitutions you can make will provide great benefits for skin. Instead of plain oil and vinegar on your salad, use pumpkin seed oil and apple cider vinegar. Exchange milk chocolate for dark, and white potatoes for sweet potatoes or yams. Add almonds and green tea to your diet. Substitute spinach for milk and bananas—it has just as much potassium and protein without the sugars.”

Antioxidants for Anti-Aging

“Aging has to do with cellular damage or oxidative stress, which is the result of increased free radical production. The easiest way to prevent the signs of aging is to prevent the forming of free radicals. Look for is foods that rank high in the ORAC rating—that’s Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity. It’s a measure of how effective against free radicals something is. Green powders and fish oils are especially effective.

Eat The Fruit, Skip The Juice

“A lot of people are hooked on acai juice (also in the high-ORAC rating family), but it comes with a lot of sugars and carbohydrates, which alter insulin levels and can induce signs of aging. It’s always better to eat the fruit than it is to drink the juice. That way you get the fiber and some of the slow digestion.”

Cut Back On Cheap Beer

“Hops have the second highest concentration of phyto-estrogens of any food. Phyto-estrogens are plant-based compounds that bond to estrogen receptors once they’re in the body and increase estrogen production. That can cause a host of problems. I’m not telling guys not to drink beer, but there might be greater benefits to having a bourbon or vodka on the rocks, Don Draper-style, than having a couple beers.”

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