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I always wondered, "is it true that you are what you eat?" Well, this may be good news for some of you and bad news for the rest, but yes, it is true. When we are talking about your skin and your face in particular, if you want a beautiful complexion and healthy skin, you need to include fruits and vegetables, protein, good fats and whole grains in your daily diet.

Let's start by talking about fruits and vegetables, which are going to be in great abundance since we are nearing summer. You want to get three or more servings of fruit and five or more servings of veggies every day! (preferably organic and fresh produce for the most nutrients) Why? They are loaded with skin-protective antioxidants as well as water, which helps keep your skin hydrated. That may sound nearly impossible, but let me break it down for you.

Breakfast: oatmeal with 1 cup berries (one serving of fruit down)
Lunch: 2 cups of greens in your salad with 1/2 cup of cucumbers and some added protein (that is three servings of veggies!)
Snack: 1/2 cup of carrots with hummus, an apple(another serving of veggies + fruit)
Supper: pasta with veggie tomato sauce, an orange and a little dessert (you did it!)

Now, let's tackle the whole grains. You will want to get about 4-8 servings. One serving equals a slice of bread or half a cup or cereal or grains. But, this doesn't mean just any bread or grain. Look for 100% whole grains on the label. Also try quinoa, brown rice, or millet. These all contain nutrients in their shell that help the body produce glycosaminoglycans.(whoa, big big word!)Those glycosaminoglycans assist in building firming collagen and elastin fibers. You definitely want that!

Ok, this one is a biggie - PROTEIN! Not only is protein essential for every single cell in your body, it also helps the production of collagen and elastin in your skin. Please get your protein from good sources low in saturated fat. My favorite way to get the majority of my protein needs is my Cinch shake that I take every morning for breakfast. It is fast, easy, and a great way to get 24 grams of protein, 6 grams of fiber, and 21 vitamins and minerals. The Cinch shakes are powered by Leucine, which helps your body keep muscle and burn fat! Major bonus! You can get your own Cinch shakes here: www.caranitz.myshaklee.com

It is hard to give a generic number for how much protein you need, since each body is different, so here is a good way to calculate your protein needs:

1. Weight in pounds divided by 2.2 = weight in kg
2. Weight in kg x 0.8-1.8 gm/kg = protein gm.

Use a lower number if you are in good health and are sedentary (i.e., 0.8). Use a higher number (between 1 and 1.8) if you are under stress, are pregnant, are recovering from an illness, or if you are involved in consistent and intense weight or endurance training.

Example: 154 lb male who is a regular exerciser and lifts weights
154 lbs/2.2 = 70kg
70kg x 1.5 = 105 gm protein/day

Now, let's talk about good fats. Yes, there are good fats, and they are so vital for your body, so don't skimp on good fats! You need 3-4 servings/day. One serving equals 1 tsp of a good oil like canola or olive oil, 1 tbsp of flaxseed or a handful of nuts. They help keep your skin soft and supple.

I know that you are not going to follow this perfectly, because no one is perfect. Our diets fall short sometimes. That is why taking supplements ensures that your body gets what it needs. In this case, we are especially talking about your skin.
My favorite supplements for skin health are Vita-Lea, Cinch shakes, and OmegaGuard. Vita-Lea is a multivitamin/multimineral that everyone needs to make sure they are getting all their nutrients each day. The Cinch shakes are full of protein, like we talked about earlier. OmegaGuard is the World's finest fish oil, ultra-pure omega 3 fatty acids and free of harmful compounds such as mercury and lead that are found in many types of fish and omega supplements.
All of these can be found at www.caranitz.myshaklee.com under the Healthy Nutrition section.

Eat well and you will look your best! Have a great day, everyone!

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