Expert Blog Compelling advice, stories, and thought-provoking perspectives straight from YourTango's lineup of Experts to you

4 Superfoods That Will Rock Your Hair, Skin, and Nails

Photo: WeHeartIt

You have never looked better.

I recently did a talk about how to eat for structural health (bones, skin, muscles, joints, etc). I did a lot of great research and I thought I should share my newfound information with you all! 

1 in 2 women and 1 in 4 men over 50 years old have osteoporosis in the United States. That's a scarily common disease. This is not something that just "naturally" happens. We can prevent it, reverse it, and keep our bones and bodies healthy well into our later years with proper diet and lifestyle choices.

Part of making good choices starts with eating foods that support our bones, muscles, joints, hair, skin and nails.

Start this week by eating these 4 foods.   

1. Wild Caught Sardines 

I know, sardines are one of those things that initiate the "yuck!" response, but hear me out.

Sardines are a SUPERFOOD. They are chock full of omega-3s which fight inflammation. They are full of vitamin D, which is difficult to find in food. They are loaded with calcium, selenium, and vitamin B12. All of which are super important for keeping bones and skin healthy. 

So how do you go about finding them and eating them? You can find wild caught sardines at Whole Foods, Sprouts, and Trader Joes. Good brands are Wild Planet, Brunswick, and Bar Harbor. 

I like to eat them by putting them with some hot sauce and eating them on organic corn tortilla chips (like Jacksons Honest) or on top of greens in a salad. You can also make a mixture like tuna salad out of them: Add to a bowel: a can of sardines, primal mayo, celery, salt, pepper, and some dijon or spicy mustard. Enjoy with potato chips or on gluten free bread. 

Get adventurous with your food! It's for your health. 

2. Bone Broth

Bone broth is literally the minerals and nutrients that create bones and connective tissues dissolved in water, so you can see how it would be great for bones, joints, and rebuilding all structural components in the body. 

The exact nutrient profile of bone broth is hard to know because it totally depends on what you put into it, but as long as it's homemade and made from an animal that was healthy (grass-fed, ate it's natural diet) it's definitely going to full of calcium, glucosamine, collagen, gelatin, and easily accessible amino acids (protein). All of these compounds are imperative to healthy bones, hair, skin, nails, muscles, and joints. 

Here is an easy bone broth recipe.  

3. Grass-Fed Beef Liver

Beef liver is another food that a lot of people scrunch their nose at. However, we need to get over our queasiness about it because it's another super nutrient dense, chock-full-of-good-things food. 

Just one ounce of liver contains a massive dose of Vitamin A and a series of B vitamins that rival a multivitamin pill: B2 (also called riboflavin), B3 (niacin), Vitamin B5 (pantothenic acid), B6, B12, and folate. Liver is also one of the most important dietary sources of copper, as well as providing significant amounts of selenium, phosphorous, and iron. And although liver doesn’t contain Vitamin D itself, liver consumption may have a beneficial effect on Vitamin D levels: one study found that fish liver helped reduce the risk of Vitamin D deficiency during the long, dark Scandinavian winter, despite the study subjects’ limited sun exposure.

We evolved to eat all parts of the animal, and so starting to eat more organ meats, starting with liver is imperative to making sure our nutrient profiles are full and ready for anything

Here is a round-up of 100+ ways to eat organ meat. Check it out and make it goal to include some sort of organ meat on your menu once per week. 

4. Great Lakes Powered Collagen 

Alright, this isn't really a "food." But it's something that you should most definitely start adding to your daily routine if you're looking to up your bone, muscles, hair, skin, and nail health. 

Collagen is the main protein for all connective tissue.

The body's natural supply of collagen declines with age, poor diet and lifestyle choices, stress, and gut flora imbalances, so it's important we up our intake and make good diet decisions so that our structural health is kept in tact. 

Collagen helps fight aging skin, wrinkles, joint deterioration, and helps strengthen the digestive tract walls so food can be better digested and nutrients can be better absorbed. 

Keratin, the main protein in hair, skin, and nails is hormonally controlled (this is why hormone imbalances can cause strange nail growth patterns, hair loss, and skin blemishes). Collagen can help re-balance hormones and increase keratin production which will help your hair, skin, and nails be strong and lustrous.  

All the nutrients, minerals, and amino acids are much higher in the grass fed vs conventionally raised animals. Therefore, it's best to get your collagen from homemade bone broth or from a supplemental source like Great Lakes Collagen. This powdered collagen is totally tasteless and dissolves in hot or cold liquid. 

Go on! Get brave and try these Superfoods this week and watch your hair, skin and nails thank you for it. You got this. 

This article was originally published at rEvolutionary Lifestyle. Reprinted with permission from the author.


Explore YourTango