With fall on the way, I’m starting to look forward to seasonal fall foods—butternut squash, sweet potatoes, pears … all of those delicious, soul-warming foods that help define the season. Many of these foods offer an array of beautifying nutrients. (Think of all the vitamin A in the all of the gorgeous orange produce!)
Although I will definitely be making the most of autumn’s bounty, my everyday foods and drinks during the fall can technically be enjoyed year-round. Despite their lack of special seasonal appeal, these are the foods I cling to–especially when the weather is shifting or my schedule is filling up (as it tends to do in the fall!). Together, they serve as a beautifying bundle of stress-relieving, hormone-balanced, inflammation fighters. I hope you like them, too!
Best Beauty Foods for a Seasonal Shift
I love putting maca in my smoothies! Lately, I’ve been enjoying a maca blend called MacaBoost (Vanilla-Chai). It’s laced with cardamom, which gives it a lovely “warm” flavor perfect for fall. You can also try this Raw Buckwheat Parfait with Maca Chia Pudding.
Beauty benefits: Maca is rich in B vitamins and vitamins C and E as well as iron, calcium, phosphorous, zinc, and magnesium. Because maca serves as an adaptogen (i.e. a substance that helps the body have hormonally-balanced responses to stress), it’s a good ingredient to have around if you’re working on maintaining hormonal balance (read: clear skin!).
Matcha (Green tea powder)
We at Peaceful Dumpling love our green tea! Given its seemingly endless health benefits (including weight loss), it’s hard to imagine a better superfood that’s so widely available. I’m personally devoted to matcha green tea powder. I love making green tea lattes with a teaspoon of matcha powder, 12oz. of vegan milk (I mix soy and coconut), and a few drops of stevia. Served over ice, it’s a little glass of heaven. Matcha is also a good coffee swap!
Beauty benefits: This rich source of antioxidants is a beautiful ingredient to add to smoothies (not just green tea lattes!). Its anti-inflammatory qualities help protect skin from oxidative damage.
Chia Seed Blend
When I was traveling in Canada, I came across an organic “cereal” called Skinny B. Really, it appeared to be equal parts chia seeds, hemp seeds, and raw buckwheat groats. You could put a few spoonfuls in a small amount of milk, and it would make a chia pudding. I often added granola and fresh fruit to this chia seed blend pudding—and it made a delicious breakfast! I’ve recreated the blend at home, and I store it in a jar in my fridge. I’ll be adding this Skinny B-inspired blend to smoothies (and smoothie bowls), oatmeal, and cold cereal.
Beauty benefits: Chia seeds are a great source of antioxidants, vitamins, fiber, and minerals. They also have a good balance of fatty acids—and we all know that healthy fats are essential for supple skin. Plus, chia seeds are hydrophilic, and they absorb nearly 10 times their weight in water, so they’re amazing at hydrating us.
Tulsi is a mild-tasting herbal tea. It’s often paired with other teas or herbs (like rose, chamomile, turmeric, and green tea), and it’s pretty easy to find at health food stores. Because tulsi naturally caffeine-free, it’s a wonderful hot beverage option for after dark when you just need a warm mug to hold! (Of course, tulsi paired with green tea will not be caffeine-free.)
Beauty benefits: Like maca, tulsi is an adaptogen that supports the body’s stress response. Tulsi has been associated with improved oral health. Plus, it’s full of antioxidants for healthy, glowing skin. I love the “Sweet Rose” Blend by Organic India.
Steel Cut Oats
Humble oats will always have a place in my life. I prepare steel cut oats almost every morning. Not only is a warm bowl of oats comforting on chilly mornings, it’s also a great source of complex carbs that stick with me all morning.
Beauty benefits: Complex carbs like steel cut oats help the body maintain a stable blood sugar—and stable blood sugar is a boon to hormonal health and therefore skin. Oats are also a source of vitamin E and B vitamins as well as calcium, magnesium, potassium, selenium, copper, zinc, iron, and manganese.
What are your favorite beauty foods?
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Photos: Mary Hood Luttrell