You can eat your way to healthier, more beautiful skin. According to Colombian skin expert Dr. Maribel Pedrozo antidotes to greasy skin, acne and dry lips can be found right in your kitchen. The owner of Biobell Oriental Medspa in Miami, whose clients include actress and TV host Adamari Lopez and singer Karol G, shared miracle foods that can improve your skin with PEOPLE CHICA.
Jot this down on your grocery list: salmon, berries, grapes, green leafy vegetables (such as kale and spinach) and green tea. “They improve the skin due to their high content of vitamins, minerals and amino acids and their powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties,” Pedrozo says.
The “Beauty Alchemist,” as she’s known by her VIP clients, says that sparkling water is also a great beauty aid. It can be used to wash your face, helping to close pores and reduce shine (improving greasy skin and acne). Also staying hydrated and applying cocoa butter can be a simple cure to dry, cracked lips. If that doesn’t do the trick, Pedrozo recommends using a lip balm with SPF.
Drinking plenty of water and eating right can radically improve the health of your skin, she assures, so stay away from sugary foods, sodas, canned and processed foods. Instead, Pedrozo recommends stocking the fridge with skin-loving products like sardines, strawberries, dark chocolate, avocado, broccoli, olive oil, brown rice, yucca and pumpkin.
“They are all antioxidants that attack free radicals, which damage the skin’s collagen fiber” Pedrozo says of these ingredients. “These all help to hydrate the skin and make it look fresh and rejuvenated.” The expert recommends making a facial mask with mashed pumpkin, avocado and olive oil to help dry skin. Another perk? “Pumpkin, brown rice and yucca also aid in digestion and weight-loss,” she adds.
Other great anti-aging spices to keep in your kitchen cabinet are turmeric, cinnamon, ginger, saffron and black garlic. Turmeric’s anti-bacterial properties can also improve acne and oily skin. Ginger can help even skin tone, cinnamon can help unclog open pores, and saffron helps restore skin’s glow by improving blood circulation.
“Turmeric, cinnamon, ginger, saffron and black garlic are all used in Oriental, Ayurvedic and alternative medicines as they contain over 30 antioxidants that protect against aging,” Pedrozo reveals. “They improve skin’s appearance by removing toxins, reducing inflammation and stimulating circulation. This allows more nutrients to be absorbed by the skin. The antioxidant properties of these spices prevent free radical damage and preserve the skin’s youthful look, making it more elastic and firm.”
You can also whip up your own natural beauty masks, she says, with items you have at home. Some of her favorite home remedies are a plain yogurt mask with honey and half a spoonful of lemon juice (for acne), an avocado mask with olive oil (to hydrate) or a mask of mashed strawberries and berries with honey (to exfoliate). So before you spend a fortune on skin care products, check the fridge.