One of my favourite things to do in the Perth Summer is, not surprisingly, hit the beach with friends and enjoy our incredibly beautiful coastline.
Deep blue water, bright blue sky & shimmering sand. On any given day above 30 there’s a high chance that I can be found at Cottesloe, City Beach or Floreat, basking in a little sunshine and gently working on my freckles.
Growing up with fair skin means that the fear of the sun has been drummed into me from a tender age, and as such, you’ll also find me covered from head to toe with SPF 50+ sunscreen, a hat & a light shirt for extra protection if needed. Couple this with multiple sunscreen reapplications and a once yearly skin cancer check at my doctors (I highly encourage this for anyone who spends a bit of time in the sun or is fair skinned) and I generally feel like I’m pretty much set up for sun smart success.
However, there is one more avenue we can take in order to boost our bodies’ amazing ability to protect us from the sun, especially when we’re dealing with old mate ‘hole in the ozone layer’ here in Perth – what we eat!
While it may sound like a pretty hippie concept, hear me out, your tastebuds & skin will thank you. Quick Q & A time:
Q: Why are some specific berries, fruits & veggies so high in antioxidants in the first place?
A: Because they have evolved over time to create extremely high levels in order to protect themselves from the sun. BLOODY GENIUSES! One of the main functions of antioxidants in plants is to prevent them from burning & wilting, so certain plants that are exposed to high levels of sunlight work extra hard to produce more, and in turn these benefits are passed on to us when we consume them.
If you’re now wondering what foods are best to snack on pre-beach, try one of the following:
– Acai berries. As one of the highest sources of antioxidants, this tasty berry is definitely on the list. Beaches and frozen acai bowls are a match made in sun-protection heaven, and as a bonus cool you down & contain lots of healthy essential fatty acids for smooth skin. I absolutely cannot go past the Acai Bowl at Natures Harvest in Cottesloe, topped with the gluten free muesli & dried figs, followed up with a dip at Cott Beach. It’s the most refreshing way to start a Summer morning!
– Cacao anything! Cacao is packed with flavanols (a special type of antioxidant) that improve the bodies ability to protect against UV-induced sunburns. Pick up a NOOD Choc Nut Smoothie and be on your way.
– Goji berries. Similar to acai, goji berries are packed full of an impressive variety of antioxidants. My New Roots has an amazing little recipe for Goji Ginger Lemonade that looks incredible & is on my list to try before the next beach date!
Hopefully you’ve found this helpful, do let me know if you have any questions and I’ll do my best to answer them or have a nutritionist do so on my behalf!
Happy beaching! xx