Fresh corn off the cob and ripe cherry tomatoes off the vine add another level of freshness to this summer salad fiesta bowl. Toss into a bowl of spicy arugula and you’ve got a summer salad that will certainly not disappoint! I’ve been making summer salads on repeat since I’ve made it back to Charleston. I love taking seasonal produce and seeing what flavors complement each other, sometimes in surprising ways. I will tell you that as a California girl through and through, I believe there is nothing quite like southern summer heat. Sky high temps and humidity off the charts make salads and hydrating produce dietary go-tos!
Eat your sunscreen
On the topic of sun, let’s talk “eating your sunscreen”. I am, and always have been a huge proponent of sunscreen. Living in sunny climates my whole life, I learned early on about the importance of preserving your skin from harmful UV rays. As a nutritionist, I know that certain foods boast nutrients that have mild sun-protective qualities. Enter: my beloved tomatoes.
Tomatoes boast lycopene, a carotenoid antioxidant that has been shown to enhance anti-aging sun defenses, helping to block harmful UV rays from potentially causing premature wrinkles, age spots and lines. It is also linked to higher pro-collagen which aids skin structure and elasticity. In other words, you can “eat” some of your sunscreen! I wouldn’t recommend this in place of traditional sunscreen, but it is certainly a food with a tangible benefit.
Lycopene is found mostly in red-colored fruits and vegetables. Aim to eat a variety of these on a regular basis to reap these benefits. Tomato, guava, watermelon and papaya are four fruits that boast this powerful antioxidant.