Vitamin D is essential for overall health, helping the body to absorb calcium and phosphorus from our diet, which is crucial for our teeth and bones. As we all know most of our Vitamin D comes from sunlight exposure; so whilst the temperatures are rising, many of us rush outside to make the most of the British Summer and soak up some much needed vitamin D.

Here at Mindful Chef we encourage people to spend time outdoors, however, it’s important to ensure that we do not neglect our body's largest organ – the skin! We’ve put together 5 easy tips to ensure you prepare your skin for summer, so that you can achieve the summer glow without doing yourself any harm.

  • Protect: This goes without saying. The suns UV rays are essential for Vitamin D production but overexposure is also very dangerous, leading to sunburn and increasing our risk of skin cancer, which is one of the most common forms of cancer in the UK. Part of this problem is that UV strength is not linked to temperature, which can be misleading in the cooler British summers causing people to believe they do not need sun cream! Make sure you apply a high factor sun cream whenever you are spending time out in the sun and be sure to keep an eye on your skin for any mild symptoms should they arise.

  • Hydrate: Staying fully hydrated is vital for overall health and optimum bodily function, plus will give your skin a radiant glow. It is commonly recommended to drink 2 litres of water a day not accounting for exercise. If you struggle to drink enough water, why not try our 5 recipes to spruce up your water.

  • Moisturise: No-one wants dry flaky skin during the summer months, which is why we believe people should take time to moisturise. Certain moisturisers include SPF, so you could opt for a high SPF moisturiser as opposed to suncream for daily use when you do not intend to spend much time outside. We typically love using organic products, but coconut oil comes out top for it’s natural nourishing effects.

  • Brush: Invest in a dry body brush. Brushing promotes lymph circulation, helping to breakdown toxins. As well as removing dead skin cells, brushing will re-energise and brighten your skin by increasing the supply of oxygen to your cells. We recommend brushing your entire body from feet upwards in long strokes towards the heart for around 10 minutes. Starting or even ending your day by brushing your skin, is a great time to practice mindfulness. To save time, try using exfoliating gloves whilst in the shower.

  • Nourish: We advocate eating real, whole foods and avoiding pro-inflammatory foods such as refined sugars. Instead pack your diet with nutrient dense vegetables, healthy fats and high quality protein sources, to look and feel great this summer. Certain foods are particularly good, including fish like salmon, which is packed full of Omega 3 fatty acids, an important nutrient for protecting skin from sun damage. Check out our Salmon and Seaweed recipe shown in the photo below. Antioxidant-loaded foods, such as berries and leafy greens are also essential for skin health. Plus carotenoid found in many plants can activate melanin, a protective pigment in skin, which can prevent UV radiation from damaging DNA. Carotenoid is especially high in tomatoes, carrots and sweet potatoes to name a few. As an added bonus, many of these foods are high in vitamins A, C and E, which all contribute to healthy skin.

Here at Mindful Chef our recipes boxes are packed full of nutrient dense vegetables, healthy fats and high quality protein sources. We deliver all the pre-portioned ingredients to cook healthy, delicious dinners in under 30 minutes. Don't waste your summer planning and shopping for food when we can do the hard work.