Protect against free radicals, moisturize, and heal
What brazil nuts do: Brazil nuts may help protect the skin from the ageing effects of the sun's ultraviolet rays as well as from cigarette smoke in both active and passive smokers. They can also play a role in keeping the very top layers of skin watertight and the lower layers moist and hydrated to help reduce dryness. Brazil nuts may also be Involved In reducing the problem of blemishes by promoting rapid healing.
Why brazil nuts work: The selenium found in Brazil nuts is crucial for the production of the antioxidant glutathione peroxidase, which helps protect the skin from free-radical damage in the first twenty minutes of sun exposure. Combined with the vitamin E in Brazil nuts, selenium also helps neutralize free radicals in Cigarette smoke, which trigger the release of collagen-attacking, skin-ageing MMP-1 enzymes. By zapping free radicals, glutathione peroxidase and vitamin E also help protect the skin's oil and essential fats that keep it watertight and hydrated, while vitamin E promotes skin healing.
Brazil nut serving ideas: Chop and add to breakfast cereals such as muesli or porridge. When grated, Brazils can be mixed with cottage cheese and chopped peaches, or sprinkled over salads. Serve them whole with fruit and cheese. If blanched, chopped or grated, Brazils work with bread mixes, nut burgers, and rissoles.
Brazil nut watch points: The selenium content of Brazil nuts can range from 230 to 5,300 micrograms per 100g (3 ½ oz). While it is essential to health, too much selenium is harmful, and intakes above 750 micrograms a day are inadvisable People with nut allergies should, of course, avoid Brazil nuts.