Today’s post is part 6 in my series of recipes based on a recent HealthGrove study identifying the top 30 foods for beautiful skin and hair. As I have previously discussed, all but 3 of the most beautifying foods are #WHOLE30 foods. The 3 exceptions on the list (those foods not technically Paleo or WHOLE30-compliant) are legumes (i.e. beans), not dairy or grains. In case you missed any of the previous recipes from this series, you will find links for each at the bottom of this post. So, be sure to check those out, and definitely stay tuned to Daily Beauty Wisdom because I’ll be posting all new recipes for each of the remaining #Paleo / #WHOLE30 ingredients from the HealthGrove list (I think I’ve got about 20 or 21 left to cover). And be sure to subscribe to Daily Beauty Wisdom to automatically receive new posts sent directly to your inbox of choice!
Today’s beautifying ingredient is the sweet and juicy, bright red succulent strawberry (food #17 from the HealthGrove list). Here’s a little bit of trivia. Did you know strawberries are the only fruit with seeds on the outside? Strawberries are low calorie, high in fiber and a terrific source of Vitamin C (necessary in the synthesis of collagen, the key component of healthy skin and hair), providing more than 100% of RDA per serving. Vitamin C is one of several antioxidant vitamins.
You may be wondering why antioxidants are important. Antioxidants protect the skin (and other cells) from oxidation which occurs when our bodies are exposed to free radicals like the sun’s rays, smog, second-hand smoke and other environmental toxins. Oxidation is akin to rusting of the body, and it’s the primary way the body shows its age. Anti-oxidants are the antidote to oxidation, like tiny molecular-level shields protecting against rust and decay inside the body. (when we eat foods high in antioxidants like strawberries) or when applied topically (when using cosmetics that have added antioxidants ingredients). The the science is mixed with respect to usage of antioxidants in preventing disease. But antioxidants are generally accepted as anti-aging superstars. Most experts recommend getting our antioxidants from foods (versus supplements) and suggest the best way to combat aging is to eat foods high in antioxidants and other skin-beneficial ingredients (like biotin and good fats); to get lots of sleep (sleep is when the body repairs itself from damage it sustained during the day); and to use products with antioxidants and other skin-beneficial ingredients (source here).
I whipped up this recipe on Father’s Day to serve to Hubs. Since this was his first official Father’s Day I had quite the special Daddy Dinner menu in the works, including among other things these paleo pancakes (remember we’re not currently doing a #WHOLE30) with homemade strawberry syrup (I used the remaining thawed strawberries, some unsweetened OJ and coconut sugar simmered on LOW for 2 hours); scrambled eggs and bacon; tossed salads and this vinaigrette.
Because I took a couple of preparatory measures in advance (soaking the dates in the fridge overnight and pre-measuring lemon juice + other ingredients in advance), this recipe was quite literally ready in seconds. I timed it. It took around 47 seconds, literally less than 1 minute to prepare. If using frozen strawberries (which I think is the way to go as long you are careful to purchase UNSWEETENED, AKA no sugar added berries), just remove the bag from the freezer (and place in the refrigerator) the night before you plan to make this dressing. I actually soaked the dates in the fridge overnight too, just to save a little prep time on Sunday. BTW, I used defrosted frozen strawberries in this recipe only because I had them on hand (and I’m a big believer in using what ya’ got). But It’s summertime in North America, at least. So if you can get your hands on some fresh (preferably local) strawberries, I highly recommend using those in this recipe.
Split-Second Strawberry Vinaigrette – Sweet & Simple & #WHOLE30 Compliant
• 1 cup whole fresh or frozen unsweetened strawberries, defrosted and drained (if using frozen)
• 4 whole pitted dates, soaked at least 4 hours, drained (see note below)+++
• 1 tsp. iodized sea salt
• 10 cranks freshly cracked black pepper
• 1 cloves garlic, minced
• 1 tsp. spicy mustard (if doing #WHOLE30 be sure mustard contains no white wine)+++
• ¼ cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (juice from 1 small lemon)
• 1 cup avocado oil or extra virgin olive oil
• ¼ tsp. cayenne pepper (optional)
• powerful blender (I used a NutriBullet Pro), but a Vitamix or other sturdy, powerful blender would work equally well
1. Drain dates and disgard soaking liquid.
2. Add dates, strawberries and all other ingredients to pitcher or jar of blender.
3. Place blender pitcher on base, cover and blend on HIGH until no chunks or pieces of the fruit or garlic remain. It should take no more than a minute.
4. Remove blender from base and remove lid. Test dressing for seasoning and adjust as needed to taste. Then refrigerate until ready to use.
~Makes about 2 cups vinaigrette.
This dressing will keep covered and refrigerated about 1 week.
+++When doing #WHOLE30, it’s very important to check the ingredient lists of any foods you plan to eat (actually it’s always important to be aware of what you’re feeding your family, right?). Some frozen fruits contain sugar or other additives not approved for consumption during WHOLE30 (and which aren’t healthy for us to consume anyway). Sugar and sweeteners of all kinds are off limits during #WHOLE30. And, dijon mustard usually contains white wine which is also not permitted during #WHOLE30. Finally, some dried fruits are processed with sulfites which are not permitted for consumption during #WHOLE30, so carefully check the dates you use for this any other recipe. For a complete list of #WHOLE30 program do’s and don’ts as well as answers to just about any #WHOLE30 questions you may have, I highly recommend you check out the program rules here and other resources available at WHOLE30’s website to educate yourself prior to beginning your own #WHOLE30 journey or whenever you have questions or need some support (N.B. – the Facebook and Twitter feeds are tremendous sources of encouragement and support). Also, consider reading the book It Starts with Food prior to attempting a #WHOLE30. It’s chalked full of useful info and helpful tips to make surviving the whole 30 days a whole lot more tolerable (pun intended).
Don’t Miss the Other Recipes in This Series:
Fix-It-And-Forget-It: Simply Beautiful Southern Greens Crockpot #WHOLE30 Compliant
Quick & Easy Paleo Lemon Garlic Salad Dressing #WHOLE30 Compliant
Chicken Tri-Almandine Casserole
WHOLE30 Stuffed Zucchini 2 Ways
Easy Cheezy Chicken & Broccoli Soup with Crispy Potato Croutons
Wisdom for the Day:
Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife even as Christ is the head of the church, his body, and is himself its Savior. Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit in everything to their husbands. Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her.. ~Ephesians 5:22-25 (English Standard Version)
Read more here.
Beauty Resource of the Day:
Here’s another helpful makeup tutorial video from the brilliant Wayne Goss. This little tip will help you avoid making mistakes when applying your eyeshadow: