These are ingredients to keep your eye out for and the best dishes around town that offer them.
Let’s face it, we all want healthy looking skin. You can spend a fortune on skincare products to give you that clear, smooth, glowing skin that you longed for, but one of the fundamentals for having healthy looking skin is eating well. A number of foods offer nutrients that contribute to healthy skin, but with a busy and hectic lifestyle, making foods from scratch may not always be an option. Fortunately, plenty of eateries in Hong Kong offer wholesome and scrumptious dishes that may help to achieve healthier looking skin…
An essential nutrient that is not only an antioxidant! Vitamin C is responsible for creating collagen, a protein that promotes skin’s firmness and elasticity. Plenty of foods include vitamin C, such as kale, collard greens, sweet bell peppers and citrus fruits. To get a boost of vitamin C while eating out, enjoy a vegetable dish like a leafy green salad or a vegetable stir-fry. Anything with potato skin is a bonus!
- Kale Salad with Pomegranate and Avocado Dressing from Kale
Kale, G/F, 26 Li Yuen Street West, Central, Hong Kong, 2511 1777, www.facebook.com/kalelivenrocks
- Sauteed Deluxe Vege of Pleurotus Mushroom, Velvet Brown Algae, Zucchini and Red Pepper from Loving Hut International Vegan Restaurant
Loving Hut International Vegan Restaurant, Shop G242-245, Amoy Plaza II, 77 Ngau Tau Kok Road, Kowloon Bay, Hong Kong, 2751 1321
Loving Hut International Vegan Restaurant, 2/F, Luen Tai Building, 93-99 Wan Chai Road, Wan Chai, Hong Kong, 2574 3248, www.lovinghut.com
Like vitamin C, vitamin E is an antioxidant that may play a role in anti-ageing by preventing the skin from getting damaged by free radicals. In fact, when both vitamins C and E are present, the former may help to enhance the effectiveness of vitamin E. This fat-soluble vitamin can be found in nuts and seeds such as almonds, sunflower seeds, peanuts, and in fruits like avocados. If you are looking for vitamin E-rich foods while eating out, consider smashed avocado toast for brunch or sweet almond soup as dessert.
- Smashed Avocado from The Winery Kitchen and Bar
The Winery Kitchen and Bar, Shops 8 & 9, Kwan Yick Building Phase 3, 158a Connaught Road West, Sai Ying Pun, Hong Kong, www.thewinery.hk
- Sweet Almond Soup from Yuen Kee Dessert
Yuen Kee Dessert, G/F, 32 Centre Street, Sai Ying Pun, Hong Kong
Speaking of anti-ageing, lycopene is another antioxidant that is said to reduce wrinkles and protect the skin from getting damaged from sunlight exposure. Lycopene is found mainly in tomatoes and tomato-based products such as pasta sauce and ketchup. In fact, cooked tomatoes have more lycopene than raw tomatoes. It may be a bit of a stretch, but we’re holding on to the belief that a bowl of vibrantly coloured, fresh tomato-based pasta could be doing your skin a favour.
- Scialatelli Pasta With Mixed Seafood and Fresh Cherry Tomato from Gia Trattoria Italiana
Gia Trattoria Italiana, 1/F Fleet Arcade, 1 Lung King Street, Fenwick Pier, Wan Chai, Hong Kong, 2511 8081, www.giatrattoriaitaliana.com
- Classic Lasagna from Pici
Pici, various locations across Hong Kong, www.pici.hk
Another essential nutrient for anti-ageing and healthier looking skin is omega-3 fats. Omega-3 fats may help reduce wrinkles by producing natural oils that act as a barrier and keep the skin plumped and hydrated. Omega-3 fats are found abundantly in fatty fish such as salmon, mackerel and herring, but are also present in walnuts and flaxseeds. If you are tired of having sushi and sashimi, grab a salmon poke bowl for a change. If you don’t eat fish, you can opt for a walnut-based dish, like a sweet walnut soup.
- Poke Bowl from Pololi
Pololi, 35-39 Graham Street, Kar Ho Building, Central, Hong Kong, 2755 8099
Pololi, Food Street @ Fashion Walk, Shop C, G/F, 58-64 Paterson Street, Causeway Bay, Hong Kong, 2755 8099, www.pololikai.com
- Sweet Walnut Soup from Yuen Kee Dessert
Yuen Kee Dessert, G/F, 32 Centre Street, Sai Ying Pun, Hong Kong
Keeping your skin hydrated is essential, but having smooth skin and the peachy glow on your cheeks is equally important. Vitamin A, a fat-soluble vitamin that helps to keep your eyes and immune system healthy, also plays a vital role in keeping your skin nourished and radiant. Vitamin A is found in foods like liver meat, eel, bluefin tuna, mackerel, clams, eggs, goat cheese and ricotta cheese, but is also present as a precursor known as beta-carotene, in plant-based foods such as carrot, sweet potato, pumpkin and butternut squash. Instead of eating beta-carotene-rich foods on their own, consider enjoying them in a contemporary dish.
- Carrot Walnut French Toast from Grassroots Pantry
Grassroots Pantry, 108 Hollywood Road, Sheung Wan, Hong Kong, 2873 3353, [email protected], www.grassrootspantry.com
- Carrot and Ginger Soup from Tallore
Tallore, 7-17 Amoy Street, Wan Chai, Hong Kong, 2327 8630, [email protected], www.facebook.com/TalloreSoups
Minor injuries (like a paper cut on your finger) or nuisances (like a spot on your face) create small damages to your skin. Applying a medicated ointment definitely helps the wounds to heal, but including zinc as part of your healthy diet is also crucial. It helps to encourage healthier skin by strengthening the immune system and promoting wound healing. A variety of foods include zinc such as beef, pork, beans and lentils, but the richest source of zinc is found in oysters. If you are planning a happy hour with friends or colleagues after work, consider visiting an oyster bar for a dose of zinc.
- Fresh Oysters from Open Oyster
Open Oyster, G/F, Shop 56, South Seas Centre, 75 Mody Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Hong Kong, 2366 3808, www.facebook.com/OPENOYSTERHKG
- Dal Shorba from Curry Lounge Indian Cuisine
Curry Lounge Indian Cuisine, SeaView Crescent, G/F, Shop S, 8 Tung Chung, Waterfront Road, Tung Chung, Lantau Island, New Territories, Hong Kong, 2960 0911, 2960 1977, [email protected], [email protected], www.currylounge.com.hk
Finally, healthy skin cannot be achieved without protein, a vital nutrient that builds body cells and improves the skin’s elasticity. Protein is found in a wide array of foods, including meats, poultry, fish, seafood, eggs, tofu, beans, nuts and seeds. The choices of protein-rich dishes are endless, but if you want some bang for your buck, consider combining protein-rich foods with foods that offer essential nutrients for healthy skin.
- Chicken and Walnut Salad from Cedele
Cedele, various locations across Hong Kong, 3791 2492, [email protected], www.facebook.com/Cedelehongkong
- Okra, Tofu, Avocado Salad and Lime Somen from Isoya
Isoya Japanese Vegetarian Restaurant, 83wanchai, 9/F, 83 Wan Chai Road, Wan Chai, Hong Kong, 5500 8812
Featured image courtesy of Maarten van den Heuvel via Unsplash, image 1 courtesy of Kale via Instagram, image 2 courtesy of The Winery Kitchen and Bar via Instagram, image 3 courtesy of Marc Mueller via Unsplash, image 4 courtesy of Pololi, image 5 courtesy of Tallore via Facebook, image 6 courtesy of Open Oyster via Facebook, image 7 courtesy of Cedele via Instagram