FAST FOOD OPTIONS THAT ARE GOOD FOR YOUR SKIN

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IF YOU REFUSE TO GIVE UP FAST FOOD (OR HAVE TO EAT IT IN A PINCH), AT LEAST PICK THE BEST OPTIONS FOR HEALTHY SKIN!


SMOOTHIE: 16 OZ. JAMBA JUICE PROBIOTIC FRUIT & YOGURT BLENDS -- VIBRANT BLUEBERRY

What's in it: Nonfat yogurt, soymilk, and blueberries 

Why it's a good choice:
The yogurt and nonfat milk give you 10 grams of lean protein, which plays a key role in the repair of our organs, tissues, and cells and is an essential component of collagen. This smoothie also packs in 15 percent of your daily calcium intake, important for strong bones and teeth. The blueberries contribute 50 percent of your vitamin C for the day, help preserve long-term cell damage, and have extremely high levels of antioxidants -- perfect for fighting free radicals from environmental aggressors.

BREAKFAST: CORNER BAKERY OLD-FASHIONED OATMEAL

What's in it: Old-fashioned steel-cut oats made with skim milk and choice of toppings (currants, dried cranberries, brown sugar, toasted walnuts, and almonds)Why it's a good choice:
Oatmeal is a great, B vitamin-rich breakfast, which is essential for healthy skin, says White. The nonfat milk adds a boost of protein and calcium as well. Feel free to add those toasted walnuts on top for their vitamin E and omega-3 fatty acids; these have anti-inflammatory benefits that can help those with puffy, irritated skin. You can also add some of the anti-oxidant filled currants and cranberries (in moderation -- dried fruit is often high in sugar) but go easy on the brown sugar to keep this breakfast skin healthy.

TACOS: BAHA FRESH GRILLED MAHI MAHI FISH TACOS

What's in it: Mahi Mahi, sliced avocado, cabbage, Pico de Gallo, and avocado dressing on corn tortillas
Why it's a good choice:
Mahi Mahi is low in fat, a good source of protein, potassium, and vitamins B6 and B3 (niacin), which help stimulate the repair of DNA and enhance cell turnover, making this fish a "great choice," says White. The avocado is not only rich in vitamins A, C, E and K, but also is a healthy and delicious fat that's good for your hair and skin, says White. Ask for the dressing on the side as it will be the culprit in adding excess sodium to this meal.


SNACK: AU BON PAIN HUMMUS AND CUCUMBER

What's in it: Hummus (chickpeas, roasted red peppers, lemon juice, sesame tahini, canola oil, sea salt, citric acid, natural flavor, spices), cucumber, Kalamata olives

Why it's a good choice:
Beans like chickpeas are an awesome skin nourishing food, says White. They contain manganese to help fight free-radical damage, and a good amount of folate, a B vitamin that repairs cell damage from the sun and toxins. Tread lightly with the Kalamata olives though; despite having some good-for-you fatty acids, they pack a salty punch.

SALAD: PANERA BREAD STRAWBERRY POPPYSEED & CHICKEN SALAD

What's in it: All-natural, antibiotic-free chicken, romaine, fresh strawberries, fresh blueberries, fresh pineapple, Mandarin oranges, pecans, and fat-free poppyseed dressing.

Why it's a good choice:
Chicken is always a good option for lean protein, and along with the romaine and pecans, this salad gives you a whopping 29 grams of the muscle building must. The pecans also contain vitamin E, zinc and magnesium, which are essential ingredients for protecting skin cells from oxidative damage, says White. Lastly, all the fresh fruit is equivalent to a day's worth of your recommended dose of vitamin C (160 percent), helping to fight aging by ridding your body of harmful chemicals.

PASTA: NOODLES & COMPANY PASTA FRESCA

What's in it: Whole grain linguini with balsamic, olive oil, white wine, roasted garlic, red onion, tomato, spinach, and parmesan or feta

Why it's a good choice:
A whole grain pasta is always going to be a better option than refined carbs, like regular pasta, which are known to aggravate acne. Whole grains are low on the glycemic scale and won't spike your blood sugar and cause breakouts. The tomatoes in this dish are the other star component to good skin, says White. They are chockfull of lycopene, a powerful anti-aging antioxidant.

SANDWICH: SUBWAY HONEY OAT VEGGIE DELITE WITH AVOCADO

What's in it: Fresh lettuce, tomatoes, green bell peppers, onions, cucumbers, avocado, and your choice of fat-free condiments on freshly baked bread

Why it's a good choice:
 You basically get to see everything that goes into your sub. Ask for extra veggies, which pack skin-enhancing protein, vitamins, and minerals. The vitamin E-rich avocado, combined with vitamin C from tomatoes, can actually help protect skin against UV damage. Choose an oil-based dressing opposed to a creamy one, says White, to keep out sugar and salt.

BURGER: MCDONALDS BIG-N'-TASTY

What's in it: Beef patty, tomato, lettuce, pickles, slivered onions, ketchup and mayonnaise dressing on a sesame seed bun

Why it's a good choice:
OK, so if you absolutely have to have a burger, this one is the best choice compared to the other fast food burgers as it is lower on the sodium level, has no cheese, and actually has a tomato on it. If you really cared about your skin, you would "go naked" with it, says White. That means skipping the bun (which adds 110mg of salt and 5 grams of sugar), mayonnaise dressing, and high fructose corn syrup-infused ketchup. But, that might not sound too appetizing, as the sauces and bun tend to mask the taste of the meat.

INGREDIENTS TO LOOK FOR -- AND ONES TO SKIP

If you're at a different fast food joint and can't find one of the options here, you can make tiny adjustments to what you order that can make a big difference in the overall nutrient intake of your meal. White says when you can, choose meal options with these skin-healthy ingredients:

• Fish (not deep fried … we're lookin' at you "Filet-O-Fish")
• Nuts (especially almonds and walnuts)
• Vegetables (always sub spinach for iceberg lettuce when possible, and ask for extra cucumbers, bell peppers, and raw onions)
• Fruits (especially strawberries, tomatoes, blueberries, avocados, and tomatoes)

When it comes to your drink of choice, choose water. All sodas and diet drinks are packed with sodium (a healthy skin no-no). Remember, you'll still get your fair share of sodium even if you order the healthiest options on the menu. White also says you can choose unsweetened green tea (now available at some fast food joints, like Subway), which is filled with polyphenols and anti-oxidants that help combat skin cell damage and the signs of aging.