6 must-have beauty secrets from around the world

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Courtesy of MSNBC:

By Cynthia Pasquella

TODAY.com contributor
    updated     2/22/2012 7:42:37 PM ET2012-02-23T00:42:37

From Brazil to India, it turns out the fountain of youth is often found in the kitchen. Here are some of celebrity nutritionist Cynthia Pasquella’s favorite beauty secrets from around the world.

Secret No. 1: Coconut oil Coconuts were first introduced to Bahia, Brazil in 1553; from there, they spread throughout South America. Coconut oil is super moisturizing and can be used as a deep cleanser for skin pores as it contains natural antibacterial ingredients to help clear up acne. Women in Belize have long used it to ease fine lines and wrinkles and to soften dry skin. Coconut oil also acts as a natural sunscreen, protecting skin even further. Ingesting this amazing food improves circulation in the skin, restores elasticity and can even banish under-eye circles.

You can pick up unrefined, organic coconut oil from almost any grocery store. Dr. Bronner’s Fresh-Pressed Virgin Coconut Oil can be purchased online for $10.99.

Secret No. 2: Noni juice The Polynesians use noni juice for its powerful anti-aging properties that help you feel younger and make your skin glow. Noni juice also can help lower inflammation throughout your body.

You can find Lakewood Organic Noni Juice at stores and online for $9.29.

The Look: The 9 best-rated face scrubs

Secret No. 3: Ginger Throughout India women of all ages take a few moments each morning to lovingly shred a little ginger and mix it with a spoonful of honey. After adding water, they savor the sweetness of the honey combined with the gentle warmth of the fresh ginger. These two simple ingredients are believed to reduce lines in the skin.

You can buy whole ginger roots at most grocery stores.

Secret No. 4:  Guanábana (Soursop) The Guanábana fruit, native to the Caribbean and South America, is known for its rich, aromatic flavor and nourishing benefits. Guanábana contains a healthful blend of nutrients, intended to help promote more beautiful skin. It’s rich in vitamins B and C, which help boost immunity and nourish the skin.

If you’d like to give guanábana a try, you can buy Borba Slimming Chocolate Chews for $19.99 or Borba Smart and Sexy Omega-3 Bursts for $14.99.

Secret No. 5: Black cumin seeds Native to south and southwest Asia, black cumin seeds are a powerful antioxidant. They’re beneficial for strengthening hair and nails and treating skin conditions like psoriasis, acne and eczema. The seeds contain a rich variety of vitamins including A, B1, B2, B6, C and Niacin, as well as an array of minerals including calcium, potassium, iron, magnesium, selenium, copper, phosphorus and zinc.

Intelligent Nutrients’ Intellimune Tablets contain black cumin seed meal and cost $45.

Secret No. 6: Grape-seed extract Regularly used by French women to keep their skin beautiful and ageless, grape-seed extract contains powerful antioxidants. Wine and grape-seed oil cannot compare in antioxidant potency to grape-seed extract. For example, you would need to eat 1 to 1.5 pounds of seeded table grapes to receive the antioxidant benefits you would get from 50 mg of grape-seed extract.

Murad’s Youth Builder Dietary Supplement contains grape-seed extract and costs $49.50 for a 30-day supply.



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