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Video: Beauty secrets from around the world

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    >>> morning on today's beauty, secrets to looking younger from all around the world, from brazil to india. it turns out the fountain of youth is often found in the kitchen. here to explain is celebrity nutritionist cynthia pasquela. good morning. nice to have you here. this is an interesting list. and all of these things, are supposed to help us at least according to old wives' tales, defy age.

    >> exactly and who doesn't want to do that, ann, right?

    >> we all want some of that. and we can start with something as simple as coconut oil . it helps improve elasticity in the skin and get rid of the dark, undereye circles that we sometimes have.

    >> boys have them, too. you can buy it in jars now. and it does moisturize, especially in the winter.

    >> it's great for moisturizing, you can eat this, you can have three to four teaspoons a day and it has an anti-bacterial agent in it to help with acne.

    >> and you can cook with it, that's great. now something called noni juice , where does it come from?

    >> noni juice , this is a favorite of brazil. this is polynesian women, they love their noni juice . an amazing anti-aging element to help turn back the hands of time.

    >> i don't know what a noni is. but there you have a picture of it.

    >> let's try some, shall we? hmm.

    >> not bad, right? this is great for --

    >> it's like a prune juice with a little less sweetness. it doesn't taste great, it doesn't taste terrible. haas it supposed to do?

    >> it's great because it's packed with essential fatty acids. i think that's really amazing. just to help plump up the skin and newurture from the inside.

    >> ginger is embraced by a lot of asian countries .

    >> and also in india. women there wake up, shred a little ginger and heat up water and drink this amazing tea. ginger helps to bring the blood flow to the skin to even out your skin tone . isn't that amazing?

    >> have there been studies to prove that? i know people say this, but do we know this for a fact?

    >> we know this for a fact.

    >> what about this?

    >> there is a fruit called guananaba, a delicious little fruit, amazing for anti-aging. it's difficult to find, so we can pick up some of these beauty supplements, these are from borba, they have the slimming chocolate cubes and amazing product called smart and sexy omega 3. it tastes like a tootsie roll and it has fiber in it to curb your cravings.

    >> it's called guanabana?

    >> yes. from the caribbean.

    >> now black cumin seeds, for your hair?

    >> the thing about hair, lot of great anti-oxidants, you can cook with them. you can buy the oil, and you can find them in tablets. this is made by intelligent nutrients, a product called intellimune. eating four of these little tablets is equal to eating ten pounds of berries for anti-oxida anti-oxidants?

    >> yes. your hair is beautiful.

    >> i munch on these all the time.

    >> a great advertisement for that.

    >> now grape seed extract that women in france use?

    >> the french women love this really powerful anti-oxidants to help turn back the hands of time. interesting fact, some people say can't i just eat some grapes?

    >> you can. but you know you would have to eat a pound to a pound and a half of these grapes to get just 50 milligrams or to get the same amount of grape seed extract . that's like this tiny tiny little bit.

    >> so bottom line , you're saying if we sort of take care of ourselves and think about maybe different options we can stay young without going the other route that so many other women sort of feel pressured to go in terms of surgery and everything, we can stay young, defy age by being healthy.

    >> exactly. i mean the outside is always just a direct reflection of what's going on inside. so if wur nourishing our body on the inside, it's going to show.

    >> do you think drinking a lot of water helps as well?

    >> absolutely. flushing out the toxins, flushing the skin, pumping it up. there's nothing for our skin to show fine lines and wrinkles, we don't want that.

    >> no, we don't want that. cynthia, great advice from you.

    >>> coming up, we'll meet the oscar nominee with an entire country rooting for her. but first, this is "today" on

By
TODAY contributor
updated 2/22/2012 7:42:37 PM ET 2012-02-23T00:42:37

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.

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

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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.

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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.

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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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Photos: Kooky fashion on the runway

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  1. Bold fashion on the runway

    Designers at New York Fashion Week Fall 2012 sent down an array of unique, odd, and downright bizarre styles.

    Crystal blue persuasion
    A model presents a crystal-studded creation at the The Blonds Fall 2012 collection on Feb. 15. (Eduardo Munoz / Reuters) Back to slideshow navigation
  2. Helmet hair

    A model shows off a sparkly creation at the The Blonds Fall 2012 fashion show on Feb. 15. (Fernanda Calfat / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  3. Hit or myth?

    The Jeremy Scott Fall 2012 fashion show on Feb. 15 showed some love for beloved mythical creatures. (Slaven Vlasic / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  4. Meltdown

    A groovy creation is presenetd at the Jeremy Scott Fall 2012 fashion show on Feb. 15. (Slaven Vlasic / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  5. Rainbow bright

    Did Cousin Itt finally embrace color? A model walks the runway at the Jeremy Scott Fall 2012 fashion show on Feb. 15. (Slaven Vlasic / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  6. Eat my shorts!

    "The Simpsons" are immortalized in the Jeremy Scott Fall 2012 fashion show on Feb. 15. (Slaven Vlasic / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  7. Give it a swirl

    A swirly dress is presented at the threeASFOUR Fall 2012 fashion show on Feb. 15. (Chelsea Lauren / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  8. Wholehearted

    Designers at New York Fashion Week Fall 2012 sent down an array of unique, odd, and downright bizarre styles.

    Left: A model displays a less than subtle style at the Indashio Fall 2012 fashion show on Feb. 14. (Arun Nevader / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  9. Short shrift

    A suit got sawed off at the Vera Wang Fall 2012 collection on Feb. 14. (Richard Drew / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  10. See-through view

    The Vera Wang Fall 2012 collection is modeled during Fashion Week on Feb. 14. (Richard Drew / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  11. Sized up

    Move over, Olsen twins: A model shows off a shabby chic ensemble at the Marc Jacobs Fall 2012 fashion show on Feb. 13. (Victor Virgile / Getty Images Contributor) Back to slideshow navigation
  12. You're a good man, Charlie Brown

    The beloved "Peanuts" character always has a place in the fashion world, or more specifically, in the Michael Bastian Fall 2012 presentation on Feb. 13. (Cindy Ord / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  13. Clocking in

    It only looks like it works. A model holds a timely accessory at the Diane Von Furstenberg Fall 2012 fashion show on Feb. 12. (Victor Virgile / Getty Images Contributor) Back to slideshow navigation
  14. Play dead

    The Thom Browne Fall 2012 collection on Feb. 13 featured models who "died for fashion," complete with toy coffins. Uplifting! (Andrew Burton / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  15. How to train your dragon?

    Wearing shrouds, the "dead" models at Thom Browne's Fall 2012 conceptual show wore daring ensembles, including a dragon tail-inspired gown. () Back to slideshow navigation
  16. Pouched up

    The Thom Browne Fall 2012 collection featured bold shapes and corpse-inspired makeup. (Andrew Burton / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  17. Stripe the right note

    One model was seeing stripes at the Emilio Cavallini Fall 2012 Presentation on Feb. 13. (Astrid Stawiarz / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  18. Posh pilgrim

    It was a Thanksgiving feast on the Giulietta Fall 2012 fashion show on Feb. 12. (Dario Cantatore / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  19. Shouldering through the crowd

    A model gives new meaning to shoulder pads at the Geoffrey Mac Fall 2012 fashion show on Feb. 12. (Neilson Barnard / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  20. Putting the finger on

    Are those shoes ... flipping the bird? A model gets a rude awakening from her footwear at the Miguel Adrover Fall 2012 fashion show on Feb. 11. (Mike Coppola / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  21. Claws-trophobia

    A cat lady walks the runway at the Miguel Adrover Fall 2012 fashion show on Feb. 11. (Mike Coppola / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  22. Tree's company

    It's a jungle out there on the the Miguel Adrover Fall 2012 fashion show, shown on Feb. 11. (Mike Coppola / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  23. Thigh jinks

    Supermodel Gisele Bundchen overdoses on leather at the Alexander Wang show on Feb. 11. (Charles Sykes / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  24. Net profit

    A model walks the runway at the Alexander Wang Fall 2012 fashion show on Feb. 11. (Peter Michael Dills / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  25. All furs

    Fur gets the bikini treatment at the VPL By Victoria Barlett Fall 2012 fashion show on Feb. 11. (Dario Cantatore / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  26. More arm than good?

    The Jason Wu Fall 2012 collection, shown on Feb. 10, features a furry, fun creation. (Jason Decrow / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
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