The secret to a rosy, healthy-looking complexion may be as simple as eating more fruits and vegetables.
Researchers conducted a small study on the link between the foods we eat and skin complexion by following 35 individuals over a six-week period. They noted that a fluctuation in the amount of fruits and vegetables eaten was associated with changes in skin tone. Redness and yellowness increased as more fruits and vegetables were consumed, changes attributable to the beta-carotene and lycopene contained in coloured plants. In a second experiment, fruit and vegetable lovers were deemed to have a more attractive skin tone. Conversely, people who ate less fruits and vegetables had paler, less attractive skin.
Eating more fruits and vegetables could therefore not only contribute to overall health, it could also promote a healthier appearance. Other studies have also shown that a diet rich in antioxidants – i.e. high in olives, nuts, fruits and vegetables, but low in dairy products and red meat – could help skin resist age-related changes.
Your skin reflects your overall health. We also know that a diet high in fruits and vegetables is associated with a lower risk of developing various cancers and can help maintain a healthy weight. Colourful fruits and vegetables such as carrots, spinach, peppers, peaches, different kinds of squash, apricots, watermelon, tomatoes and pink grapefruit contain high levels of coloured pigments that could help give you a healthy complexion. However, it is estimated that less than half of all Canadians eat the minimum daily recommended amount of fruits and vegetables. Getting a healthy glow is yet another good motivation for adding colour to your plate!