Doctors know that the look of your skin reflects the state of your overall health. If your skin is healthier, it works better and helps your body as a whole stay healthier too. If you're healthy on the inside, your skin will be healthier looking as well.
Fruits and veggies are naturally full of good for you plant compounds that help keep skin healthy, strong and offer protection for the damage that can come from the sun.
For the study, the team examined the fruits and vegetable eating of 35 subjects for six weeks. They saw that the red and yellow tones in the skin went up with just two added servings of fruits and veggies likely because of the carotenoids (red/yellow pigments) in these foods being distributed to the surface of the skin.
The carotenoids examined in the study were beta-carotene and lycopene, well known and rather potent disease fighters. Good sources of beta-carotene are carrots, yams, spinach, pumpkins, peaches and apricots. Lycopene is in apricots as well as watermelon, tomatoes and pink grapefruit.
Based on the study findings, about three servings of fruits and veggies a day over a 6 week time frame is enough to bring noticeable improvements in the healthy and attractive look of the skin. That golden glow that people notice. Interesting that those who did not eat enough fruits and veggies looked paler, less healthy.
The researchers were not only surprised that even small improvements in fruit and vegetable intake brought visible benefits to the skin, the results came more quickly than anyone expected.
It would seem that the expression "You are what you eat" holds more than a grain of truth. There have been other studies that show a diet full of high antioxidant foods (nuts, olive oil, less red meat and dairy, increased fruits and veggies) helps the skin resist aging and may protect against dangerous, disfiguring skin cancer. Experts believe that only 25% to 30% of Americans get the recommended amount of fruits and veggies each day, though efforts to increase this consumption haven't been all that successful.