By Brierley Wright, M.S., R.D., March/April 2008
Searching for a way to look young for your age? Hit the produce aisle, suggests new research in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. Analyzing data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey I (NHANES I)—a survey that asks people to quantify how often they eat various foods—researchers from Unilever linked consuming plenty of vitamin C-rich foods (such as oranges, tomatoes and strawberries) with youthful skin. “Our findings suggest that a higher intake of vitamin C from foods is associated with a lower risk of having wrinkled skin and age-related skin dryness in [middle-aged] women,” says Maeve Cosgrove, Ph.D., who led the research.
Vitamin C’s youthful effects on skin may be due to its antioxidant properties, which help protect against ultraviolet rays, and its role in keeping skin firm via collagen synthesis, say the researchers.
Bottom line: Eating more vitamin-C rich foods, such as oranges, tomatoes, strawberries and broccoli, may be a secret to smoother skin.