Have you ever considered shopping for skin care products in the produce aisle of the grocery store? It seems that certain fruits like strawberries, pomegranates, and guavas contain specific ingredients that are beneficial for skin care and, specifically, for sunburn. Did we need another reason to love them?
Strawberries are one of the most popular fruits available. And now researchers are isolating some very beneficial ingredients contained in strawberries. One class of powerful compounds found in strawberries is called anthocyanins. A study published in the Journal of Agricultural Food Chemistry reports that when human skin cells were exposed to these strawberry-flavored anthocyanins they experienced less DNA damage from the sun than skin cells that were not exposed.
Researchers at the Hallym University in the Republic of Korea found that ellagic acid which is found in pomegranates retarded the destruction of collagen and prevented wrinkle-causing skin inflammation. These scientists tested the effects of ellagic acid on hairless mice and on human skin cells. Their studies concluded that ellagic acid successfully blocked the matrix metalloproteinase enzymes which are enzymes that destroy the natural collagen in sun-damaged cells.
It’s a well-known fact that antioxidants such as vitamin C help protect your skin before you get in the sun. Vitamin C applied topically also soothes the pain and redness of skin that is already sunburned. Guavas are good for your skin because they contain about five times the antioxidants as an orange. Guavas also contain another skin-protecting ingredient – lycopene.
You might regard tomatoes as a vegetable, but technically they are a fruit. But however they are classified, they are rich in lycopene which provides your skin with vital protection from harmful UV rays emanating from the sun. The British Society for Investigative Dermatology published a study reporting the astounding benefits of eating tomatoes. Study participants who regularly consumed lycopene from tomato-based products over a three-month period were found to be about 33% more protected from the sun than their control group counterparts.
Everybody knows that including a variety of fruits and vegetables is an important part of a healthy lifestyle. But many people don’t realize that your local produce department is also the first step to protecting your skin from sun damage.