Want a nice tan but don’t feel like sitting in a tanning booth or getting sand between your toes? There might be an option for you. It turns out that your diet has a big impact on how tan you are. So if you want to tan naturally without exposing yourself to the sun or using weird products, this is about as close as you’re going to get.
Lots of fruits and vegetables can help your skin tone. Foods that have a lot of carotenoids (lypocene, beta-carotene and alpha-carotene) give your skin a different hue. Carotenoids are most dense in orange and red fruits and vegetables, like watermelon, sweet potatoes, carrots, tomatoes, apricots, papaya, canteloupe and grapefruit.
Because carotenoids are fat-soluble, the body stores them in the layer of fat right under your skin. If you have light skin, the color can show through. You don’t look like you’re full of tomato soup, you look like you’re glowing.
A study in PLOS One shows that caucasian participants who ate three servings of beta-carotene and lypocene-containing fruits and vegetables every day for six weeks developed a yellower, “rosier” skin tone.
We associate yellow skin tone with health. People with yellower skin tones are generally rated as more attractive than others.
Don’t overdo the carotenoids, because there’s an off-chance that you can develop a condition called carotenosis. It’s very rare, and you’re probably not at risk for it unless you’re a little kid or you’re a vegetarian.
Eat two or three servings of carotenoid-rich foods every day and you may see a definite change in your skin tone. It’s not exactly a replacement for tanning but it’s definitely an easy way to improve your looks safely. It’s probably a better idea to tan naturally like this than to cook yourself in a tanning bed.