The first rays of the sun are back and the terraces are filling up for a chance to start tanning. While waiting for the summer holidays, you only have a few hours here and there to get some colour. Even if the desire to do UV is great, it is far from being the solution and moreover it is dangerous for the skin. So how do you do it? By taking care of your plate! Pharma GDD tells you about these foods that have the power to boost your tan.
How do they promote tanning?
Coloured fruit and vegetables are full of vitamin C and especially carotenes, which slightly pigment the skin and illuminate the complexion. Thanks to their richness in carotenoids, which are powerful antioxidants that fight against free radicals, protect against premature ageing and regulate the immune system. Above all, carotenoids and lycopenes stimulate melanin secretion. These are biological pigments responsible for the colouring of the skin.
Which foods are rich in carotenoids?
There are almost 700 different kinds of carotenoids.
These are the ones that will boost your tan:
⇒lycopene is the natural pigment that gives the colour red to plants. It is the most abundant carotenoid in the human body. It is found in tomatoes, watermelon and grapefruit, but in smaller quantities. Some vegetables such as courgette, broccoli or spinach are also rich in lutein, but their colour is masked by chlorophyll.
⇒ Beta-carotene is known to be transformed into vitamin A in the intestine, it gives food its orange colour. It is found in carrots, apricots, sweet potatoes and pumpkins.
⇒ Lutein, this nutrient colours food yellow this time. It can be found in yellow peppers, mangoes and corn.
⇒Astaxanthin is made by several types of algae and plankton. It is this pigment that gives shrimp and salmon their pinkish colour.
Apart from carotenoids, other foods contribute to the beauty of the skin.
⇒ Vitamin E, a powerful antioxidant, is found in avocados, oilseeds (almonds, hazelnuts) and certain oils such as jojoba oil.
⇒ Vitamin C stimulates collagen production. It is found in cherries, guava, citrus fruits, strawberries and kiwi fruit.
⇒ Omega 3, prevents skin dryness. They are present in fatty fish such as sardines or mackerel, in walnuts or olive oil.
⇒ Selenium, this trace element helps to preserve more from cellular ageing. It is found in Brazil nuts, oily fish or certain seafood such as oysters.
How much should I eat?
There is no recommended nutritional intake. The important thing is to vary the colours of fruit and vegetables so that they provide the maximum amount of nutrients. The more ripe and colourful they are, the more concentrated they are and will help you tan. To better assimilate the pigments, you can add vegetable fats to your dishes such as rapeseed or walnut oil.
What am I cooking today?
Vitamin C is an antioxidant that has a poor resistance to heat and light. To optimise intake, prefer raw vegetables, peel them at the last minute and sprinkle them with lemon juice. If they are difficult to digest, prefer short steaming or wok cooking to preserve most of their vitamin C. For seasoning, parsley, basil, chives or mint are excellent sources of vitamin C, flavonoids and carotenoids.
Once a week, eat fatty fish such as tuna, sardines, mackerel and salmon. Rich in vitamin A, omega-3 fatty acids and selenium, they nourish and protect cell membranes. Grilled and seasoned with lemon juice rich in vitamin C, it is the perfect cocktail for the skin!
If these foods will help you prepare your skin, they will prove effective as a complement to sensible exposure to the sun. So be careful not to expose yourself to hot hours and above all protect yourself with a sun cream!