For the most part, looking good isn’t rocket science. Sleep well, watch your weight, and hit the gym a few times a week. But to truly look your 10-out-of-10 best, you’ll want to turn to some science-backed foods that aren’t just good for your waistline but are also great for your skin, your hair, and your muscles. To learn how to eat your way to better looks, read on. And for more great advice on looking your absolute best, 24/7/365, learn these 15 Genius Tricks for Appearing More Attractive.
Caffeinate for Smooth Skin
Drinking coffee doesn’t just wake you up, it also invigorates your skin and protects it from harmful UV rays. According to a study in the journal Cancer Research, caffeine sloughs off the skin cells that become damaged by the sun.
“Drinking three to five cups of coffee a day may protect skin from UV damage,” says study author Allan H. Conney, PhD. Java give you the jitters? Topical application of a salve that contains caffeine will also work. Try Zirh’s starter kit of skin-saving serums ($59). And for more ways to score angelic skin, check out the 30 Best Ways to Have Your Best Skin.
Spice Up Your Hair
Hot peppers can stimulate hair growth. That’s the message from a study in the journal Growth Hormone and IGF Research. Researchers found that capsaicin, the compound that gives peppers their heat, promotes hair growth by stimulating growth factors in the hair follicles. When they gave people 6 milligrams of capsaicin a day (the equivalent of a few shakes of chili flakes), 65 percent saw significant hair growth after five months.
Eating tomatoes will keep you looking younger. Researchers at England’s University of Manchester had volunteers consume about 4 tablespoons (55 grams) of tomato paste and 10 grams of olive oil a day, while another 10 consumed just olive oil. After three months, the tomato group’s skin had higher levels of procollagen, a compound that helps keep skin firm and elastic.
“Lycopene, an antioxidant found in tomatoes, protects the skin from oxidative stress and DNA damage, which might help reverse the skin’s aging process,” says study author Lesley Rhodes, MD.
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