Eating Carotenoid-Rich Produce May Make Facial Color More Alluring, Scientists Say

Eating carrots, plums and other carotenoid-heavy produce could indicate to others that an individual is healthy, experts found.Psychologists at St. Andrews and Bristol Universities have found that eating foods that contain high levels of carotenoids may increase an individual’s perceived attractiveness.

In a study published in the journal Evolution and Human Behavior, the team announced that the compound group – which is composed of natural pigments found in fruits and vegetables – may add a yellowish pigment to the face, which participants in the research found attractive.

The team showed volunteers photos of dozens of men, each of whose facial pigmentation appeared both naturally and modified.

Participants tended to rate those individuals who had a yellow tinge to their facial coloration as more attractive than those who did not.

The team theorized that this shading, which may be increased by eating carrots, plums and other carotenoid-heavy produce, could indicate to others that an individual is healthy.

Consuming red, orange and yellow fruits and vegetables may also provide better protection from sun damage, which the team said may also contribute to a person’s perceived attractiveness.

Previous studies have also suggested that the carotenoids in tomatoes may decrease the risk of cancer in those who consume them regularly.