While grocers often tout the benefits of produce in conjunction with a healthy lifestyle and weight loss, they also can promote this category’s contribution to beauty.
Vitamins A, E, and C abound in the produce department, and all three have been lauded for helping to create a glowing complexion. Apricots, cantaloupe and carrots are an excellent source of vitamin A. Vitamin E has been acclaimed for slowing the aging process. Of course, you only need to look as far as dark, leafy vegetables and avocados to find this vitamin. And everything from citrus fruits to red peppers to broccoli to strawberries provides vitamin C, which is said to keep skin beautiful in addition to its other healthful properties.
Don’t forget the antioxidants that are said to protect and repair skin. Lycopene, in particular, is considered a potent antioxidant. This can be found in tomatoes, watermelon, pink grapefruit, papaya and blood oranges. Blueberries, cranberries, blackberries, raspberries and strawberries are loaded with antioxidants, too.
The National Institute on Aging  in the U.S. rates the antioxidant goodness of fresh fruits and vegetables in units called oxygen radical absorbance capacity (ORAC). In addition to the produce previously mentioned, bananas and spinach have high ORAC scores.
With all of the emphasis on the need to incorporate antioxidant-rich foods into one’s diet, it’s not surprising that some health advisors have even suggested consuming eight to 10 portions a day.
Fresh mushrooms, which contain zinc, and beans, dried figs and cooked spinach, which contain iron, are reported to help develop luxurious locks as these two vitamins are supposed to fight thinning hair.
We’ve all heard that you are what you eat. So, why not incorporate into consumer educational materials the important role fresh fruits and vegetables can play in one’s daily beauty regimen? Or, have your nutritionist write an occasional column that describes how eating fresh produce could do more than help achieve weight loss or a healthier lifestyle.
Statistics demonstrate that Baby Boomers are willing to pay for beauty products and procedures to restore their youthful looks. And while the produce aisle may not hold the fountain of youth, the cost of fresh fruits and vegetables is a small price to pay to attain their many natural attributes.
[Photo credit: WriterGal39 ]