08/03/2012 07:12 GMT | Updated 08/05/2012 06:12 BST

Fruit And Vegetables Give Skin A Healthy Glow

As well as keeping you healthy, eating your five-a-day will will give your skin a golden glow and make you appear more attractive too, according to a new study.

Researchers at the University of St Andrews found that eating two more portions of fruit and vegetables a day for just six weeks made a visible difference to the skin's natural hue.

The study, published in PLoS One journal, monitored the fruit and vegetable intake of 35 participants over a six-week period.

Using an instrument to analyse their skin tone before and after the test period, the researchers found that increased fruit and vegetable consumption led to a deepening of natural red and yellow skin colouration.

Earlier research by the team had found even subtle changes in these skin tones led to a greater perceived attractiveness of the faces.

Giving credence to the old wives' tale that eating too many carrots will turn you orange, previous research has found that carotenoids, the red and yellow pigments found in brightly coloured fruit and vegetables, can have an effect on the colour of the skin.

Dr Glenys Jones, from the Medical Research Council Human Nutrition Research laboratory at Cambridge University told the BBC: "With the vast majority of the population not consuming the recommended 5-a-day of fruits and vegetables, this could be another way of encouraging people through our own innate vanity to increase fruit and vegetable intake.

"After all fruits and vegetables contain a wide range of nutrients that are good for not just for our complexion, but for our overall health."

Today it emerged that three-year-old boy Leo Barnett has a rare condition that exacerbates this reaction, causing his skin to take on an orange hue when he eats carotene-rich foods, due to an inability to digest the substance.

A previous study found that a daily fruit and vegetable concentrate can dramatically improve the condition of the skin.

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