14/08/2014 12:46 BST | Updated 20/05/2015 06:12 BST

5 Sun-Fighting Superfoods

New research has found that eating pigment-rich fruits and vegetables can help to build up the skin's natural barrier to harmful rays.

Scientists have discovered that purple berries such as blackcurrants, blueberries and blackberries, as well as fruits like black grapes and figs contain a "Continual Dietary-SPF" which could be used alongside sun cream to protect the skin.

Orange and dark green vegetables such as peppers, squash, kale and spinach are also said to contain this CD-SPF, thanks to their high levels of valuable anti-oxidants that convert free-radical damage in the body.

"The level of protection against UV light can be assessed in a similar way to which sun creams are rated e.g. SPF10 or 20; where the higher the number, the greater the protection against damage from UV rays" says nutritionist Dr Sam Christie.

"By eating foods that protect your skin against UV rays you are effectively achieving sun protection at all times of the day and on all areas on your body."

Dr Christie recommends these foods to "help the skin cope with UV light by suppressing the damaging effects of sunlight, neutralising free radicals and reducing inflammation (redness)," but that doesn't mean we can skimp on the sun cream.

It does provide another good reason to jump on the kale bandwagon, though.


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