It’s really happening: some people who follow raw diets are claiming that over time, their eye and skin color change.
Kristina Carrillo-Bucaram, who blogs for FullyRaw, claimed in a YouTube video that her diet turned her eyes from dark brown to hazel, and she swears that blue is not too far off. Skeptics are scoffing, but she’s not the only one to make this assertion. According to Conscious Nourishment, a popular raw food blog, Steve Factor, “The Pure Energy Chef,” has noticed a gradual color change, too.
Carrillo-Bucaram, known among raw foodists as ‘Fully Raw Kristina’, said in her blog that eating a raw vegan diet not only cured her of the hyperglycemia that plagued her since childhood, it also changed the pigment in her irises. She consulted an iridologist, who told her that a poor diet creates toxic buildup that is reflected in the eyes.
“The cleaner you become, the cleaner your eyes become. I ate fully raw and I allowed my body to cleanse itself naturally,” she said, believing this caused the change in eye color.
Although no studies provide solid evidence for such claims, many raw diet aficionados and alternative healers believe that brown eyes signal the presence of toxins in the body, while blue eyes represent good health. They assert that when a person becomes healthier, their irises gradually turn blue or even light gray due to the body’s regeneration of new cells.
The effect of diet on skin is less controversial. It’s a running joke that snacking on too many carrot sticks will turn your skin orange, but there’s a real basis for this lighthearted warning: hypercarotenemia, or carotenosis, is a light orange skin discoloration resulting from high levels of carotene in the blood. It’s caused by eating high amounts of vitamin A, which carrots have in abundance.
Isabel Marant, the French fashion designer, says that she drinks carrot juice to give her skin a healthy glow. She told Harper’s Bazaar, “It’s true. I’ve noticed that I tan easily without being in the sun when I drink a glass of carrot juice.”
In 2010, Dr. Ian Stephen, who has studied the way a person’s face can affect how others perceive them, researched the connection between skin tone and a healthy appearance. He and his assistants discovered that a diet rich in certain fruits and vegetables, such as carrots, cantaloupe, and tomatoes (which are high in carotene) result in a golden-hued complexion for certain study participants.
“Most people think the best way to improve skin tone is to get a suntan, but our research shows that eating lots of fruit and vegetables is actually more effective,” he said.
Eating a lot of fruits and vegetables can improve your skin tone and may change your eye color, but it will definitely give you more energy, improve your digestion, and reduce your risk of developing heart and cardiovascular disease. That alone is enough to adopt a healthier diet. Blue eyes and a natural ‘suntan,’ should you experience either, will be an added bonus.
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