Summer's Best Superfoods

These foods not only help you stay slim; they can cure summer's bummers. Even bug bites!

Strawberries: Block Sunburn

They have ellagic acid, a compound that protects against UV radiation, an animal study in Experimental Dermatology finds. This acid works by reducing the release of molecules linked to inflammation—which can lead to that oh-so-attractive lobster look. Plus, the acid preserves skin smoothing collagen. Adios, wrinkles.

More: 6 Cancer-Fighting Superfoods

Leafy Greens: Double as Shades

When eyes are exposed to excess sunlight over time, it can trigger cataracts and macular degeneration. Before you tune out, know that these "granny problems" can start to develop as early as your 20s and 30s. Load up now on dark greens (spinach, kale) for their lutein and zeaxanthin, compounds that can filter out damaging blue-light rays.

More: Your Guide to Eating Greens

Tart-Cherry Juice: Gives You Staying Power

It's outdoor-sports time, but post-exercise soreness can cramp your summer-partying style. Stay loose with this juice. Runners who drank it pre-race had 67 percent less pain afterward than nonsippers, the Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition indicates. Tart cherries pack anthocyanins, antioxidants that reduce inflammation.

More: Food Fixes for Running Issues

Green Tea: Shrinks Your Stomach

Meet your bikini-body secret weapon. The brew's antioxidants may help block fat absorption, data from Penn State in University Park notes. Mice eating green tea extract put on pounds more slowly than tea-free mice. About 2 cups a day in hot, chilled or ice-pop form may help us slim down, too.

More: Nutrition Battle Zone: Tea Review

Garlic: Kicks Ticks

People who popped garlic pills (1,200 milligrams, the equivalent of two cloves a day) got fewer tick bites than placebo takers, The Journal of the American Medical Association shows. Garlic may change the way you taste, turning off the bloodsuckers. Eat the bulb, or try supplements if the smell is too much for you.

More: Top 10 Super Foods for Endurance Athletes 

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SELF Editors

SELF gives you great advice on being healthy, happy, slimmer, fitter and less stressed.
SELF gives you great advice on being healthy, happy, slimmer, fitter and less stressed.

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