Somebody told me I looked pasty. Does that mean I've eaten too many sweets?

A pasty, or pale complexion might have something to do with your diet. More likely, you haven't soaked up enough rays from the summer sun to give your skin a warmer glow. So, you might be looking a little washed-out (the color of paste, perhaps) from winter time.

Pasties, plural of the noun form of pasty, can be similar to pastries. Both use pastry dough to provide a taste treat, sometimes filled with fruit, custard, or even meat and vegetables.

In Ivanhoe, author Sir Walter Scott refers to a pasty as a foodstuff:

. . . when he swallowed to his own single share the whole of a large pasty composed of the most exquisite foreign delicacies, and termed at that time a "Karum-Pie."

Within the Tale of Sir Topas (The Canterbury Tales), Geoffrey Chaucer offers a look at a member of the merchant-born Flemish knighthood. The Prioress character's' concern with virginity, meekness, and innocence finds its reflection in the comparison of the knight's pasty complexion with "payndemayn," a kind of bread that commonly had been stamped with the images of the Savior and the Virgin Mary.