Posted on: 22.10.2021 Posted by: Drlark Comments: 0

June 10, 2004


Aging Beautifully

Age Spots

Sometimes called liver spots, age spots are the

harmless, round or oval, flat, irregularly-edged brownish spots

on the skin that begin to show after menopause.

Caused by an accumulation of cellular debris in

skin cells, age spots are the result of free radical oxidative damage

that is occurring throughout your body.

Exposure to the sun’s ultraviolet rays, heat, trauma,

radiation, heavy metals, and changes in oxygen potential also affect

the formation of melanin, the dark pigment in skin, and hastens

the formation of age spots.

In addition, poor eating habits—a diet based

on dairy, red meat, and saturated fats—have an effect on your

skin. According to Chinese medicine, these foods congest your liver,

blocking the chi, or energy, and preventing the liver from “purifying”

the blood. That leads to age spots, acne, eczema, boils, and other

skin lesions.

Age spots usually accompany other symptoms of skin

aging such as sagging, rough texture, and wrinkling. You may also

have hypopigmentation—white spots—or other kinds of hyperpigmentation

like freckles as the melanin making mechanism ages.

The usual treatment

Cosmetic bleaching creams which contain monobenzone

or hydroquinone (the same substance that’s in film developing chemicals)

are available to try to erase age spots. While these substances

may be effective at bleaching the surface of your skin, make sure

the dose is very low because they can damage deeper layers of skin

and even cause white spots.

Vitamin skin creams, while they may have a small

effect on the surface of skin, have not been proven to have an effect

on the deeper layers of skin.

Medical approaches to removing age spots include

laser surgery, burning with electricity, freezing, or peeling using

Retin A as a catalyst.

If you are uncomfortable with these approaches,

consider the following natural alternatives.

The natural approach

  • To combat free radical damage,

    start from the inside and work out. Eat a diet high in the antioxidants

    that scavenge free radicals. That means, increase your intake

    of foods high in beta carotene such as spinach, squash, sweet

    potatoes, mangoes, persimmons, cantaloupe, apricots, carrots,

    kale, and cabbage in your diet. One heaping teaspoon of spirulina,

    a seaweed, will give you 10,000 IU of vitamin A. Research

    published in 1947 showed that 100,000 units of vitamin A daily

    removed all age spots from subjects over a 12- to 16-month period.

    (Take a dose this high only under a doctor’s care.)

  • Take vitamin C (500-1000

    mg one to three times per day). Include cantaloupe, oranges, mangoes,

    blackberries, broccoli, cauliflower, and kohlrabi, which are high

    in collagen-building vitamin C, in your diet.

  • Take vitamin E as d-alpha

    tocopherol (400-1600 IU). If you have hypertension or are taking

    insulin, start at 100 IU. Vitamin E is useful for a wide variety

    of dermatologic complaints besides hyperpigmentation. In my files,

    I have research papers on its therapeutic effect on skin conditions

    as varied as warts, herpes, keloids and atopic dermatitis.

  • Stop smoking. It hastens

    the aging of your skin and contributes to free radical damage

    throughout your body.

  • Use sunscreen, at least

    SPF 15, whenever you go outside. It’s never too late to start

    protecting your skin from the harmful effects of ultraviolet light.

Read More on Aging Beautifully:

Getting Started

Beautiful Skin: At What Price?

Beyond Moisturizer and Sunscreen

Acne? But I’m an Adult

Keep it SIMPLE Beauty Tip—Banishing Wrinkles

Nutritional Therapies

EFAs = Extremely Flawless Appearances

Foods to Avoid

Complementary Therapies

Aromatherapy for Hair Loss

Exercises for Varicose Veins



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