Vitiligo Diet Tips to Remember

Foods rich in vitamin b12

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  • A healthy and balanced diet that helps regulate the immune system is recommended for anyone who has or is at risk of contracting vitiligo. There are also specific vitamins and minerals that can help in promoting the production of melanin
  • Vitiligo patients should avoid certain types of food to avoid aggravating the symptoms of this condition

While the exact cause of vitiligo has not been pinpointed, studies have shown that this skin condition can be directly affected by different components in the environment, including diet. A healthy and balanced diet that helps regulate the immune system is recommended for anyone who has or is at risk of contracting vitiligo. There are also specific vitamins and minerals that can help in promoting the production of melanin.

Vitamins and Minerals That Can Help Improve Vitiligo

Some of the essential vitamins and minerals that can help you deal with vitiligo include the following:

Vitamin B12 and folic acid. Vitamin B12 is used by the body in the conversion of homocysteine. When the body lacks enough vitamin B12 and folic acid, a homocysteine buildup eventually triggers the production of reactive oxygen species, which causes oxidative stress in the skin.

This may lead to the destruction of melanocytes and the worsening of vitiligo symptoms.1 Some examples of foods rich in vitamin B12 are organic grass fed beef, raw milk, sardines and wild Alaskan salmon.2

Vitamin C. Vitamin C is essential for the reduction of reactive oxygen species, due to its antioxidant properties. The ingestion of vitamin C also helps in stabilizing the immune system, preventing an autoimmune response from happening.3

Vitamin D. Studies show that improving the vitamin D levels in the blood helps in promoting melanogenesis, or the production of pigment in the skin. This vitamin has also been observed to protect cells from cell death and regulate the immune system to stop it from attacking healthy cells.4

Sun exposure can also help optimize your vitamin D levels naturally, but because vitiligo patients have increased sensitivity to sunlight, you can instead get vitamin D from foods like eggs, shiitake mushrooms, wild Alaskan salmon and sardines. Taking a vitamin D3 supplement is also a good alternative.

Vitamin A. Foods rich in vitamin A help regulate the immune system and prevent it from producing an autoimmune response. This vitamin has also been linked to the promotion of skin health on a cellular level. This directly contributes to the preservation of your melanocytes, which may slow down or inhibit the development of vitiligo.5

Zinc. Zinc is a mineral with antiapoptotic properties, which means it helps avoid premature cell death. It has also been noted to be an important component for the production of pigment.6 Foods rich in zinc include spinach, organic grass fed beef and legumes.7

Foods to Avoid When You Have Vitiligo

Vitiligo patients should avoid the following types of food to avoid aggravating the symptoms of this condition:

Gluten. This component found in wheat has been closely linked to inflammation, which can trigger the immune system to become active and start attacking your melanocytes. Studies suggest that vitiligo patients with celiac disease showed dramatic improvement once they employed a gluten-free diet, with vitiligo patches eventually re-pigmenting or improving through time.8

Sugar. Sugar is another ingredient that promotes inflammation. Too much sugar in the system may trigger a severe autoimmune response, which may worsen vitiligo symptoms.

GE (GMO) foods. Foods from genetically engineered plants (sometimes referred to as genetically modified organisms or GMOs) have been widely criticized throughout the market because of the negative effects they have on the human body. Vitiligo patients could also worsen their condition because of the chemical components that come with the production of these plants, including pesticides and insecticides.9

MORE ABOUT VITILIGO

Vitiligo: an Introduction

What Is Vitiligo?

Vitiligo Symptoms

Vitiligo Causes

Types of Vitiligo

Vitiligo Treatment

Vitiligo Prevention

Vitiligo Diet

Vitiligo FAQ

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