The appearance of white patches on the skin surface without any other changes taking place is a condition commonly known as vitiligo. The melanocytes or the skin’s pigment cells for some reason stop the production of melanin, the pigment that gives human skin its color.
The affected area contrast greatly with the other normal areas of the skin and becomes very noticeable, and vitiligo as a condition is usually noticed in the summer. Because of the loss of melanin, the vitiligo affected patch of skin becomes very easily affected by sunlight, since the role of the darkening of the skin is to protect against the effects of sunlight, the loss of pigment in effect means that the area of pigment less skin can be easily burned by incident sunlight.
The condition has no particular time of occurrence and vitiligo may appear during adulthood or during childhood. Another interesting point is that in the regions of the skin that are affected with vitiligo, the parts of the skin that have hair follicles on them are the places where the production of melanin last longest.
Underlying autoimmune disorders like pernicious anemia, such as that induced by vitamin B12 deficiency, or the presence of an overactive thyroid, a metabolic disorder such as diabetes or even the presence of Addison’s disease due to loss of cortisone, can all become causes for the appearance of vitiligo in an individual.
Other physical deficiencies such as the depletion of gastric acids, leading to the poor absorption of nutrients and the presence of other digestive and stomach disorders may also induce the onset of vitiligo in an individual. Stomach acid depletion and loss is usually triggered by the heavy use of medications like antacids and other anti ulcer drugs, hereditary factors or even food allergies can also be responsible.
Vitiligo is almost always present in people suffering from alopecia areata, which is a form of circular hair loss, and both conditions occur concurrently in an individual.
Supplements and herbs
Nutrient absorption and assimilation is the most vital process affected in the metabolism of a person with vitiligo, this comes about because of a depletion of gastric acids in the stomach of the affected individual. The loss of stomach acids can be made good by some form of acid supplementation and in those cases the condition of poor or impaired nutrient absorption can dramatically increases.
Digestion can be improved with a resulting benefit to better nutrient uptake through the use of betaine HCL (hydrochloric acid). Because this supplement may affect the rate of production as natural HCL, and due to the possibility of over dependence on it, the supplementation with this acid is to be carried out only in the short term.
The dosage can be lowered once it becomes the stomach burns or there is a warm sensation. Because of their deficiencies in the body, due to poor absorption in the stomach, supplements of the B complex vitamins are necessary and have been shown to be successful in treating vitiligo, when they are used as for prolonged periods of time.
Some of the nutritional supplements like the amino acid glutamine, the enzyme pepsin, natural acids like apple cider vinegar and lemon juice, or even stomach bitters, vitamins like B5 and B6, ascorbic acid like vitamin C or PABA can all be used in individuals in whom genetic factors play a role, and these supplements will remedy the condition. These supplements are to be taken along with the diet, before or in the middle of each meal, and will greatly aid in the alleviation of the condition.
Before every meal, consume a tbsp. of apple cider vinegar or if you prefer a tsp. of Swedish bitters with some water, where you are very sure that the cause of the vitiligo is due to the loss of gastric acids in the stomach.
There are a number of herbal remedies for vitiligo and they include using mustard oil and turmeric. Make a paste by blending approximately five teaspoons of pounded turmeric with 250 ml of mustard oil and apply it to the discoloured skin areas two times every day. In addition, basil leaves are also known to be effective in stimulating melanin production in the skin.
Basil leaves may be used blended with lime juice to cure patches caused by vitiligo. Blend some drops of basil leaf extract with a few drops of lime juice and apply the mixture to the affected areas.
The therapy mentioned above is known to cause improved results within five to six months. One more treatment for vitiligo entails drinking water stored in copper utensils. This is said to have a invigorating action on the melanocytes and, therefore, facilitates in augmenting the production of melanin.
It is important to note that the water should be kept in the copper utensil overnight. Although doing this does not cure the condition instantaneously, you need to continue drinking water kept overnight in a copper utensil for some time to usher the best results. It may be noted that psoralea is an herb that is employed to treat vitiligo and may also be utilized in home remedies.
The herb’s seeds as well as tamarind may be steeped in water for roughly four days and subsequently dried out and pulverized to prepare a paste. The paste should be applied to the areas affected by vitiligo for a period of about a month.
It is prudent to make use of this herbal remedy under the guidance of a professional. Alternatively, you may also steep the seeds of psoralea in ginger juice for about two to three days, dry them out and subsequently pound it into a powder. Put in one gram of this powder in a cup (250 ml) of milk and consume it.
You may continue with this practice for a period of two months to restore the pigmentation in the white patches caused by vitiligo. In addition, you may also blend psoralea with coconut oil, black cumin, barberry roots. While coconut oil is helpful in treating a variety of skin conditions, use of cumin perks up the immune system. Even the barberry roots enclose substances that facilitate in protecting the skin.
These elements may be blended to prepare a paste that ought to be applied to the white patches every day for a period of six months.
A number of natural health aficionados are of the view that the seeds of radish may cause rejuvenation of melanin. Include a few teaspoons of vinegar to radish seed powder and blend it into a paste. You may apply this paste to the affected area every day for a minimum period of six months. It may be noted that the herb called Mama Cadela has been traditionally employed for treating vitiligo patches.
The roots of this herb may be simmered in water and the extract applied to the skin areas affected by vitiligo. In addition, the herb ginkgo biloba is a well-accepted remedy that is employed by herbalists to cure a variety of health conditions.
Findings of a number of studies have hinted that ginkgo biloba assists in restricting the advancement of vitiligo and, at the same time, facilitates in re-pigmenting the white patches caused by this condition. Such results are likely owing to the therapeutic properties of this herb which naturally perks up the immune system. In fact, ginkgo biloba is said to be more effectual when it is ingested compared to applying the herb externally.
Specific homeopathic remedies are known to be effective in curing vitiligo. Generally, homeopathic physicians recommend the use of remedies like Natrum carbonicum, Alum, Silica, Phosphorus, Sepia and Sulfur to treat this skin condition. It is advisable that the precise remedy should be best selected by a competent homeopath.
Additional things you may do
To restore normalcy in the functioning of the body, it is very important to exercise regularly and to take adequate rest and sleep at regular times, physical fitness will go a long way in combating the situation.
According to the findings of a study, using supplements containing vitamin C, vitamin B12 and folic acid has shown remarkable re-pigmentation of the skin of vitiligo patients.
In addition, you may also apply a sunscreen containing the sun protection factor (SPF) of 30 or even higher every day to all the areas that have been de-pigmented with a view to shield the affected skin from photo-aging and sunburn. In this case, it is preferable to use a sun block that contains zinc oxide as well as titanium dioxide.
You can do this even if you do not think that you will be going outdoors, because your skin is also exposed to sunlight by means of the windows in your home and car. Areas that have been affected by vitiligo and not having any defensive pigment actually burn more easily and are also additionally vulnerable to developing skin cancer.
A product named Total Block having a combination of an SPF of 60 and antioxidants as well as a mask defensive liquid makeup is said to to cover as well as shield the areas affected by vitiligo in a cosmetically pleasurable manner.
You ought to also make the best efforts to keep away from trauma, since it has been found that vitiligo often develops in the areas affected by cuts and scrapes.
Our diet also has a considerable effect on our body’s ability to resist a variety of ailments and contagions. It is likely that when one’s diet is lacking in proper and adequate nutrition, his/ her skin may be vulnerable to skin complaints like vitiligo more frequently and easily. Hence, it is important that we all have a nourishing and healthy diet, which is generally beneficial for our body.
Therapeutic cure for vitiligo has a tendency to carry on for prolonged periods and it is necessary to keep the body hale and hearty during this period, as it will facilitate the healing process. In effect, people who have been enduring vitiligo ought to aspire to eat healthy as well as balanced meals. Foods that are beneficial for our health and need to be included in our every day diet comprise substances like black pepper, olive oil, green tea and so on.
PABA, 50 mg a day
Vitamin C, with bioflavonoids, 1,000 mg once a day
Vitamin B complex, 50 mg thrice a day
L-glutamine, 500 mg a day
Betaine HCL, one capsule thrice a day
Other beneficial herbs