Question : I HAVE a lot of skin pigmentation on my face and hands. These brown patches are so unsightly. Can you tell me what's the cause of them? How can I get rid of my problem? Please advise.
Answer : PIGMENTATION is caused by many factors, such as genetics, ageing, excessive exposure to sunlight and certain drug medications. These include non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, anti-malarials, amiodarone, cytotoxic drugs, tetracyclines and psychotropic drugs. Those suffering from auto-immune disorders are also more susceptible to pigmentation disorders such as vitiligo.
Exposure to the sun stimulates the production of melanin, so stay away from it. For moderate exposure, the skin should be protected by a sunscreen having a minimum SPF of 15. Using a sun block is a good practice to prevent pigmentation.
Dietary wise, you may want to supplement your diet with an anti-free radical supplement containing vitamins A, C, E and minerals such as zinc and selenium to help neutralise free radicals that are damaging to the skin. Increase your intake of fresh fruits, nuts and vegetables as they contain anti-oxidant nutrients. Essential fatty acids such as omega-6 and omega-3 are important to protect the integrity of the cell membranes of our skin. These nutrients help to "plump" up the skin, making it more radiant and also are beneficial for other types of skin disorders such as psoriasis and eczema.