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  • Age spots/skin spots?

    I just turned 30 on Monday. So, 'age spots' may not be the right term for this, but...

    The ONLY negative/odd/strange thing I've noticed since beginning my PB journey a year ago is that I've started developing some spots on my skin. They are generally light brown, on my face, small, kind of hard to see/notice, but they are there. I just noticed a new one, Marilyn Monroe style, on my upper lip. (It's not a mole or nearly as dark as her's was, but its still there.)

    What could be causing this? I'm not someone who spends tons of time in the sun and never have been. I have pale skin, and after this year of supping w/ D was thrilled to tan and not burn, but didn't spend *more* time in the sun b/c of it, so I don't think its a 'too much sun' issue. Is it nutrient (deficiency) related? I'm continually working on the best balance for me....

    What could be going on here? It's just....odd, and kind of freaky.

    All the spots are flat, just fyi. And could be easily covered w/ a light layer of foundation I'm sure, if I wore it. (I almost never wear makeup.) So quite light....

    Any thoughts or ideas appreciated!!!
    My Before/After Pics
    Are you new here? Be sure to check these links FIRST, before reading anything on the forum! Succeed & PB 101

    "I am a work in progress." -Ani DiFranco

  • #2
    Found this which is super helpful: http://www.health911.com/liver-spots

    As we age our metabolism changes and the liver may become so overwhelmed with toxins that it cannot rid the body of them. Oxidation within the body and the lack of antioxidants also plays an important role in this process. Age spots are one of the results.
    This is SOOOOO possibly a big factor for me. I've done so much detoxification b/c of my diet in the past couple of years (just naturally--not doing any specific 'detox diets' etc) *and* I definitely have been working to open detoxification pathways w/ certain nutrients (to get the shit OUT, which has been a problem for me.) I eat awesome (primal) foods, BUT I also am working on absorbing my nutrients as best as possible--which is an issue for me.

    This seems like a good place to start/focus for me:
    Supplements

    Beta-carotene Take beta-carotene, an antioxidant that slows the aging process.

    Bioflavonoids Working with vitamin C, bioflavonoids assist in tissue repair.

    Potassium A deficiency in potassium may be one of the causes of liver spots. Eat potassium-rich foods or take a supplement.

    Selenium You may have a selenium deficiency. If your daily vitamins don't have selenium, take a selenium supplement for a few months. In many areas of the country the selenium content of the soils has been depleted so that we don't get enough in our regular diet.

    Vitamin C An antioxidant, vitamin C helps tissue repair.

    Vitamin E Take 1 vitamin E capsule (400 I.U.) daily; at night puncture another capsule and rub the oil on the spots and leave it on overnight. You may use castor oil at night instead. Vitamin E is an antioxidant that slows aging and aids in tissue repair.

    Zinc Another mineral supplement to take is zinc. Take 15 mg a day for one to two months. Don't take more than 15 mg without a doctor's supervision, as it may hinder the body's absorption of other minerals, especially copper.
    I've very recently started supping w/ individual vites/minerals (instead of a multi) using highly absorbable forms of the nutrients and/or with food. I actually considered getting a C/E/selenium blend, but didn't (was planning to use acerola cherry powder for the vit C, a supp for the E, and brazil nuts for the selenium) but maybe I *will* get it, or single (highly absorbable) supps of all of them, esp if I'm dealing w/ deficiencies in these things. (I've got optizinc and a mixed tocopherol vit E coming from iherb already, so that's a plus...)

    Oxidation within the body and the lack of antioxidants also plays an important role in this process.
    Hmmmm...I wonder if this could be related to taking higher doses of fish oil supps as well?? (I average 1-4 g a day using NOW's DHA 500...)


    Again, if anyone has other ideas or recommendations please share!
    My Before/After Pics
    Are you new here? Be sure to check these links FIRST, before reading anything on the forum! Succeed & PB 101

    "I am a work in progress." -Ani DiFranco

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    • #3
      Originally posted by FairyRae View Post
      I just turned 30 on Monday. So, 'age spots' may not be the right term for this, but...
      Yes, indeed, they are. Though the more accurate terms are solar lentigines (len-tih-jheens) or solar lentigo (len-tee-go). Liver spots are a misnomer. It has nothing to do with the liver.

      Thankfully, your pigmentation is not PB-related but rather this equation:
      time/age + UV exposure = sundamage

      It doesn't mean you need to have spent 'a lot' of time in the sun. UVA penetrates glass and water. So being in the car = sundamage. Sun reflects off surfaces, so even being in the shade and wearing a hat isn't fully protective. Then there is always the conundrum of 'natural D from sun' and the sundamage that goes with it v. being highly sunprotective v. a happy medium.

      Darker skins (think Oprah) will have less sundamage over time b/c of the protection offered by their level of pigmentation. Lighter skins will have more sundamage *all other variables being equal*.

      The tendency to hyperpigment is genetic. My dad's aging shows up as skin sagging. He has few lines/wrinkles at age 77 and few lentigo. He's probably closer to a My mom is a true fitzpatrick II who hyperpigments - sundamage on her arms and chest almost look like freckles but they aren't - it's mottled hyperpigmentation (thought not nearly as bad as the picture, nor as dark).

      I get the same kind and have it to a mild degree on my arms and shoulders. I used to have much more sundamage (solar lentigines, mottled hyperpigmentation - which is just a lot of lentigo in an area, and erythema - 'permanent' redness...which btw isn't permanent) than I do now....

      It's nice that you're getting an early warning....or paying attention to the early warning. I didn't. I let it go and go and go until I was 35 and had much more of a mess to deal with. Some of the symptoms of photoaging are treatable (lentigo, erythema, mottled hyperpigemntation, actinic keratoses, some fine lines) - some aren't (sagging)

      kind of hard to see/notice, but they are there. I just noticed a new one, Marilyn Monroe style, on my upper lip.
      They will darken over time. As a mediterranean fitzpatrick phototype III, I can look quite pale if I'm being very very sun protective or get VERY dark very easily. But as do many italians, I hyperpigment very easily as does one of my kids. T1 hyperpigments *and* freckles...that's an unusual combination. T2 has the same skintone (maybe a touch lighter but not a II), doesn't hyperpigment, doesn't freckle but has the familial mole forming thing which is means she has the genetic propensity to develop melanoma (which my mom has had). Good times!

      To avoid avoiding, prevent and reverse (to an extent) sundamage, the important things include:
      1) a diet Very Very rich in antioxidants. this is where the literature is pretty clear that plants *do* have magical properties (sorry Kurt of PaNu). High levels of tissue and topical antioxidants basically act as sun protection to some degree.

      2)the highest ppd (measure of UVA protection) sunscreen you can afford, obtain, tolerate. Proper use is also key - most apply too little sunscreen by a significant amount. I tend to use european sunscreens (bioderma or avene) with both Tinosorbs as they are the best UVA protection currently available. Zinc (contrary to popular belief) is not a great UVA blocker - while it blocks across the spectrum, it is very inefficient.

      3)keeping blood sugar healthfully low to avoid glycating proteins






      I've very recently started supping w/ individual vites/minerals (instead of a multi) using highly absorbable forms of the nutrients and/or with food. I actually considered getting a C/E/selenium blend, but didn't (was planning to use acerola cherry powder for the vit C, a supp for the E, and brazil nuts for the selenium) but maybe I *will* get it, or single (highly absorbable) supps of all of them, esp if I'm dealing w/ deficiencies in these things. (I've got optizinc and a mixed tocopherol vit E coming from iherb already, so that's a plus...)
      I spent about 5 years working on my skin before I came here. That was my previous project. (along with homeschooling and a few others)

      For optimizing your skin's own defense against UV:
      1)oral supplements won't be as helpful as getting nutrients from food. Aim for 10 servings non-starchy bright/dark veggies.....and 1-2 svgs berries if you eat fruit. I can get 7-8 svgs nonstarchy veggies and still roll it at 50ish g carbs.

      2)topical ascorbic acid C serum is your best bet if you're using *one* topical antixidant.

      Crap. I have a lab meeting. I'll try to write more later but just keep in mind these things:

      on a scale of 1-10 the most important things are

      • 1000 meticulous sun avoidance on the skin you don't want showing damage - ie highly protective UVA sunscreens applied properly and frequently, close fitting wrap sunglasses and a hat/visor of 5"

      • 10 rx retinoids used to tolerance (even if that tolerance is 30 seconds and then rinsing off)

      • 3 topical ascorbic acid serum....other topical antioxidants can be helpful but less so.

      • 1-2anything else....specific to a given situation...lactic, glycolic, mandelic, malic or other AHAs...moisturizers etc

      And maintaining a healthfully low BMI and maximum antixoidant protection from dark/bright produce is both the foundation and the overlay. It makes everything work better.

      See my google doc link below for more specifics.
      Last edited by cillakat; 11-05-2010, 06:37 AM.



      iherb referral code CIL457- $5 off first order

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      • #4
        Oh cillakat, you're the best! I'm so glad you posted. And I can't believe it can show so early!

        My mom has some age spots, and my dad is super freckly and looks a lot like the mottled hyperpigmentation pic you linked (and he's also got very wrinkled skin), so genetic sounds a/b right!

        I eat tons of veg but will be sure to keep better track. I do berries in a green smoothie every day as well--maybe I'll up the amount (I do .5 cup berries per smoothie atm.)

        Since NOT getting sunburned this past summer (b/c I'm taking my D ), I may not have covered up nearly as much as I would during past summers. I used NO sunscreen this year, and just got a tan. (I'm naturally pale and used to turn bright red in the sun, so generally always kept covered in the past.) Clearly I NEED to wear an effective hat/cover up of some sort.

        I'm very interested in learning more about the retinoids and topical ascorbic acid serum.

        I know very little on this whole topic--so I need to go read your docs!!!
        My Before/After Pics
        Are you new here? Be sure to check these links FIRST, before reading anything on the forum! Succeed & PB 101

        "I am a work in progress." -Ani DiFranco

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        • #5
          well fairyrae if it makes you feel any better I just turned 37 a few days ago and I have had some age spots for about 7 years or so. They are on my face near the high cheek bone area.
          ~*Lori*~
          my Primal journal : http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum...-momofredheads
          my food blog http://iamhungrywhatsfordinner.blogspot.com/

          SW 231 as of 1/1/2012
          CW 192

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          • #6
            It makes me feel *much* better that it's normal. I was worried there might be something wrong healthwise that was causing them. I may have just not noticed them developing over the past few years (been so consumed w/ caring for my now 3yo kiddo) so it seems as if they've all shown up at once.
            My Before/After Pics
            Are you new here? Be sure to check these links FIRST, before reading anything on the forum! Succeed & PB 101

            "I am a work in progress." -Ani DiFranco

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            • #7
              I think there may be some connection as well with brown spots (esp. on face) and adrenal insufficiency. I don't have the conclusive research on that, which I will look for, but I got two on my face when my adrenals bottomed out. As I've been treating my adrenals, it's been fading slowly (I don't use anything else on it, the only face stuff i use is coconut oil.) I know it's mentioned on a lot of questionnaires as being a possible symptom of adrenal insufficiency and I think (my book is at home) it's in Dr. Wilson's book on adrenal disorders.

              It's one of those things that made sense to me, however I haven't done enough research to back it up to say for sure!
              sigpic "Boy I got vision and the rest of the world is wearing bifocals" - Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid

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              • #8
                Originally posted by cillakat View Post
                2)topical ascorbic acid C serum is your best bet if you're using *one* topical antixidant.
                I checked out your google doc on ascorbic acid C serum awhile ago and decided to make my own. Just 10% c powder, glycerin and water. I'm not totally convinced that it was well absorbed as a topical though.

                Do you have any experience with homemade serums?

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                • #9
                  Minxxa, would you share what you are doing to treat your adrenal issues?
                  My Before/After Pics
                  Are you new here? Be sure to check these links FIRST, before reading anything on the forum! Succeed & PB 101

                  "I am a work in progress." -Ani DiFranco

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                  • #10
                    I'm 64, and have pale brown spots on the backs of my hands. Not too bad, and I still hope to get over them.

                    Anti-glycation: try a Google on "benfotiamine" It is good for fixing neuropathy, but it would be worth taking just for the anti-glycation alone.

                    Pycnogenol.

                    Fish oil gets rancid too easily. I've changed to krill oil. Pick a type with 1.5 or 2 milligrams of astaxanthin per gram of oil. The astaxanthin is excellent for preventing oxidation. If you go to Dr. Mercola's site, he recently had an interview with someone who is a professional expert on different kinds of edible oils. He talked about having a machine to test oxidation of oil, and he had krill oil in there for over 100 hours, hot, with air bubbling through it, and it didn't oxidize. He said that fish oil couldn't have made it for an hour. The astaxanthin is also supposed to protect you from sunburn.

                    Hope this helps. Glad you're taking D.

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                    • #11
                      Thanks PDL. What brand of krill oil do you prefer? (I believe I read they are all from a similar source so it doesn't matter much--I could totally be wrong though!) I prefer high DHA--not sure what the ratios are in krill. (I'll look into it more though for sure!) I also eat salmon 3-4x a week, and maybe could up that more, to avoid supping at some point in the future.

                      I need to look into the other info you've shared--I know nothing about any of it!

                      lcme, I too would be totally interested in making the C serum at home! (I LOVE my CHEAP and totally awesome transdermal magnesium oil, which just rocks!! Like, less than a dollar for months of the stuff...)
                      My Before/After Pics
                      Are you new here? Be sure to check these links FIRST, before reading anything on the forum! Succeed & PB 101

                      "I am a work in progress." -Ani DiFranco

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                      • #12
                        Fairy Rae, were you the one who posted about making transdermal magnesium oil from nigari bought online? My sister picked up on that, and was really taken with the idea.

                        The krill oil I like is "NKO" (short for Neptune Krill Oil) by Sources Naturals. I buy it from Vitacost. They have always had prompt service and good discounts.

                        Krill oils are not all the same. Check the astaxanthin level, which should be 1.5 mg. (like this brand) up to 2 milligrams per gram of oil. The expert on Dr. Mercola's site said that as they got better at refining the krill oil, the amount of astaxanthin got lower and lower, and hence the amount of preservation from rancidity (in and out of the body) dropped a lot. He also said that marine oils were not a place to go for whatever was the cheapest. You get what you pay for, apparently. He also talked about how hard it is to refine, package, and store fish oils without them going rancid, sometimes before they even leave the factory.

                        Pycnogenol is fairly pricey, but sounds like it has a great many benefits. I am just starting to use it. Vitacost offers something which isn't official pycnogenol, but is "Pine Bark Extract". It may be just as good, and it is much much cheaper. Only time will tell. I'm going to try both and see if I find any difference.

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                        • #13
                          Thank you! I'll look deeper into it. I've read that many folks are very satisfied w/ krill. (I take fish oil b/c of the omega 3s, and the source naturals has MUCH lower DHA than I prefer to take--so I may need to look into something else for that or just keep upping my fatty fish consumption if I seriously want to consider dropping regular fish oil...I currently buy what I consider a high quality one made by NOW--DHA 500. Lots to look into on this one!)

                          I did post about making mag oil w/ nigari flakes before. I think its been really helpful for my overall health in general!
                          My Before/After Pics
                          Are you new here? Be sure to check these links FIRST, before reading anything on the forum! Succeed & PB 101

                          "I am a work in progress." -Ani DiFranco

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                          • #14
                            I might suggest a few things as well. I was diagnoses with Melasma on my forehead a few years ago. I ended up avoiding the sun like crazy, which actually made the melasma more noticeable. Now, I allow my face to get enough of a tan to cover the Melasma. Also, I use Aloe Gel by AloeLife. It's a good, natural product to even out your face tone.

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                            • #15
                              I could tell the difference when I started the krill oil, just two a day. I felt more cheerful and energetic. I never got that reaction from taking fish oil or cod liver oil.

                              I think that there's more to omega 3's than just how much DHA is in the oil. Krill oil is supposed to be much more easily absorbed than fish oil, and the astaxanthin protects it (and you) from rancidity. Astaxanthin is a carotenoid, and good against sun damage. There's another carotenoid, canthaxanthin, which I read about years ago. It also protected against sunburn. I remember if you had too much your skin would get an orange cast. But that was lots and lots.

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