The sun is a real scourge for your skin . Its powerful UV rays heat your skin and your cells defend themselves by drawing their most powerful weapon: melanin . This absorbent pigment captures ultraviolet rays to counteract solar attack. However, excessive exposure totally disrupts this pigment secretion, leading to spots which alter the uniformity of your complexion . The phenomenon is only made worse by another defense mechanism of the skin: the production of free radicals. These unstable molecules end up oxidizing the cells and degrading the physiological mechanisms that take place in their hearts, such as the synthesis of melanin . We show you how a colorful plate of carefully chosen fruits and vegetables can help you prevent the appearance of this hyperpigmentation .
1) Foods rich in vitamin C
Foods concerned : citrus fruits, kiwi, strawberries, watercress, tomatoes, peppers.
Vitamin C plays an important role in the synthesis of melanin . It is in fact necessary for the production of tyrosinase , an enzyme which transforms tyrosine into melanin . It has been shown that when vitamin C levels are insufficient , melanin synthesis can be impaired , leading to irregular skin pigmentation . People with vitamin C deficiencies may therefore have lighter skin or pigmentation spots .
Vitamin C also plays a role in the synthesis of collagen , one of the major constituents of the skin , which ensures the normal functioning of the skin and in particular good healing. Thus, acne lesions, for example, heal correctly without residual pigmentary disturbance . The healing process is also favored by better irrigation and therefore nutrition and oxygenation of the skin thanks to blood vessels reinforced by the collagen booster effect of vitamin C.
Finally, vitamin C protects the skin against oxidative stress caused by UV rays and pollution . This shield helps prevent excessive skin reactions such as hyperpigmentation .
2) Foods rich in carotenoids
Foods affected : tomato, carrot, pumpkin, pumpkin, sweet potato, mango, apricot, melon, yellow peach, watermelon, spinach, watercress, kale.
Carotenoids are natural pigments present in certain foods such as fruits and vegetables which have antioxidant and anti- inflammatory properties. Thus, they will fight against oxidative stress caused by sun exposure and therefore avoid the disruption of internal cellular mechanisms such as melanin synthesis.
Certain carotenoids such as beta-carotene , lutein and zeaxanthin also have photoprotective properties and can help protect the skin against UV damage, including dark spots, by absorbing some of the ultraviolet rays in place of melanin . to avoid overstimulation and therefore hyperpigmentation .
3) Foods rich in polyphenols
Foods affected : red grapes, tomatoes, blackberries, raspberries, blueberries.
Polyphenols are a class of plant compounds that have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Thus, the cells and their internal mechanisms are preserved from oxidative stress and the healing processes take place for the best in the presence of these phytochemical molecules .
It has been shown that certain polyphenols can help protect the skin from UV damage and reduce the appearance of age spots and hyperpigmentation . This beneficial effect on skin pigmentation is explained by their ability to regulate melanin.
For example, epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) contained in green tea has been shown to reduce the activity of tyrosinase, an enzyme involved in the synthesis of melanin, and therefore reduce hyperpigmentation . Also, quercetin and kaempferol , may have inhibitory effects on melanin production .
4) Foods rich in vitamin A
Foods affected : liver, egg yolk, fatty fish, butter, cheese.
Vitamin A is a fat-soluble vitamin that plays an important role in skin health . It is necessary to maintain healthy skin and regulate melanin production by reducing tyrosinase activity, the enzyme involved in melanin synthesis. It therefore makes it possible to treat pigmentation problems such as hyperpigmentation and age spots .
Vitamin A also plays a role in cellular specialization which allows, in the event of skin damage , to recreate melanocytes capable of secreting normally and without excess the pigment which gives color to the skin .
5) Foods rich in vitamin E
Foods concerned : vegetable oil (sunflower, walnut, hazelnut, olive, rapeseed, etc.), almond, hazelnut, fresh vegetables.
Vitamin E is a fat-soluble vitamin that has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.
It has been shown that vitamin E can neutralize free radicals , secreted by cells in defense response to oxidative stress induced by UV rays. Thus, it helps protect the skin against damage caused by these unstable molecules , such as hyperpigmentation. It therefore helps to reduce the appearance of age spots. It would also have a direct role on the synthesis of melanin via a downregulation of tyrosinase activity.
6) Foods rich in zinc
Foods concerned : wheat germ, oysters, calf's liver, wholemeal bread, seafood, egg yolk, pumpkin seeds, nuts.
Zinc is a mineral that plays an important role in skin health .
Firstly, it contributes to normal DNA synthesis , normal protein synthesis (with involvement in the production of collagen and elastin) and has an action on cell division . All these properties allow it to promote the healing process, in the event of skin lesions, and thus to avoid spots that persist on the skin following healing.
Second, zinc contributes to the metabolism of vitamin A , fatty acids and other nutrients to reinforce the beneficial effects previously mentioned.
Thirdly, this mineral protects cells against oxidative stress induced by the sun's rays and therefore against associated pigment damage.
Finally, zinc acts directly on the production of melanin by regulating it. Indeed, it has been shown that insufficient levels of zinc can cause pigmentation problems and that supplementation can help reduce hyperpigmentation .
7) Foods rich in selenium
Foods concerned : seafood, fish, mushrooms, garlic, onion, whole grains.
Selenium is a mineral that will act on several levels to prevent pigment spots .
First of all, it is involved in the production of collagen and elastin , for healing without pigment rebound .
It is also important in the cell's antioxidant defense mechanisms by providing protection against damage caused by free radicals induced by UV rays.
Studies have found that insufficient levels of selenium can cause hyperpigmentation problems . This mineral would therefore have a role in regulating the production of melanin by reducing the activity of tyrosinase .
Fruits and vegetables are rich in antioxidant and/or anti-inflammatory vitamins and minerals. This constitutes a first barrier to the disruption of intracellular physiological mechanisms such as melanin synthesis. By neutralizing free radicals, UV-induced oxidative stress is reduced, as is pigment cell damage. Some of these nutrients also have a direct role in the synthesis of melanin, via tyrosinase, a very important enzyme in the production of this pigment. Finally, the nutritional content of these colored foods helps prevent pigment rebound by ensuring healing in the best conditions. If diet proves insufficient, resorting to supplementation may prove useful, notably with Absolu+ White , the first anti-hyperpigmentation chewable tablets.