Vitiligo is termed as an auto-immune disease in which cells forming melatonin are attacked by our own immune system. Basically, it’s a long-term condition in which skin pigment is lost and some white patches appear on the skin. Vitiligo is also found in animals, especially dogs. Since the immune system is at the base of this issue, one can improve the situation by enhancing immunity through diet and lifestyle. Although there is no research-based data about it but Vitiligo diet does improve the health in general and immunity in particular. We have collected some pieces of information from several sources to give you the best overview of the requisite diet for the Vitiligo patient.
Which vitamin deficiency causes white spots on skin?
Some vitamin deficiency doesn’t initiate Vitiligo. But this disease is often associated with the deficiency of vitamin B 12, B9 vitamin D. Research has shown that Vitiligo and pernicious anemia genes are closely related. Since, pernicious anemia results in low levels of vitamin B12, sometimes vitiligo patients also encounter it’s deficiency. But to say that vitamin B12 deficiency initiates it or is a cause of Vitiligo, will be wrong to say. Exceptionally similar is the case with Vitamin D. Although about 70% of patients of Vitiligo show vitamin D3 deficiency yet vitamin D deficiency isn’t actually the cause of Vitiligo.
Vitamins for Vitiligo
Although vitamin deficiency doesn’t cause Vitiligo yet patients are observed with several vitamin deficiencies. So, physicians often recommend the patient to use multi-vitamins and other supplements.
Besides the genetic basis, vitamin B12 deficiency also causes an obvious increase in homocysteine, which attacks the pigmentation of cells in general.
70% of persons suffering from Vitiligo are also seen with vitamin D3 deficiency. Although there is no clear evidence of whether this vitamin plays any role in the disease itself or not, yet the role of vitamin D in pigmentation is still under study.
Sunlight is one of the most reliable sources of vitamin D, especially at dawn. Light, filtered, and rising rays of sunlight in the early morning are an unmatched source of vitamin D. Sunlight does increase melatonin production in general, considering how people get tanned while basking. Moreover, fish liver oil, cod liver oil, fortified milk, and other fortified products also serve as good vitamin D sources.
Folate ( vitamin B9)
Vitamin B12 and B9 are closely associated and their deficiency plays an important role in anemia. Close linkage with the Vitiligo genes can be the explanation for the common deficiency.
Copper, iron, and zinc
It’s a common practice of Vitiligo patients to drink water out of the copper or iron skillet. Although, one cannot be sure that it really covers up the requisite uptake of the human body.
Vitiligo treatment at home
Since Vitiligo is an autoimmune disorder, a disorder caused by the over-activity of the immune system, the doctor advised avoiding any immunity-boosting diet. We have given below a brief account of the Vitiligo diet.
Vitiligo diet restrictions
Although every organic food is beneficial for health, yet Vitiligo patients sometimes react to certain food items more than others. Every individual is different so one might find some particular food more influencing than others. Some doctors are of the belief that melanogenesis is dependent upon physiological PH, that’s why eating sour food won’t be beneficial for the patient. Moreover, the food items that stimulate depigmentation are also prohibited by the physician.
Which fruits should be avoided in Vitiligo?
There are some fruits that should be avoided in Vitiligo due to any of the reasons mentioned above. Acidic fruits should be restricted in the diet of Vitiligo patients. Acidic fruits are famous for depigmentation.
- Citrus fruits (orange, lemon, etc.)
Dairy (cut down instead of total restriction)
- Yogurt (restricted because of acidic nature)
Is meat good for Vitiligo?
Vitiligo patients should avoid proteins as in general, especially red meat.
- Red meat (beef, pork, etc)
Which drinks should be avoided in Vitiligo?
- Soft drinks (beverages)
- Fruit juices
- Vitamin C enriched liquids
- Sweetened drinks
Which veggies should be avoided by Vitiligo patients?
- Green Chilli
- Tomato (scientifically a fruit)
- Turmeric (famous for depigmentation)
- Oily and processed food
- Artificial colors
- Canned food
- Omega 3
Why are blueberries bad for Vitiligo?
Hydroquinone is a bleaching agent that helps in depigmentation. It is commonly used in skin lightening creams and serums. Therefore, Blueberries and Grapeberries are avoided since they contain hydroquinone.
Foods items in the bucket
Several organic foods are naturally rich in Vitamin B12, B9 and vitamin D. Owing to the insufficient evidence and experimental data, researchers don’t support any kind of vitiligo diet treatment yet. But they are not against it either since improvement is observed in patients following several diet plans.
Here is a list of food items that should be included in the diet of a Vitiligo patient:
What fruits to eat in Vitiligo?
- Figs and dates (rich in copper, helps in pigmentation)
- Apricot (rich in copper, helps in pigmentation)
Which Vegetables to eat in Vitiligo?
70-90% of Vitiligo diet should consist of these vegetables.
- Leafy vegetables (spinach, cabbage)
- Rooty vegetables (carrots, beetroot)
- Green beans
Can Vitiligo Patients eat proteins?
Red meat is restricted for vitiligo patients but they can eat a few proteinaceous products.
- Organic eggs
- Chicken breast
- Wild fish
Dairy products can be eaten by Vitiligo patients?
- Can be used but in lower quantities. Curd should be avoided because of its acidic nature. Milk should not be cut off for growing children.
Which Grains are beneficial for a Vitiligo patient?
- Chickpeas and kidneys beans
Which juice is good for Vitiligo?
Fruit juices and coconut water are allowed. Careful that juice should not be of citrus fruit.
Which Supplements to take to avoid Vitiligo spreading?
It’s better to tackle the deficiency with a balanced diet instead of supplements. And those are better taken with your physician’s prescription.
What Spices are okay to take for a Vitiligo patient?
- Black pepper
A sufficient amount of water is also quite requisite to hinder the spread of this disease.
Any tight-fitting wear that might leave a mark or impression on the skin should be avoided. Rubber and plastic wear, elastic bands that people wear as bracelets, artificial accessories that stick to the skin should be avoided as those can leave light impressions on skin. Vitiligo patients should be careful of injuries, as the new white patches will develop there. Moreover, direct afternoon sunlight does no good for their skin. Some physicians also restrict the use of a swimming pool.
Does Vitiligo go away?
Vitiligo is a lifetime condition and does not get treated completely by medication. Diet and lifestyle changes can improve the pigmentation but it’s not a whole recovery. Consistent medication with a followed diet chart can improve the situation but it won’t be treated completely.
Ayurvedic treatment of Vitiligo
Different ayurvedic treatments are famous for Vitiligo treatment. Some ancient legends and herbal treatments are valid until today. One of the most famous ayurvedic treatment is as follows:
- Psoralea corylifolia (Babchi seeds)
- Cassia absus (Chasku seeds)
- Puwar Seed (Cassia Tora Seeds)
- Olive Oil
- Geru powder
Take equal amounts of the seeds in a grinder and make a powder. Soak this overnight in half a cup of water and breakfast with it in the morning.
Note: Drink this after taking your medicine. (If you are taking any)
Soak three figs in half a cup of water overnight and eat it after breakfast.
Drink one tablespoon extra-virgin Olive Oil every day.
Cream to apply for Vitiligo:
Take a tablespoon powder of Chasku, Babchi, and Punwar seeds and add a tablespoon of Geru Powder. For the better mixture, take equal amounts of these powders. Mix it well in a tablespoon of petroleum jelly and apply this on white patches overnight.