Vitiligo is an autoimmune disorder where the cells that make skin pigments are destroyed resulting in white patches of skin. As per Vitiligo Support International, people with this genetic disorder may be deficient in certain nutrients. Though there is no recommended diet regimen for vitiligo, nevertheless dermatologist recommends eating a wholesome diet for bolstering the immune system, where a robust immune system can avert the spread of the depigmentation. Generally, people with vitiligo may have to follow a special diet to avert progression and to correct nutritional deficiencies.
As vitiligo is an autoimmune disorder, it is pivotal to eat a nutritious diet loaded with bioactive plant compounds and antioxidants, which confers to strengthen the immune system and uplift skin health and promote repigmentation of the skin resulting in normal skin colour. Getting proper treatment with a dermatologist and consuming a nutritious diet may help cure this condition. However, it takes quite a long time to treat, hence patients should have the utmost patience to get completely cured. There are certain food items one should add and avoid to manage the condition.
Foods To Include:
There is no perfect vitiligo diet, however, it is essential to ease your condition by adopting a well-balanced and nutritious diet regimen.
Fruits such as figs, apricots, mango, dates, apples and bananas are heaped with antioxidants, vitamins and minerals that are valuable to enhance skin health and combat free radical damage of healthy skin cells.
Prefer having a plant oriented diet loaded with a host of bioactive compounds and phytonutrients such as spinach, beetroot, carrot, potato, cabbage, radish, cauliflower, red chilli, bitter gourd, and green beans. Ensure to have a major portion of these vegetables that supports nurturing skin health from deep within.
Power up with protein-rich foods such as lean meat, fish and eggs. For vegetarians yearn for beans, legumes, chickpeas, mushroom and lentils that are best to trigger the immune response and helps in tissue repair.
Dairy products are generally limited to moderate amounts.
Whole grains cereals are a source of dietary fibre, phytonutrients and healthy carbs, which are essential to feed the system and promote digestive health. Some of the food sources include –oats, brown rice, quinoa, corn, couscous and hand pound rice.
Herbs & Spices
Rosemary, thyme, basil, coriander leaves, clove, pepper, cardamom, cinnamon and nutmeg are some of the healing herbs that are valuable in building the immune system and averting depigmentation.
Omega 3 Fatty Acids
Foods rich in omega 3 fatty acids such as almond, walnuts, avocado and fatty fish forms a vital part of the vitiligo diet as it is known to improve blood circulation, prevent inflammation and trigger the immune system.
Drink plenty of fluids to prevent dehydration and flush out toxins from the system.
Patients suffering from vitiligo are usually deficient in vitamin B12, protein, calcium, minerals and DHA. Hence it is important to take supplements to overcome nutritional deficiencies. It is best to seek advice from your dermatologist before taking any supplements.
Correct Nutritional Deficiency
People suffering from vitiligo often are deficient in vitamin B12, folate and minerals such as copper and zinc. It is important to get vitamin and mineral levels checked and start adding foods rich in those nutrients or take supplements with advice from a doctor.
Foods To Avoid
Acidic foods such as lemons, gooseberry, orange, nectarine, lemon, lime, melon, grapes, grapefruit, tamarind and other fruits that are abundant in vitamin C may inhibit the formation of pigments and worsen the conditions.
Red and organ meat products should be avoided
High amounts of dairy products such as milk, curd and buttermilk.
Beverages, carbonated and sweetened drinks will slow down metabolism and hamper skin health.
Processed foods and foods with preservatives should be avoided as they have a negative impact on the immune system.
A person with vitiligo may feel depressed and emotionally upset. Thus it is vital to manage stress levels and maintain a positive and healthy mind. Practise yoga, meditation or deep breathing exercises or join a vitiligo support group to handle emotional stress.
Get exposed to sunlight to maintain adequate levels of vitamin D.The melanocytes in the skin tend to make melanin when exposed to sunlight, which supports the darkening of the skin and shield it from getting burned.
Get a sound sleep, as a restful body and mind is vital for the proper functioning of the bodily process.