Are Age Spots Affecting Your Appearance?
As we grow older and particularly after the age of 40, we might start to notice age spots. While they are usually considered harmless, age spots can affect our appearance and self esteem.
Many will get their dermatologist or doctor to check them out and ask their advice for treatment. Suggestions will include Retinol, HQ creams, chemical peels and spot treatments, microdermabrasion, laser treatments or light therapy.
But such commercial products contain potentially harmful additives and chemicals while costly procedures can be painful and even lead to scarring.
What causes age spots?
While the sun can be a risk, it is not the only culprit. As we age, our metabolism changes and the liver can become overwhelmed with toxins. If the liver cannot rid the body of these toxins, age spots (also known as liver spots or sun spots) can begin to develop. Oxidation within the body and a lack of antioxidants in your diet can also play an important role in their development.
Even though the sun can be one of the causes, please don’t let that reason put you off the sun. The advertising and media world have already done a great job at that – to such good effect that they have managed to make a large proportion of the western world so afraid of the sun that they are now seriously vitamin D deficient.
We all need the sun but of course we can protect those areas vulnerable to age spots (such as hands and faces), not by slathering on the chemical-laden sun creams, but by keeping them shaded.
The rest of our bodies need exposure during those two hours either side of 12 noon but only until they start to turn the lightest shade of pink and no longer.
Always avoid sunburn. As you grow older or because you have a fairer complexion, you can be more prone to age spots.
The pigment in your skin is produced by melanin and exposure to ultraviolet (or UV) light accelerates melanin production. The aging process itself can also increase melanin production.
Nutrient deficiencies can play a part
A selenium deficiency can be one cause of age spots. Selenium is an essential trace mineral that plays an important role in protecting cells from free radicals. Just a handful of raw Brazil nuts will add extra selenium to your diet.
Another reason can be a deficiency in potassium. This can be avoided by including potassium-rich foods in your diet – apricots, avocados, bananas, cantaloupe, dates, figs, kiwi fruit and melons.
A healthier lifestyle will always help with improving any type of unwanted condition so, along with those fresh fruits, include as many raw fruits and vegetables as possible while making sure to drink plenty of pure, filtered water to keep the system cleansed.
Always make a conscious effort to avoid or eliminate processed foods, junk and fast foods, sodas, sweets, sugar, caffeine, alcohol and tobacco.
Age spots can be treated with these health-on-a-budget natural remedies
You don’t have to live with age spots if you would rather not. But be aware that such age spots took years to form. This means that getting rid of them could take time too. So any treatment requires patience.
1. Apple cider vinegar (and preferably organic) is one of the most widely used natural treatment for age spots. Apply a little apple cider vinegar directly onto the age spots and leave for 30 minutes before rinsing off. Be careful to use this treatment just once a day as it can be drying on the skin.
You should start to see an improvement in the appearance of the age spots after about six weeks. For added benefit, mix one part apple cider vinegar with one part onion juice (which you can extract by pushing chopped onion through a strainer) and apply this to the age spots instead.
2. Applying Aloe Vera gel to age spots is an effective way reduce their appearance and gentle enough for all skin types. Aloe contains a concentrated mix of compounds that nourish skin and promote cellular regeneration, keeping the skin hydrated and young too.
If you have a plant at home, you can use some fresh gel from its leave to apply to age spots. Here is how: cut a leaf and press a little with your fingers to take out the gel; apply to age spots; leave for about 30 minutes before washing off with water; repeat twice a day for a month or longer until your skin has lightened. It may feel a bit sticky on application.
3. The acid in lemon juice can help to fade the look of age spots by dabbing on freshly squeezed lemon juice twice a day. You should begin to notice an improvement in their appearance after about two months.
Leave the juice on the skin for at least 30 minutes or even overnight. If you are going outdoors, let the juice dry first.
4. The lactic acid in buttermilk will help the skin to be refreshed and become lighter. Pour some into a bowl and dip in a cotton ball before squeezing out any excess.
Use the ball to apply to the age spots and leave for 10 to 15 minutes before washing off with water. If you have an oily or acne prone skin, add a little lime juice to the buttermilk before using. For added benefit, mix a little tomato juice in with the buttermilk as tomato also contains bleaching properties.
5. H-Age Spots Formula is a dark spot removal alternative that is more gentle and kind to your skin because there are no chemicals or synthetic substances in this natural formula.
Using the highest quality homeopathic ingredients, and natural essential oils extracted from plants, the formula allows for deep penetration and assists in balancing skin tone to get a more even tone. The formula is very economical to use, making it ideal for those looking for health on a budget.
If your age spots change in appearance, then it is always wise to have them checked by a dermatologist, or your doctor. They may become irregularly shaped, itchy, tender or even grow larger. An unusual combination of colors is something else to look out for. While age spots usually pose no threat, some people will prefer to treat them anyway.