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What exactly is melanin?
Melanin is a pigment found in the skin. It occurs in both people and animals and is responsible for the darker appearance of hair, skin, and eyes.
Melanin may help protect the skin from ultraviolet radiation, according to research. Increased melanin production may also assist to inhibit the processes in the body that contribute to skin cancer.
For many years, research has demonstrated that persons with darker skin had a reduced incidence of skin cancer, and those of non-Caucasian ancestry tend to have more melanin. However, further study is needed to determine whether higher melanin is the primary explanation for this risk reduction.
Is it possible to enhance melanin production?
Individuals with any skin tone can experiment with boosting melanin to lower their chance of developing skin cancer. Certain studies indicate that increasing your consumption of certain nutrients may result in an increase in melanin levels. It may even help those with pale skin types produce more melanin.
MELANIN MAY BE IMPROVED BY NUTRIENTS
There is no research demonstrating how to enhance melanin directly. Numerous nutrients are believed to increase melanin, on the other hand, might enhance overall skin health and may help lower your overall chance of getting skin cancer.
Methods for increasing the amount of melanin in your body
Nutrients may hold the secret to naturally boosting melanin levels in the skin. Here are a few foods that research shows may aid in the production of melanin by your body.
The highest potential for boosting melanin synthesis is demonstrated by antioxidants. While further study and high-quality trials are required, some evidence indicates that antioxidants may be beneficial.
Micronutrients like flavonoids and polyphenols found in plants function as strong antioxidants and may influence melanin formation. Some of them promote the production of melanin, while others may aid in its reduction.
Increase your intake of antioxidant-rich foods such as dark leafy greens, dark berries, dark chocolate, and colorful veggies. Vitamin and mineral supplements may also be beneficial.
According to studies, vitamin A is required for the synthesis of melanin and is necessary for maintaining healthy skin. Vitamin A is obtained from the diet, particularly beta carotene-rich foods such as carrots, sweet potatoes, spinach, and peas.
Due to vitamin A’s antioxidant properties, some experts believe that this vitamin, more than any other, maybe necessary for melanin formation. However, further research is required to conclusively demonstrate that vitamin A enhances melanin in humans.
At the moment, evidence that vitamin A increases melanin levels is largely anecdotal. However, some research indicates that supplementing with vitamin A (particularly, retinol) may benefit skin health.
Vitamin A contains a kind of carotenoid (the pigment that gives red, yellow, and orange vegetables their color). According to studies, it may also have a function in melanin synthesis and UV protection.
Vitamin A levels can be increased by increasing consumption of vitamin A-rich foods such as orange vegetables (carrots, squash, and sweet potatoes), fish, and meat. Supplementing with vitamin A may also be beneficial.
Vitamin A is a fat-soluble vitamin, which means that it may accumulate in the body. The National Institutes of Health (NIH) recommends that women consume 700 mcg of vitamin D daily and males consume 900 mcg. Children require considerably less vitamin A on a daily basis.
Pregnant women should never exceed the recommended daily amount of Vitamin A, since this poses risks to the unborn child.
Vitamin E is critical for skin health. Additionally, it is an antioxidant and may help increase melanin levels.
While no research has shown a clear relationship between vitamin E and increased melanin, some evidence suggests vitamin E may help protect skin from UV damage.
Vitamin E can be obtained by supplementation or through the consumption of vitamin E–rich foods such as vegetables, cereals, seeds, and nuts.
Vitamin C, like vitamins A and E, is an antioxidant. Vitamin C is required for the maintenance of healthy mucous membranes. It may also have an effect on the synthesis of melanin and the protection of the skin.
There is no research demonstrating that vitamin C stimulates melanin formation. However, anecdotal data shows that vitamin C may promote melanin production.
Consuming meals high in vitamin C, such as citrus, berries, and leafy green vegetables may help improve melanin synthesis. Additionally, taking a vitamin C supplement may be beneficial.
Herbs and botanicals
Several studies have investigated the possible advantages of herbs and teas in terms of protecting the skin from the damaging effects of ultraviolet radiation. Green tea and turmeric-based products, which are high in flavonoids and polyphenols, may help enhance melanin and protect the skin.
To yet, no study has established that any plant increases melanin synthesis. At the moment, such statements are just anecdotal.
If you’re interested in experimenting with herbs to assist your skin, these plants are available in supplements, teas, and essential oils.
Essential oils are not intended for oral use. They are intended to be diffused into the air for aromatherapy purposes or mixed in a carrier oil and used on the skin as a massage oil.
The bottom line
According to some studies, there may be many strategies to enhance melanin. While these data are not conclusive, supplementing with antioxidants and vitamin A is the most likely method.
Consuming nutritious foods and supplements containing specific vitamins and antioxidants, such as Vitamins A, C, and E may aid in skincare and may help lower your chance of developing skin cancer, according to research.
However, it has not been shown if any vitamin or food reliably increases melanin levels in people. The only known method of preventing skin cancer is to avoid excessive sun exposure and to use high-quality sunscreen.