Age spots, or liver spots, resemble flat brown spots on your body and appear most often on your hands, face and neck. While these spots may indicate nothing more than the accumulation of sun exposure and aging, age spots may also indicate more serious health concerns such as poor liver function, lack of exercise and inadequate diet. You may be able to reduce the appearance of age spots, and even see them disappear in time, through regular vitamin supplements. Consult your primary care physician before adding any supplements to your diet so as to avoid adverse reactions.
Vitamin E, a powerful antioxidant, may be able to help minimize age spots and prevent new ones from forming. Phyllis A. Balch, in “Prescription for Nutritional Healing,” explains that a deficiency in vitamin E can contribute to the accumulation of free radicals in your skin cells, which in turn contributes to the formation of age spots. She says that vitamin E may help to combat cellular aging by protecting the membranes of your cells. Vitamin E may also help to strengthen your body’s overall circulation and, thereby, help to prevent the accumulation of harmful toxins in your cells. Vitamin E may also extend the life of red blood cells, which serve the vital function of transporting oxygen throughout your body. Balch recommends consuming 200 IU of vitamin E in d-alpha tocopherol form every day for best results.
Beta-carotene supplements may help to reduce the appearance of age spots and guard against new ones developing. Robert Rister, in “Healing Without Medication: A Comprehensive Guide to the Complementary Techniques Anyone Can Use to Achieve Real Healing,” explains that beta-carotene can help to minimize your skin’s sensitivity to sunlight, thereby reducing the potential for tissue damage and age spot formation. Beta-carotene may also help to reduce the appearance of sun damage on your skin, both in the form of age spots and wrinkles. Rister says, though, that beta-carotene supplements need to be consumed for a minimum of four to six months before you will begin to experience any increased tolerance for sunlight. He recommends consuming 25 milligrams of beta-carotene daily for the best results.
Vitamin C, a strong antioxidant, may be able to help lessen age spots and other signs of free radical damage to your skin. Rister says that vitamin C may provide powerful protection against potentially damaging UVA and UVB rays. While you may need to wait at least three to six months to see results, Rister explains, vitamin C can help to improve the cosmetic appearance and overall health of your skin. He notes that “age spots may take as long as a year to disappear and you will need to protect your skin from the sun to keep them from reappearing.” To help remove age spots, Rister recommends consuming 2,000 milligrams of vitamin C per day in supplement form for the best results.
- “Prescription for Nutritional Healing”; Phyllis A. Balch; 2006
- “Healing Without Medication: A Comprehensive Guide to the Complementary Techniques Anyone Can Use to Achieve Real Healing”; Robert Rister; 2003