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Melasma (Facial Pigmentation) -Roger Mason
Melasma pigmentation generally only affects the face and neck, where the skin is exposed to the sun. Sunlight is terribly reactive. Melasma (aka chloasma) patients are about 94% female, and only about 6% male. This tells you a lot right there, since women are far more hormonally affected than men. This is an international issue, and affects people of all races. Dark facial pigmentation often affects 50 to 70% of pregnant women in some countries. Fortunately, this usually disappears after they give birth. This tells you even more, since hormones change dramatically during, and after, pregnancy. For many women, however, the dark spots are permanent and psychologically debilitating. This is basically due to hormone imbalance. The cure is diet, lifestyle, and natural hormone balance. The real answer is internal, not topical. Read the article Balance Your Hormones. Read the book Natural Health for Women.
The most important thing to understand is the cure is internal, not external. You are never going to cure this with Magic Creams, Magic Lotions, or Magic Laser Treatments. The real cure is diet, lifestyle, and hormone balance. Holistic whole body health always treats the cause, and not the symptom. Think whole body health, and not “skin disease”. Read the article Seven Steps to Natural Health:
*Diet is everything. Diet cures disease; an American macrobiotic diet.
*Hormone balance is the basic issue with skin pigmentation disorders.
*Proven supplements strengthen the entire body
*All Rx drugs must be stopped with rare exceptions (e.g. temporary antibiotics).
*Bad habits like alcohol must be ended to be healthy.
*Weekly fasting is a powerful tool to get and stay well.
*Everyone needs to exercise.
Nearly always, these poor, desperate women run to the doctor, and throw money at them for Magic Creams, Magic Drugs, and even dangerous Magic Laser Treatments. They attack the symptom, and ignore the cause. None of these work, and nearly all of them have serious side effects. Doctors can do nothing for you here. Think whole body health and not "skin".
Melasma has been clearly associated with birth control pills, pregnancy, HRT (using Premarin®), and toxic oral progestins such as Provera® and Megace® (which are not real progesterone at all). Real, natural progesterone should be used transdermally. The medical insanity includes hydroquinone, Retin-A®, tramexamic acid, azelaic acid, kojic acid, magnesium, mulberry, zinc, fluocinolone, ellagic acid, arbutin, soy isoflavones, and vita-min C creams. Various dangerous laser treatments are available. Also oral tramexanic acid. These only make you worse in the end, and ruin your skin.
During pregnancy, estradiol, estrone, estriol and progesterone levels rise dramatically. Estriol and progesterone are NOT the cause of melasma at all. Rising levels of estradiol and estrone are. Synthetic progestins in HRT, and The Pill, are clearly associated with melasma, but not real progesterone. Many doctors will actually tell you toxic progestins are "progesterone". High estradiol and estrone levels are a major cause, along with the toxic synthetic ethinyl estradiol in The Pill.
Thyroid disorders are also clearly associated with skin pigmentation. Read the article Thyroid Balance. Your free T3 and T4 must be midrange, and not merely “in range” (e.g. 2.0 to 4.4 would be 3.2 midrange). Most doctors are not aware of this. You can test your free T3 and T4 at internet labs like www.healthcheckusa.com for $105 without a doctor. We have the ZRT thyroid kits as well. Hypothyroidism is common in melasma, especially among people over 40.
Melasma is clearly associated with polycystic ovaries. Here the ovaries have multiple small cysts. Read the article Polycystic Ovaries (PCOS). Two thirds of women with melasma have PCOS. Cure your PCOS and you go a long way to curing your melasma. The hallmarks of PCOS are high testosterone, hirstutism (facial hair), obesity, and insulin resistance. These are the classic signs PCOS. Get a cheap, safe, effective sonogram to see if you have multiple ovary cysts. Never get x-rays, when you can use sonograms and MRIs. Just get a sonogram to diagnose PCOS. Hyper testosterone levels can only be low-ered by diet, lifestyle, and balancing your other hormones. Insulin resistance means your body no longer responds to normal insulin levels, so it makes excessive amounts. This is caused mainly by the inordinate amount of sugars we eat. Read the article Sugar is Sugar, and the book The Natural Diabetes Cure to cure insulin resistance.
Women should, therefore, test their DHEA and free testosterone levels. They also need to test estradiol, estrone, and estriol levels. Men don't need to do estriol. You can test these hormones easily and inexpensively with saliva test kits (like those made by ZRT). Wo-men over 40 can use 25 mg of pregnenolone, and 1.5 mg (half tablets) of melatonin, as well as natural progesterone cream. Prolactin, LH, FSH, and estrogen metabolites are what they are, and do not need to be tested. Yes, high prolactin levels are clearly associated, but you cannot lower this with drugs. Only diet and lifestyle will lower excessive levels of these hormones. Men over 40 can use 50 mg of pregnenolone and 3 mg of melatonin. You want low normal estradiol and estrone levels, and high normal estriol levels. Just use natural progesterone cream, per your menstrual status, without testing. This is especially important for women over 40. Men use small amounts (i.e. 1/8th tea-spoon) of progesterone daily.
Diet is central here. Read the book Macrobiotics for Everyone. You must eat a whole grain based American macrobiotic diet. This means whole grains, beans and legumes, most vegetables, only 10% fruits, and only 10% seafood, plus healthy soups and salads. If you are a vegan, just omit the seafood. No dairy foods, meat, eggs, or poultry. No night-shade vegetables (tomatoes, potatoes, peppers, and eggplants). No sweets or desserts.
There are 20 proven supplements for people over 40. Those under 40 would still want to take all of these for a year, or until they are cured. This includes CoQ10 100 mg, beta glucan 400 mg, vitamins, minerals, carnosine 500 mg, DIM 200 mg, lipoic acid 400 mg, vitamin D 400 to 800 IU, vitamin E 200 IU, beta carotene 10,000 IU, flax oil (rather than fish oil) 1,000 mg, FOS 500 mg, good acidophilus 6 billion units, glutamine 500 mg, PS 100 mg, NAC 600 mg, glucosamine 500 mg, soy isoflavones 40 mg, quercetin 100 mg, beta-sitosterol 300 mg, and ALC 500 mg. Read the article Serious Supplement Program.
Those under 40 should read my booklet Supplements for Younger People. All the above supplements are "endogenous", and found in our everyday food and/or our bodies. Minerals are vital here. Mineral deficiency is a cause of every known illness. Take All Your Minerals® with the 17 elements you need in the proper doses. Read the booklet The Minerals You Need.
You simply cannot take any Rx drug, with the exception of insulin for type 1 diabetes, temporary antibiotics for an infection, and temporary pain medication for injury. The most commonly prescribed drugs in America are for pain (hydrocodone is #1), cholesterol (statins), diabetes, infections, stomach acid, blood pressure, and depression. You cannot poison your way to health. There is a natural answer for all your illnesses. Epi-leptic drugs are especially known to cause skin pigmentation. You must get off all pre-scription drugs, especially ones like Premarin®, progestins, birth control pills, and the anti-depressant and anti-anxiety drugs. Anti-depressant and anti-anxiety drug use is an epidemic with American women.
You need to realize no doctor on earth can help you. No drug, cream, or laser treatment is going to cure this. In fact, these things will just make your skin worse. The cure is internal, not external. Deal with the cause, and not the outward symptom. Think holistic, whole body health, and not “skin pigmentation”. Men can follow this same basic program, (but do not need to test their estriol levels). People with vitiligo and other skin pigmentation problems can also use this program. Do the Seven Steps faithfully and you'll get well.
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