What are liver spots?
Liver spots are medically termed ‘Lentigos” and also known as age spots. They are sharply defined light brown to black flat patches of skin that appear on the face, back of the hands and other areas of the body; they look somewhat like a large freckle. They vary in size.
Who is most at risk of developing these spots?
The spots most commonly develop in people of middle age and older. They are more common in people who have spent a lot of time in the sun.
What causes liver spots?
The spots are brought out by exposure to the sun. People with liver dysfunction may form liver spots. The color is due to pigments within the epidermis (top skin layer) cells.
Many people have a hereditary predisposition to develop liver spots. Free radicals are unstable molecules in the body that start a domino type effect leading to damage of cellular components such as DNA. Over time this can lead to many conditions attributable to cellular damage such as skin conditions including liver spots.
What can be done about these liver spots?
As sun exposure plays a role in the development of liver spots, it is advisable to avoid excessive exposure to the sun and becoming sunburnt. Cover up when outside and use a good quality sunscreen.
Improving the liver function is important to prevent and manage skin conditions of any description including liver spots, as the liver is the major filter of the blood, clearing it of toxins that can build up in the system and create free radicals which promote cell damage in the skin.
The key to keeping free radical production to a minimum is to consume foods and supplements rich in “antioxidants”. These are molecules that in effect put a halt on the destructive ‘domino’ effect of the free radicals.
Are these liver spots dangerous?
These lesions are classed as ‘benign” or non cancerous. They are generally harmless and painless. The main effect is cosmetic – this may cause some distress. Occasionally a person may develop ‘keratosis’ which looks very similar to a liver spot. Keratosis is a scaly red lesion. It is recommended that all people with dark freckles, moles or liver spots should have a skin examination yearly.
The recommended juices from Dr Cabot’s Raw Juices Can Save Your Life book are:
- “Skin Problems Juice” on p 131
- “Liver Cleansing” or Liver tonic” juices on p116
Supplements to Support Liver Function
A specific liver tonic which contains a high dose of the herb Milk Thistle with a high standardized concentration of the active ingredient silymarin. This liver tonic would also contain additional supporting nutrients such as amino acids, vitamins and minerals.
Selenomune contains 200 mcg of organic selenium combined with high doses of other immune boosting minerals per capsule.
MSM Plus Vitamin C powder
MSM (Methyl-Sulphonyl-Methane) is an organic form of the mineral sulphur. Sulphur is a vital component of healthy bile. Sulphur is needed to produce the powerful liver antioxidant called glutathione. Vitamin C will neutralize free radicals generated during the phase 1 detoxification pathway in the liver. Toxic chemicals are far less dangerous if there is plenty of vitamin C in the liver.
Natural Vitamin E
Vitamin E is required to protect cell membranes from free radical damage and may reduce the formation of liver spots in the skin. Make sure you use vitamin E supplements which are natural (d-alpha-tocopherol); synthetic forms (dl-alpha-tocopherol) are derived from petrochemicals and are not well utilised by the body.
Other supplements that may assist
- Hair, skin and nail supplementA formula containing nutrients specifically to promote the health of the hair, skin and nails. Ingredients include: Biotin for strong nails, folic acid, Inositol, Siberian ginseng to promote circulation to the hair and skin.
Traditionally treatments – laser surgery, or destruction with mild acid solutions or freezing the lesion – this would cause some damage to the surrounding skin. Modern use of lasers can effectively remove the spots without damaging the surrounding skin. Lasers work to selectively remove the pigment containing cells of each lesion. They require no anesthesia.
Dear Dr Cabot,
I am 56 years old and went through menopause 4 years ago. My biggest problem is that I am developing brown blotches on my face and hands, which is disappointing as I have always used a sun block and good quality creams. I am also a little fat around my middle and feel nauseated in the mornings or if I eat rich foods. My doctor told me that these symptoms were due to menopause and getting older. Indeed he called my brown spots and blotches “cemetery flowers ” which horrified me. Please help me as I am losing my self-esteem and I did not think menopause caused these problems. I certainly do not feel like an old lady !
Well perhaps you should suggest to you doctor that he should take a course in how to improve his bedside manner ! You are correct in saying that menopause does not cause these problems and indeed you are complaining of symptoms of a dysfunctional liver. Laser therapy can reduce them, as can special creams containing fruit acids and/or retinoic acid. You should consult a top plastic surgeon about the best brands of these creams. Most importantly you should concentrate on preventing more of these spots/blotches from coming which means we will need to improve your liver function. Once we cleanse and heal the liver, one could say rejuvenate the liver, then your skin will be rejuvenated and the brown spots should gradually fade and stop developing.
|Livatone Liver Tonic 240 Capsules |
|$40.00||+ Add to Cart|
|Vitamin E Natural Form 90 Softgels |
|$17.00||+ Add to Cart|
|Raw Juices Can Save Your Life |
|$15.00||+ Add to Cart|
|The Healthy Liver and Bowel Book |
|$20.00||+ Add to Cart|
|Hair Skin & Nails Food 90 Capsules |
|$20.00||+ Add to Cart|
|Livatone Liver Tonic 120 Capsules |
|$25.00||+ Add to Cart|
|Selenomune Designer Energy 100 Capsules |
|$26.00||+ Add to Cart|
|MSM Plus Vitamin C Powder 100 Grams |
|$20.00||+ Add to Cart|
These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA and are not intended to diagnose, treat or cure any diseases.