Vitiligo is an autoimmune condition, which means our autoimmune system attacks the melanin pigment (Which gives our skin its colour), as a consequence, the melanin ceases to produce the pigmentation. The skin becomes pale in patches and the condition of the patient’s skin gets worse over time. There is no definite cure for vitiligo and there is no official diet, but doctors have some positive research results, which give hope to the patients. We have to understand what is vitiligo diet and how does it help to treat vitiligo.
We are what we eat. If such serious health issues like vitiligo affect your life, you should follow the diet which will stop the disorder from spreading, and maybe the diet will even reverse the effects. Vitiligo can be a cause for public embarrassment also. Antioxidants, phytochemicals, and beta-carotene should be the prime ingredients in a vitiligo diet. Some patients might face an aggravated expansion of vitiligo due to turmeric and citrus fruits, so if you are facing such problems, eliminate them from your diet.
What to eat?
The patient of vitiligo will need a diet full of nutrition and balance of protein, vitamins, and minerals.
A plant-based diet is a good approach to vitiligo. Potato, beetroot, carrots, cabbage, cauliflower, red chilli, and green beans are an excellent choice. These foods must be eaten as much as you can digest, don’t overeat. Maintain a balance in your diet.
Apricots, bananas, figs, mangoes, apples, and dates are the best fruits you can eat in vitiligo. These fruits are rich in antioxidants and phytochemicals. They must be consumed if you are showing the symptoms of vitiligo.
Only a little amount of dairy products should be in your diet. If your condition is severe, it is strictly recommended that you avoid dairy entirely.
Light cooked lean, white meat is suggested. Boiled chicken breast, eggs, and lean turkey are suggested for non-vegetarians. Lentils, kidney beans, chickpeas, and mushrooms are recommended for vegans.
The doctor will prescribe you supplements of protein, vitamin B-12, calcium, and minerals depending on your deficiencies.
Fruit juices, vegetable juice, and coconut water are recommended to consume in vitiligo. Do not drink them if you have difficulty in digesting.
Brown rice, quinoa, corn, white rice, couscous, and oats are suggested.
Herbs and spices
Black pepper, clove, coriander leaves, thyme, rosemary, basil, nutmeg, cardamom, and cinnamon are suitable for the vitiligo patient.
What not to eat?
When there is a list of what to eat, there is always a list of what not to eat. There are several foods that can aggravate the vitiligo, they are-
Onion, eggplant, green chilli, and garlic.
Pineapple, prune, peach, orange, lemon, gooseberry, watermelon, papaya, guava, melon, pear, grapes, and tamarind. These fruits are listed because they are rich in vitamin-C. Vitamin-C is known to hinder the production of pigmentation of our skin.
Fish, beef, and pork are a strict no in the case.
Curd, milk, and buttermilk are suggested to avoid. However, you can eat a little amount of dairy.
Soda, sugar-rich drinks, packaged fruit juices, and alcohol should be avoided, also vitamin-C fruit juices should also be avoided.
Turmeric is the only spice which should be avoided if you are suffering from vitiligo.
Other food items
Anything that contains preservatives like frozen meat, packaged food, deep-fried food, and canned food must be avoided. This kind of edibles is not made for long term consumption. Once in a while is okay, but they create an acidic environment in our guts, which allows diseases and disorders to grow.
Vitiligo can be mentally damaging, not in terms of chemical imbalances, but in terms of feeling unfit for a social occasion and the fear of acceptance from society. You need to keep yourself calm, be more accepting of yourself, and be stressfree. Stress is an enemy in vitiligo, it will harm your healing process.
Yoga, exercising, and jogging are good options for you. Spend 15 minutes in sunlight every day, it will surely help in the repigmentation of the skin. Sleep well and for 7-8 hours. You will need an adequate amount of sleep to maintain a healthy immune system.