Any summer day on our kitespot, it is frequent to see kiter fellows and colleagues, often, without a t-shirt, a neoprene or a lycra, only with shorts and not even a helmet or a hat.
It is well known the negative effects that UV and other harmful sun rays can have over our skin.
Kitesurfing in Mallorca supposes an extraordinary sun exposition. We should preferably wear a lycra and a hat and don’t let our skin exposed to the sun but by short time periods.
How do we get sun tanned
Melanin is the pigment of human skin, which is responsible of colour of the eyes and hair, but melanin has other effect in our bodies, by instance when we are tanning, this is the result of an increased melanin production.
It is useful to know these processes occurring in order to reduce or maintain some control over the production of melanin in our skin.
Melanocyte and melanosomes contain tyrosinase cells which, when stimulated by chemicals or UV rays, the production and distribution of melanin pigment is stimulated. The surge of melanin can cause hyperpigmentation, freckles, marks and age spots. Some vitamins can help reduce levels of melanin in the body, lighten the tone and prevent skin problems.
The process of formation of melanin, is called melanogenesis, and occurs in the deeper layer of the epidermis and the matrix cells of the hair follicle. Melanin production is stimulated by DNA damage induced by radiation ultravioleta. The chemical properties of the melanin makes it very efficient photo resistent. Melanin absorbs the harmful ultraviolet radiation. This property enables melanin to disspell most of the absorbed radiation into heat ,therefore preventing damage our DNA.
VITAMINES, SUN AND KITESURFING
Vitamin C is known as ascorbic acid and it is a water soluble vitamin which has anti-oxidant properties. When applied topically it seeps deep into the skin where it affects the melanin producing cells and inhibits their production.
When melanocytes are exposed to UV, this produces free radicals but vitamin C it is a powerful antioxidant that neutralizes harmful free radicals reducing melanin formation. We must take vitamin C along with our diet. Citrus fruits, grapes, strawberries, peppers and dark green vegetableswhich contain vitamin C and they must be taken every day.
Vitamin A is also known as retinol. Retin-A derivative thereof it is widely
used in the manufacture of creams and lotions. Vitamin A stimulates the growth of epidermal cells, therefore, hyper pigmented skin it is replaced by new skin cells. Regular use of cream Retin-A type containing retinol keeps the skin bright and clear because it destroys the accumulated melanin. Green vegetables, potatoes, carrots are rich in retinol.
Vitamin D is also known by the name vitamin-sun, it’s the only vitamin that the human body can produce when our skin is exposed to sunlight.
We can also find vitamine D in fortified cereals and dairy products, cod liver oil, eggs, soybeans and bluefish.
Though the excess of sun exposure may leave your skin badly damaged and with the years you may suffer a melanoma or have your skin with the same texture as a crocodile’s skin.
When our skin is exposed to sunlight, vitamin K can also help the negative effects caused by excessive melanin production. Vitamin K has mainly functions related to blood clotting. The healing properties for skin and anticoagulants are great benefits that has this essential vitamin in our body.
On the market, you can find various creams and gels with a component of this vitamin. Tranquilizers are used for skin treatments, decongesting and relieving skin redness. Also to avoid skin irritation, naturally revitalizes, restoring a healthy, full of shine and hydration aspect and as well facilitates the absorption of vitamin C which strengthen our bones.
Vitamin E is perhaps the best vitamin for all types of skin problems.
Although vitamin E does not have a direct role in inhibiting the production of melanin. It contains a pigment that helps fight melanin and recover from the effects of free radicals which accelerate skin problems, so it is convenient to take internally vitamin E. This helps our cells and our skin also rejuvenates. The best way to have vitamine E is to opt for vitamin E capsules. We must also consume foods such as nuts, oily fish and spinach.
As we have seen, our nutrition and especially the vitamines have a remarkable effect in the health not only on our bodies but also on our skin. Protect your skin well always before a kitesurfing session and eat healthy.
This is the best way to practice our sport, kitesurf for many years and free of skin problems.
SOME INTERESTING LINKS
http://www.news-medical.net/health/What-is-Melanin.aspx CLICK HERE
MELANIN and its Protective Role CLICK HERE