We live in confusing times surrounding skin colour and an obsessive need to interfere with it. There has been an uptick in the efforts of many misguided people to bleach their skin, ridding themselves of the natural advantage that was bestowed on them. To this effect, it is important to be armed with information on the benefits of melanin-rich skin and why it is necessary to preserve it.
Premium Protection Against The Effects of Ultraviolet Radiation
Melanin is the pigment produced by cells known as melanocytes that give colour to the skin, hair and eyes. It is more concentrated in the tissues of people who inhabit areas nearer to the equator. This is because sunlight is more concentrated in those areas and melanin is the body’s natural sunscreen that protects cells from overexposure and damage by UV rays. Exposure to the sun has the potential to cause premature ageing of the skin, as well as various skin cancers. Your ability to withstand the potentially damaging effects of the sun’s ultraviolet radiation depends on the amount of melanin in your skin. It is so important that even in light-skinned people, overexposure to the sun can force the body to produce more melanin which leads to what we know as tanning. If it’s that important, why get rid of yours? (Also Read: Top Tips For Caring For Your Skin)
Neutralizes Harmful Effects of Other Dangerous Radiation
Melanin can absorb a great amount of energy and yet not produce a lot of heat after absorption. This is because it can transform harmful energy into useful energy. According to dermatologist and dermatopathologist Dr Leon Edelstein, director of the National American West Skin Pathology Consultation Service, melanin can absorb large amounts of all kinds of energy including energy from sunlight, x-ray machines, and energy formed during the metabolism of cells. It is believed that melanin-rich skin can neutralize the potentially harmful effects of these energies.
It Causes Younger-Looking Skin
Exposure to the sun can cause premature ageing of the skin. People with melanin-rich skin are less likely to exhibit signs of ageing. This phenomenon is popularly known as “Black don’t Crack”. The increased melanin protects those who have it from short-term damage from the sun, as well as the long-term signs of ageing, such as age spots, deep wrinkles and rough texture.
Melanin Aids In Human Reproduction
Melanin protects from DNA damage and absorbs the right amounts of UV radiation needed by the body. Importantly, it also protects against folate depletion. Folate is a water-soluble vitamin B complex which naturally occurs in green, leafy vegetables, whole grains, and citrus fruits. Women need folate to maintain healthy eggs. It is also aids proper implantation of eggs and the normal development of placenta after fertilization. On the other hand, Folate is needed for normal sperm production in men. Additionally, folate is essential for fetal growth, organ development, and neural tube development. Intense UltraViolet Radiation usually damages Folate and affects optimum conditions for reproduction. Interestingly, dark-skinned women suffer the lowest level of neural tube defects.
Dampens the effect of Aging on Sense Organs
Melanin helps to guard against macular degeneration in the eyes caused by ageing. It also plays a major role in how the body removes harmful chemical compounds caused by damage to the hair cells in the inner ear. As a result, it reduces damage to hearing as dark-skinned people grow older.