Health and Fitness

Health Alert: What Those Dark Spots on Your Face and Neck Could Mean

Last week I noticed a few comments on my “Coming Clean” video indicating that some of the women expressing worry when I mentioned that the dark spots some black women have on their face, neck and underarms could indicate insulin resistance and a precursor to diabetes. The condition is called Acanthosis nigricans. Here’s what it looks like:




What it means:

Acanthosis nigricans is a skin condition characterized by areas of dark, velvety discoloration in body folds and creases. The affected skin can become thickened. Most often, acanthosis nigricans affects your armpits, groin and neck.

The skin changes of acanthosis nigricans (ak-an-THOE-sis NIE-grih-kuns) typically occur in people who are obese or have diabetes. Children who develop the condition are at higher risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Rarely, acanthosis nigricans can be a warning sign of a cancerous tumor in an internal organ, such as the stomach or liver.

No specific treatment is available for acanthosis nigricans. Treatment of underlying conditions may restore some of the normal color and texture to affected areas of skin. [SOURCE]

 Did you read that? No amount of brightening skin care creams will work. You must address the underlining issue–which is a marked change in diet that doesn’t cause huge swings and high and lows of your blood sugar. It also means that you have to make a commitment to yourself to get to a healthy weight and embrace exercise. And finally, you need to make a commitment to eliminate stressors and understand the triggers that cause overeating.
I’ve spent the better portion of my adult life committed to fighting this disease, which runs in my family. My grandmother had to get a leg amputation before the disease caused her heart to fail. My mother has diabetes too, and her daily regimen of insulin shots and voluminous doctors appointments to monitor how the disease is slowly causing her organs to fail, along with her complete acceptance and lack of desire to fight it naturally has inspired me to go the other way. What I’m about to advise you is the very thing I’m doing myself, and I know for a fact that it works.
How to Start?
Going to the gym can be tough and even intimidating, as you’re often surrounded by gym rats with 5% body fat. It’s also hard not to compare yourself to others, which could lead to you being discouraged. I recommend you keep that $25 a month and less than half that and use fitness sites like Yoga Download. I’m a member, and it’s so comprehensive I was able to quit my $120 a month membership at the studio and get more class choices, instruction and variety than I’d ever had before. What’s also great about Yoga Download is that it’s completely customizable based on skill level, yoga category, body focus, and time. It even has a section strictly for mediation and breathing exercises, which can help you on your fitness journey by reducing your stress level on a biochemical level. Here’s a preview:

Membership starts as low as $10, and trust me, it's the best ten you'll spend on a investment as priceless as your health. Follow this link to get 50% off monthly.

Explore Paleo

Many of my long time readers know that I follow a mostly paleo diet, which means I stay away from rice, potatoes, white processed sugars, and wheat. I opted for this type of diet because it was easy for me to follow, and is conducive with staving off diabetes. Following a paleo diet can be confusing, especially when you start trying to shop for the foods at the grocery store. The first shock will be the realization that the majority of convenience foods are laden with sugar and wheat, so it's no surprise that so many of us have sugar and bread addictions. Our bodies are used to a cheap source of energy that will eventually be our undoing. That's why I really like this idea of Paleo Plan, a site that produces meal plans, e-books, and workout programs to help you simplify the process and make the change less intimidating. Click here to sign up for the 14-day free trial. It's free. What do you have to lose, except some extra weight and your dependence on poison sugar? Click here for the free sign up.


Go (Garden) Green

Gardening is a tremendous stress reliever and does wonders to encourage you to eat live, healthy foods and get your sugar and carbohydrate sources naturally. And you don't need a lot of space to grow greens and sprouts, which you can put into fresh juices and green and berry smoothies, which gives you HEALTHY and SUSTAINABLE energy. It's spring, so there's no excuse not to go to your local nursery and pick up some kale, spinach, tomato plants, and salad greens.

[caption id="attachment_40255" align="aligncenter" width="750"]DSC09207 My garden[/caption]

I use a combination of these greens to make a smoothie every morning and add protein powder and green supplements. I use gluten free, organic, and non-GMO products like Aloha. According to the company, "ALOHA Protein is is made with nutrient-rich protein from plants, including hemp seeds, pumpkin seeds, and peas. We’ve left out “natural” or artificial flavors and articficial colors, sweeteners, or fillers. It’s just clean, pure protein." Click this link for a free month of the protein powder of your choice. Aloha also offers healthful teas, green powders, snacks and vitamins.

Shop ALOHA Online

So let me hear it--are you ready to take charge of your health, mind and spirit?

Follow Christelyn on Instagram and Twitter, and subscribe to our YouTube channel. And if you want to be a little more about this online dating thing, InterracialDatingCentral is the official dating site for this blog.