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What Deficiency Causes Dark Eye Circles?

What Deficiency Causes Dark Eye Circles

Have you been struggling with dark circles not knowing why you have them? Engulfed in your daily problems, you often forget to eat a balanced diet and take better care of yourself. Sooner or later, this translates on your facade and – in most cases – it looks anything but appealing.

However, sometimes the dark circles in the eye area reappear even when you are well-rested and relaxed. If you are here to learn what deficiency causes dark eye circles, you have set your eyes on the right article. Stick on to get the answers to some burning questions regarding this condition.

Are Dark Circles Under Eyes a Sign of Illness?

For the most part, dark eye circles are an aesthetic problem rather than a medical concern. In case you don’t know, the periorbital veins (blood vessels) located under your eyes might show through the skin in certain cases such as seasonal allergies or inflammatory conditions. Not to mention, your complexion could react to some skincare products that you’ve recently used, especially if this is your first time applying said product.

In general, as you age, you lose fatty tissue around the eyes which creates hollowness and casts a shadow above the cheeks. This can give you that panda look you don’t want.

There are plenty of culprits here, from deficiencies to poor blood circulation. And we will talk about them in more detail so you get the gist of the matter and know what to do when it happens. Luckily, there are many types of dark eye circle treatments and options available, from medical procedures to home and DIY remedies that can be used. Which treatment method is appropriate depends on the cause and type of the dark circles.

One of the latest beauty tools for fighting under eye dark circles at Shens Clinic is Sunekos – an injectable that boosts the production of collagen and elastin.

What Deficiency Causes Dark Eye Circles on Skin?

mature woman wearing cooling blue gel eye mask dark eye circles

Vitamin deficiencies that are associated with dark circles include vitamins E, D, K vitamin, A, and B12. In addition to that, iron deficiency is also a root cause of dark circles. Let’s shed more light on the problem.

Apparently, deficiency in iron can be a culprit for those dark circles around your eyes; if it is accompanied by other symptoms, that is. When the body isn’t getting enough iron, it hampers the production of haemoglobin which is in charge of carrying oxygen across the tissues.

Deficiency of iron typically manifests itself as anaemia and people are often unaware of it. Symptoms include dizziness, fatigue, shortness of breath, pale skin, tongue soreness or swelling, crawling feeling in the legs, and irregular heartbeat. Patients may also experience strange cravings, weakness, headaches, and brittle nails. Due to the low oxygen supply and poor blood circulation, some have cold hands and feet.

As you may have noticed, one of the tell-tale signs is pale skin. It is especially obvious on the face where the skin is more delicate. The area around your eyes is even thinner, exhibiting the blood vessels from underneath with ease. This means that when the blood vessels change in colour, it becomes discernible on the skin around the eyes.

The root causes of iron deficiency anaemia are different factors such as imbalanced diet and improper iron intake, endometriosis, and internal bleeding. Sometimes none of these is the culprit. Patients may be getting enough iron from their diet but certain conditions like celiac disease may make it impossible to absorb the nutrients adequately. Intestinal surgery could have the same impact on the gut.

For professionals to determine whether someone is suffering from this common deficiency, they have to do a complete blood count which comprises the following components: haemoglobin, haematocrit, white blood cells (WBC), red blood cells (RBC), and platelets. Additional blood work might be ordered to identify the severity of the anaemia. For instance, ferritin levels, iron level in the blood, and RBC colour and size are great tests to do that.

If you suspect iron deficiency, you should schedule an appointment with your health care provider and bring up the topic. The problem can be prevented by eating a variety of foods, such as eggs, dried fruits, red meat and lean meat, squash seeds, beans, seafood, and leafy greens.

Iron supplements are available for those having to deal with a deficiency. Then again, you ought to speak to a professional on which product to take and when. You may have to test your iron levels every 2-3 months to see if the treatment is taking effect.

By fixing the problem, you will not only battle dark circles but also improve your overall health status.

Does Vitamin D Help Reduce Dark Circles under Eyes?

vitamin d

Although there is no scientific evidence that vitamin D can have a direct effect on the under-eye area, it is believed that puffy eyes and dark circles prevail in people deficient in vitamin D, particularly females aged 40+. As a matter of fact, a person may appear 4.7 years older than they really are because of that.

Vitamin D is a chief nutrient that the body cannot make on its own. Other than its functions as a vitamin, it acts as a hormone, which means it’s in charge of numerous processes. We rarely think about it because we know that we get it from the sun. That’s what we’ve been told for years.

However, you may want to update your knowledge. Some geographical areas tend to get less sun than others, which makes sun exposure short-lived and insufficient. Adding the fact that we like to shield from the harmful ultraviolet rays by slathering on sunscreen, we get a recipe for vitamin D deficiency.

Other sources of vitamin D are red meat, egg yolks, oily fish, fortified cereals, and liver.

Vitamin K Deficiency

vitamin k skin care supplements

What’s the deal with vitamin K? Now, there is vitamin K1, which regulates blood coagulation (blood clotting), and there is also vitamin K2, which serves to transport calcium to the right places and control its levels. This one is essential when it comes to proper vitamin D absorption.

Foods rich in vitamin K are tomatoes, cauliflower, turnip greens, and pomegranate. As far as external application is concerned, a topical cream with vitamin K can do wonders on the blood vessels around the eyes.

It goes without saying, blood work will help you check your vitamins D2 and D3 levels and act accordingly. You can take supplements from any drugstore. Just keep in mind that the vitamin is fat-soluble which means you have to ingest some kind of fat alongside supplementing so it can absorb more easily. Vitamin K is fat-soluble as well.

What About Vitamin B12 Deficiency and Dark under Eye Circles?

The last vitamin to talk about is B12. It is strongly related to iron and the production of red blood cells. When B12 levels are low, iron deficiency is likely to happen. B12 also helps to make bone marrow. As a whole, B vitamins are crucial for metabolism and energy production.

Ironically, if lacking in the body, they can disrupt sleep patterns, which may aggravate dark circles and make your skin dull. They are found in foods like meat, liver, milk, green leafy vegetables, tomatoes, eggs, nuts, and seafood.

What Vitamin is Good for Dark Circles Under Eyes?

The short answer is vitamin E and A. The former a group of vitamins that contain antioxidant effects and is beneficial to the skin. There is no way you haven’t heard of its ability to fight off free radicals, the ones that make us get sick and age faster. Vitamin E oil is available in drugstores in various concentrations and can be applied directly to the under-eye area. Add a few drops of the contents on the skin each night before going to bed. Massage it gently using circular motions and leave it like that overnight.

As we already mentioned before, vitamin E deficiency can play a direct role to the way your complexion appears. Hence, it makes sense to use it to regain your fresh look.

Please note that vitamin E oil acts externally whereas vitamin E supplements are ingested and work on the inside. While the pill form has loads of benefits to eye health and the overall function of the immune system, it is not good for everyone and should be discussed with certified physicians.

Now, about vitamin A. It has been the talk of the town for decades how vitamin A can affect the signs of ageing around the eyes. Topical creams containing said nutrient are known as retinoids and can work wonders on the area around the eyes. They not only diminish the appearance of dark circles but skyrocket collagen production.

Foods that offer a good intake of vitamin A include cheese, papaya, carrots, eggs, and sweet potato.

Does Vitamin C Remove Dark Circles Under Eyes?

woman applying vitamin c cream on face

It depends on the cause of the dark under eye circles. If hyperpigmentation is at play, vitamin C, having brightening properties, can help even out the tone and diminish dark spots and dullness.

It is no secret that vitamin C boasts antioxidant properties. When applied to the skin, it acts as an environmental shield against free radicals and oxidative damage which tend to create wrinkles and hyperpigmentation. It is worth mentioning that the formula of the beauty product you go with is of great importance and should be fully inspected before you reach for your debit card.

Some formulas will become less efficacious with time, compromising the stability and superpowers of vitamin C. This is why you should consult a dermatologist or another specialist on the product that will do the trick. You can book a consultation with us and to further discuss causes and potential treatment options.

There are different eye creams on the market loaded with vitamin C and other nutrients to help with discolouration and puffiness. They can help reduce dark circle appearance. Trying every vitamin C brand out there can be detrimental to your budget, that’s why you have to be smart about it. Your best bet is to discuss your needs with a medical professional; someone who knows what they are doing. They will test your skin to determine what nutrients it is lacking in.

Another thing to remember is that it takes at least three months before an eye cream or serum with vitamin C really works its magic, so you should be patient if you want to yield results. It’s okay if the product doesn’t work right off the bat. These things take time and it’s more than vital to be consistent with your skincare routine.

Now, it doesn’t hurt to incorporate more vitamin C in your diet as well. It will add to a healthy circulatory system. Foods that are naturally abundant in the nutrient are parsley, tomatoes, citrus fruits, strawberries, Brussel sprouts, green peppers, and other food.

What Foods Cause Dark Circles the Under Eyes?

Food itself factors in as one of the root causes of dark circles. Certain foods give rise to allergic reactions which may lead to dark circles under the eyes in some individuals. The list includes peanuts, egg whites, shellfish, sugar, chocolate, peas, yeast, wheat, soy, mustard, and citrus fruit but that’s not a definitive list. Anyone can develop an allergic reaction to an ingredient or an environmental factor at any time. Think pollen, dander, dust, and mould, etc.

Other Possible Causes of Dark under Eye Circles You Should not Ignore

  • Hereditary – dark circles under the eyes may be passed on from generation to generation along with eye bags
  • Tiredness and lack of sleep – everybody knows that lack of sleep can be detrimental to human beings and it usually translates more on the eye skin than anywhere else in the body
  • Eczema – eczema may cause itching, swelling, and scaling on the skin; sometimes it may give rise to dark under eye circles
  • Allergies – allergies are known to cause dark circles in addition to congestion and other problems in the upper body
  • Stress – stress can affect every single inch of your body but it often shows on your face the most; combined with lack of sleep, it has a huge impact on the way you look; when you lower your stress levels to a minimum, you can get rid of dark circles

Is Coffee Good for Dark Circles under the Eyes?

Yes, caffeine can get rid of dark circles due to its rich antioxidant activity. It can freshen and tighten the skin if used directly on the under-eye area (and everywhere for that matter). Truth is, coffee can be a great body scrub that will get rid of dead cells for you. However, you should not rely on caffeine solely to deal with dark eye circles.

How Can I Remove Dark Circles Permanently?

Dermal fillers to reduce dark circles under your eyes.

Dermal fillers work best for patients who have sunken eyes. It aims to fill in the hollow areas above the cheeks with a special liquid (hyaluronic acid), which ultimately fixes the dark shadow that is cast over the area. Many people get sunken eyes as they age. When coupled with bad dietary habits and choices, this can create the so-called “panda eyes” that we all dread so much.

Cocktail of amino acids and hyaluronic acid for lessened appearance of dark circles under your eyes.

Another injectable that recently hit the market counts on a mixture of substances that occur naturally in the body but get lost with ageing. It sends amino acids and hyaluronic acid straight into the areas where it is lacking.

With just a few insertions of a thin needle, the liquid reaches the dermis and works its magic. What is different to this treatment is that it has the capacity to regenerate the Extra Cellular Matrix (ECM) of the skin, which helps to bind everything together and provide better communication on a cellular level. It also ups collagen production and improves elasticity. Last but not least, it enhances blood circulation.

Laser treatments to get rid of dark circles.

Modern technologies make it possible to use lasers on the skin without damaging the healthy tissue. It works by targeting the pigment and shattering it into small pieces which are then handled by the waste system of the body.

In other words, concentrated beams of light and heat are directed at the desired areas. They damage the bad cells, stimulating the skin to begin regenerating. Blood circulation improves too. It takes multiple treatments to get satisfactory results and they should be spaced out in time.

Final Thoughts on How to Reduce Dark Circles under Your Eyes

patches anti dark circles

If you are looking for home remedies to fight dark circles, you should know that they do not have long-term effects and may not work on you. There are various options, from retinoid creams (high in vitamin A) to cold compresses and a few extra pillows when going to sleep. Watching your diet and getting enough beauty sleep will also help to wake up fresh and good-looking. Of course, food old concealer and overall makeup can make the dark circles disappear for the time being.

However, if your dark circles persist and you don’t know why, it is best to seek medical attention. A dermatologist or a specialist like Dr Shens will do their best to rule out any deficiency and start you on the right treatment. Make sure to go to the right person. There are a number of ways to find out if a doctor is worth the time and effort.

You may have to add some supplements to your diet like the aforementioned vitamin C, vitamin K, vitamin E, vitamin D, vitamin B12, and iron. And perhaps stack up on topical creams that boast said nutrients. Or just change your diet to include healthier food rich in vitamin and minerals. Or you will be advised to chill out, minimise tiredness, and take better care of your skin. They may prescribe medications to treat a condition that is causing dark under eye circles.

Once you set foot at the clinic, the options are endless. All you have to do is follow the specialist’s advice and be disciplined.

At the end of the day, if you aspire to get rid of dark circles, you have to take control of the situation.

Shens Clinic, 3 Killiney Road, Winsland House 1, #09-08, Singapore 239519

Monday – Friday: 09:00am – 06:00pm
Saturday: 09:00am – 02:00pm
Sun and PH: Closed

(Strictly by appointment only)

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