Skip to content

Dermatology Myths – Misconceptions about your skin

October 12, 2006

Facts are stubborn things; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations, or the dictates of our passions, they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence – John Adams

Myth: Consuming non-vegetarian food causes acne
This is absolutely untrue says Dr. Kaberi Som, Skin Specialist. She explains that ‘acne has a multi-factorial origin,’ and only a doctor can determine what the real causes are. However she advises against junk food as the skin needs proper nutrition to be healthy.

Myth: ‘Hot’ foods like mangoes trigger boils or skin infections
‘Boils are caused by bacteria,’ says Dr. Som. As bacteria multiply in hot humid climate which is the season of mangoes, they are often blamed for the infection.

Myth: Consuming milk or fish causes leukoderma or a calcium deficiency causes white patches on the face
Neither of this is true. ‘Leukoderma is a multi-factorial disease, and not related to food,’ says the doctor. And as for the white patches – they could be caused by ‘the wrong use or cosmetics, a sun allergy or even a superficial fungal infection.’

Myth: Leprosy is hereditary
‘Leprosy is caused by an organism and is thus an infection. If there is familial occurrence, it is due to close contact,’ clarifies Dr. Som.

Myth: Oil causes dandruff
Oil has nothing to do with it as dandruff is ‘caused by a yeast.’

Myth: Pulling out a gray hair causes ten to appear
This is baseless as ‘each hair root is separate.’

(Published in The Times of India, Mumbai. 2006)

Related Reading: Myths about our eyes
Myths about our ears

3 Comments leave one →
  1. December 19, 2006 12:08 am

    [Myth: ‘Hot’ foods like mangoes trigger boils or skin infections.

    ‘Boils are caused by bacteria,’ says Dr. Som. As bacteria multiply in hot humid climate which is the season of mangoes, they are often blamed for the infection]
    The concept of “hot” and “cold” foods is very scientific in ayurved. Infections are caused by bacteria or viruses, but certain eruptions on skin are very well caused by hormonal or other imbalances in the body. It is sad that ayurved is losing its importance in the very country where it was born.

  2. December 19, 2006 5:25 am

    Yes, there are many who believe that the ‘hot’ foods cause pimples etc. But unfortunately, there is weighty evidence to prove otherwise. That is what the doc is trying to explain. This is a myth that needs to be busted.
    Also, skin eruptions can have various causes, like say in Typhoid and as you say due to hormonal imbalances, but the doc is not talking about serious medical conditions here. She is just trying to say that mangoes and other ‘hot’
    foods do not cause boils or pimples.

  3. May 17, 2007 5:28 am

    I agree with Nita…..

    Hot food has NOTHING to do with pimples.

    My girlfriend is Hindi, my father is caribbean, my grandfather is Chinese and we all like and eat HOT food.

    None of us have pimples!

    Even my 2 1/2 year old daughter…

    PS. My girlfriend is called Nita also……😉

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: