Why do dark-skinned people have light feet and palms

In all people who belong to the Negroid race, the skin has a dark color. But despite this, they have one thing in common with the representatives of the Caucasian race – the skin on the feet and hands is light. Why didn’t the skin darken in these areas during the entire evolution? The question is quite interesting and requires an appeal to history. Why do dark-skinned people have light feet and palms

Why do dark-skinned people have light feet and palms

Why do Africans have a different skin color?


According to anthropological evidence, humanity has been divided into Negroids and Caucasians too long. Since then, at least one hundred thousand years have passed. As for the Mongoloid race, it appeared approximately forty-five to sixty thousand years ago. The evolution of races occurred independently of one another, according to the theory of polycentrism. That is, representatives of the Caucasoid branch were in Europe, the Negroids were on African lands, and the Mongoloids settled Asia. If we consider the theory of monocentrism, then the process of evolution proceeded at the same time, while the races formed approximately in the interval from twenty-five to thirty thousand years ago.


Nature herself took care of the African population and endowed it with dark-colored skin. This is the result of evolution, which protects the human body from radiation emitted by the sun. The latter in this part of the globe is much larger than in the regions located in the northern part.


The skin of the African population differs from the integument of Europeans by the presence of a special pigment called eumelanin. He is responsible for the color – black or brown (the intensity may be different). Although it is widely believed that melanin has a protective function and prevents overheating, this is not so. In fact, the situation is rather the opposite – more light is absorbed not in white but in black.


The main role of the pigment is to absorb UV radiation that is harmful to the human body. When penetrating into the deeper layers of the epidermis, ultraviolet rays give rise to the development of free radicals. These unstable molecular compounds have a destructive effect on healthy, normal cells. As a result, oncology can develop – skin cancer. Melanin reacts with these radicals and neutralizes their effect.


If you look, the owners of dark skin are not only those who live in Africa, but also Asians. Same in India, the sun is just as scorching as on African land. Often its indigenous people are much darker. The farther people live from the equator line, the lighter their skin integuments. By the way, the European population also produces pigment melanin. We know him for tanning in the summer. But in this case, the destruction of melanin occurs immediately after exposure to sunlight. Accordingly, the skin also gradually becomes lighter.

Why do all feet and palms have white, regardless of a person’s race?


Perhaps many of us have noticed that neither our feet nor our palms ever sunbathe, no matter how hard we try. This is again due to melanin, which is almost completely absent in these places among all inhabitants of the planet, without exception, in whatever part of the globe they did not live. For the body, the production of pigment is not only time-consuming, but also quite expensive. In the process of synthesis, tyrosine becomes dioxiphenylalanine, and then dioxiphenylalanine-chromium, which during the polymerization and goes into a state of melanin. It binds to protein and is deposited in granular form. The whole mechanism is described in order to show how many important, significant resources and substances our body spends on creating melanin. Well, since the feet and hands are least affected by the sun, And then the question arises, why does this not apply to the armpits?


After all, the rays of the sun get to this part of the body, too, not so often. There are scientists who believe that the pigment is absent in the palms and feet, not only due to saving resources, but also because the skin is much rougher here than in other places. Due to this, good protection against the harmful effects of ultraviolet radiation is already provided. As for the armpits, the skin on this part of the body is very delicate, but that’s not all. In this area there are lymph nodes, which makes the skin vulnerable, and therefore requiring additional protection. There is one more interesting fact. At birth, all people on the planet have fair skin. Parents with dark skin babies acquire this color in the first few hours after birth.


But there are albinos, who are much more difficult than other people. Due to the fact that the tyrosinase gene is mutated in them, melanin is not produced in the body. At the same time, it is absent not only in the skin, but also in the hair, eyes – everywhere. Albinos are very vulnerable to sunlight, but that’s not all. Very often they have problems with the skeletal system, vision and, naturally, skin. Such people live on average less than usual. If a child is born in an African family, somewhere in a forgotten village, then he is often harassed due to superstition.


One comment

  1. I believe that the terms in this article are not appropriate and generate huge generalisations for darker skinned people. Terms like ‘Negroids’ and ‘Mongoloids’ are harmful and offensive to the people implied as a part of these groups. Within the context of today’s society and the fact this article was published in 2020 with the heightened attention towards social issues, especially BLM, I would have expected this article to be edited with more sensitivity. Please would you either take this article down or edit it so that it isn’t proliferating offensive speech to more than the 23 thousand people who have already read this.


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