What Your Skin Can Tell You About Your Health

Pale complexion? Sudden breakouts? Learn what causes common skin concerns -- and what to do (10 Photos)

Marissa Capodanno on Feb 19, 2012 at 12:04PM

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A Colorless Complexion

Source: Getty Images/Isabelle Rozenbaum

Pale skin can indicate anemia, explains Doris Day, a board-certified dermatologist in New York City. This occurs when the body lacks iron to make enough hemoglobin, a component of red blood cells that is responsible for transferring nourishing oxygen from the lungs to the rest of the body. So, what’s with the Snow White look? Less hemoglobin can literally make your skin look less pink. To find out what’s causing your fairness, see your family doctor, Dr. Day suggests. He or she can administer a simple blood test to check for anemia. An iron supplement is often prescribed to correct this condition.

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