Most of us have heard of acne and know how it looks. But do you REALLY know what it is? Acne is an inflammatory skin condition found mainly on the face but can also be found on the back, chest, and shoulders. The severity and progression of acne is determined by environmental exposures, interaction of hormones, bacteria, sebum (skin oil), and keratinization (the conversion of normal cells to the more structured keratin cells). What does that mean for you? You can make a huge impact on your acne condition by what you choose to put in your mouth.
I remember friends complaining of acne and talking about eating chocolate or dairy or greasy foods and how they would cause a “breakout.” Acne can be the cause of blackheads, whiteheads, pimples, darkened skin, and even scars. It often affects self-esteem and can contribute to depression. People suffering from acne often use extreme measures to rid themselves of this condition that affects 40 to 50 million people in the US at any given time. These blemishes appear when pores become clogged or when bacteria that lives on our skin get into those pore. That is why antibiotics are often one of the treatments for this skin condition. The problem with that treatment is the havoc it wreaks on our digestive system (which causes more inflammation) and the other side effects they can have on the body.
Really, this skin condition is INFLAMMATION – inflammation primarily from inflammatory foods. What kind of foods are these? Processed foods such as soybean oils, prepackaged meals, frozen entrees, and the list goes on… Eating a whole foods diet can greatly reduce the inflammation both within and on the surface of our bodies. Increasing the level of good fatty acids is a great place to start with reducing inflammation.
So, what can be done if you have a chronic case of acne or occasional bouts of it? My Clinician’s Handbook of Natural Medicine, 2 ed. (2008) says that there is a high incidence with acne and the Western diet (pg.5). Other Nutritional Support for Acne include:
- Balance your blood sugar – eliminate processed carbohydrates which raises glucose levels
- Increase consumption of Vitamin A-containing foods – found in animal products such as meat, fish, and poultry and in plant-based foods such as fruits and vegetables.
- Increase consumption of zinc-containing foods – animal products such as grass fed meats, poultry, beans, nuts, and seafood such as oysters and lobsters
- Increase consumption of pantothenic acid (Vitamin B5) – plants and animals including meat, vegetables, legumes, and eggs
- Decrease consumption of processed, packaged foods – this becomes more easily done when you are attempting the items in # 1-4. Avoid or eliminate fast food, microwavable meals, frozen entrees and packaged snacks, and become knowledgeable about eating in restaurants.
- Eliminate trans fats. See # 5.
Another option to help during a breakout or to avoid breakout are a couple of products from my e-store. The first one is topical:
Acnutrol™ topical gel is a comprehensive blend of ingredients designed to help maintain the health and appearance of the skin. It is a safe and effective product that does not cause skin dryness or irritation. This topical contains both antibacterial and anti-inflammatory substances to help with the symptoms of acne.
The next one Acnutrol is an oral supplement that includes the nutrients need for healthy skin like zinc, copper, selenium, fat-soluble vitamins and biotin and pantothenic acid (B5).
You can also combine the two for comprehensive support for your skin’s health.
To order, go to http://pernuwell.dfhealthestore.com and search these items to see for yourself. At checkout, enter the promo code DFH10% for a discount on your first order.