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My clear skin/anti-aging diet & supplements

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First off, I want to say my skin cleared before I came to this board. So this isn't a log of my progress, at least not with acne.

I just summarized my acne story from age 10 to now here: Diet for Clear Skin: My Acne Story - 30 Years Before I Discovered Diet Would Clear My Skin http://dietforclearskin.blogspot.com/2013/02/my-acne-story-30-years-before-i.html

And I did most of my research several years ago and don't always remember the reasons for everything. Especially about how each nutrient helps and each bad food like HFCS harms. Besides, it so complicated, it's impossible to recall it all at any given moment.

The body is a system with a lot of processes. It has processes to deal with crap, but it can only deal with so much and we've been bombarding our with poor diet, sedentary lifestyle or extreme physical activity, poor sleep, binge eating, etc. Any number of changes can be enough to get it functioning enough that your skin clears. But don't stop there.

Anyway, I reread old threads and rediscover so many things I'd forgotten. Often in my own posts! So I've gathered links to a lot of very valuable discussions and placed them in these threads:

Good things thread. Short. For when you only have time for the Answers:

http://www.acne.org/messageboard/Good-t230714.html

Much more detail with links to threads full of research:

http://www.acne.org/messageboard/Tangled-w...ne-t224452.html

Food and beneficial nutrients and how to get them:

http://www.acne.org/messageboard/Food-and-...17#entry2356817

Diet: This is what everyone should do. Everyone. Not just about acne. Acne is not the most important thing.

The main thing is to cut out processed foods and drinks with their bad fats, and nutritionally void refined carbs, especially high fructose corn syrup. Eat more real, nutrient dense food: Fish, fruits and veggies. Meat if you eat it, but ideally limited to healthy free range, not sickly grain fed animals. Never snack on blood sugar spiking sugary foods or drinks. And don't binge eat, even on healthy foods.

Eat more anti-inflammatory foods than inflammatory. the most inflammatory are sugars and hydrogenated/trans fats. Anti-inflammatory foods are fish, and colorful and flavorful fruits, veggies, herbs and spices (from plants, so not salt).

What you want is a blood sugar stabilizing, anti-inflammatory, nutrient rich diet. Do this now. It's good for everything, not just acne. It'll retard aging and all kinds of illness as well as improve all kinds of hormone issues from pms, to menopause to male pattern baldness.

Then try to figure out what you personally have a hypersensitivity to. The most common are dairy and gluten. Other common issues are eggs, citrus, soy, nuts, peanuts, legumes, etc. You could have an actual allergy, or you could lack the ability to digest certain foods properly. Don't eat things you can't digest. Also, even if an allergy doesn't directly result in a pimple, reactions increase inflammation and there is also a relationship between elevated histamine (allergic response) and elevated androgens.

And be more worried about your glucose metabolism, liver function, adrenal function, circulation, circadian rhythm cycle, etc, than acne. Get regular adequate sleep and exercise.

Topical regimen:

I use a mild cleanser or water only on a soft cloth. The only acne related anything I use is an occasional use of BHA. I moisturize with oils sometimes, otherwise aloe vera mixed with green tea, niacinimide and a drop of jojoba. Paula's choice toner. I occasionally oil cleanse. Occasionally apply a mask of something like yogurt. I also make an ACV and green tea toner which I use on my body and face after showering.

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My Regimen:

This is the regimen I was on when I first started my log:

http://www.acne.org/messageboard/index.php...t&p=2179559

Somewhat current regimen:

Ooh - regimen needs to be edited again. Taking fewer supplements, just multi, c, fish oil on occasional, magnesium (for headaches and sleep, but good for acne). Drinking more mint tea than green tea. And my focus now is looking for food hypersensitivities. -Feb 09

Edited from original post.

Status: Clear after 30 years. 2 years in March!

Story: Severe Acne since I was 10. 10-15 years of Dermatologists, Antibiotics, topicals and ACCUTANE did nothing. Discovered oranges triggered the worst of my cystic acne = about 70% improvement. B-complex with zinc, saw palmetto, C and aspirin mask = more improvement, a lot less oily. Diet changes = Clear.

Regimen: Moderately low carb and anti-inflammatory diet and supplements (to reduce hormone imbalance, candida imbalance, inflammation, aging and general health). Gentle cleanser, ACV diluted w/ green tea toner. Occasional use of BHA. Moisturizer w/ niacinimide helps pigment problems.

Current Supplements (most for anti-aging, hirsutism and general health):

Good multi (NSI Synergy w/ 20mg optizinc, ester C, chromium, selenium, high on B vitamins, CoQ10, R-Lipoic Acid, etc), 1,000 mgs vitamin C (helps adrenals, anti-histamine, anti-oxident, collagen booster) , Green tea (anti-androgen, anti-oxident), Beta-Sitosterol (anti-androgen found in Saw Palmetto and Nettle) Omega-3 Fish oil (anti-inflammatory and hormone balancer?), Probiotics.

Diet:

Snack or eat every 3-4 hours. High on fruit, vegetables, greens, legumes, free range eggs, salmon, nuts.

Limit to varying degrees: sugar and simple carbs, fruit juices, even lemon juice, dairy. Bad fats.

Avoid completely: Oranges (severe cystic acne causing allergy?), sugary drinks.

Favorite product recommendations:

Ghiradelli's bittersweet chocolate chips (low on suger, I have them with raw nuts for snack).

Unsweetened hot cocoa. Packed with antioxidents, better than coffee.

Green tea flavored w/anti-oxident things like lemon or grape skin.

Sweet potatoes. For breakfast, snacks.

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Changes: Stopping Saw Palmetto

Note: I had been taking Saw Palmetto instead of Beta sitosterol for the past few months because I ran out and the brand I was taking came in rather large caplets.

However, I've just decided to quit Saw Palmetto due to side effects (headaches, brain fog, diuretic) in case it was contributing to my headaches and feeling not particularly alert. Not to mention my constant thirst. I've always been always thirsty and had headaches, but it seems like the thirst has been worse for the past several months and I was having different kinds of headaches. Nettle leaf also is a diuretic and I stopped taking it several weeks ago and bought nettle root instead. But when it's gone I don't think I'll get more. I may double up on green tea and keep up the phytosterols.

Anyway, I have started taking Walgreen's Plant Sterols, which has about 450 mgs phyto sterols, not broken down with beta sitosterol of course. Few supplements do. But from what I've seen in supplements and food, the most abundant phytosterol is Beta sitosterol. A cup of avocado, for example, has Campesterol 11.5 mg

Stigmasterol 4.6 mg

Beta-sitosterol 175 mg

I've also started taking only one of the 2 Multi capsules I'm supposed to take per day and hopefully getting the rest from food. And I try to eat certain things every day: an apple, a carrot, spinach or brocoli, cooked tomato or tomato juice, onion or garlic, along with plenty of other fruits and vegetables.

I take R lipoic acid and Q10 every other day. Your body produces these, but less and less as you get older. I also take L-Carnitine (or is it carnosine? the one the prevents glycation) whenever I don't eat any meat as it comes from muscle tissues. And digestive enzymes papain and bromelein when I do eat meat, but I may start taking it daily as they say it can undo cross linking. I don't know whether that's when taken topically or orally though.

I also haven't been using Camellia oil for months. Most days I put aloe that I've mixed with green tea, niacinimide, and hyaluronic acid on most of my face and a similar concoction but with some store bought moistuizer, glycerin, and vitamin E under my eyes and in some spots prone to getting fine lines. I have one smile line and one forehead line on one side of my face only.

I've also quit applying a moisturizer with sunscreen because I only want to use physical sunblocks of zinc oxide and titanium dioxide. There have been claims that the chemical sunscreens produce free radicals as they are broken down in the sun. I've ordered Paula's Choice Mineral sunscreen.

Also switched a few weeks ago to Everyday Minerals foundation which is zinc oxide and titanium dioxide and mica.

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Still clear btw. For over a year now.

The only acne I've had is an occasional allergic reaction to lemon/lime or other fruit juice, which I can have some, but too much and I'll get a cyst. I've also had a rosacea pimples on my face since summer started, but my face is never red since my diet changes and vitamin C supplementation.

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Exercise:

I walk daily, at least half an hour, and move around as much as possible throughout the day. I don't drive around looking for the closest parking space or avoid stairs, physical labor, etc. I feed some stray cats I discovered along my walk, so I never miss a day.

It's my plan to do a brief resistance workout targeting 2 muscle groups per day, every day, but I haven't managed to make this a habit yet. It only takes about 15 minutes, so it's easy to figure I'll do it later and then never do. The idea is to do it first thing in the morning.

I stole the idea from the series of books called '8 minutes in the morning' which you can search for on Amazon and read the description and reviews. I didn't see any reason to buy the book though. I can come up with my own workout. But you do multiple sets of 2 resistance exercises on 2 muscle groups per day (to fatigue the muscle which grows when it heals). When I do it, I usually do either squats or lunges for lower body and alternate pushups or leg lifts or something with dumb bells. Or use dumb bells when I do the squats.

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Going to try adding a quarter to a half cup of flaxseed daily per the current discussion on the nutrition board. I've already eat some, but not daily and only a few tablespoons.

Edit: I never did do that, but will try to start the habit now.

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I'm editing the first post to have a current regimen. This is the older post being replaced, some of which changed a while back.

Status: Clear after 30 years.

Story: Acne since I was 10. 10-15 years of dermatologists, antibiotics, topicals and accutane did nothing. Then discovered oranges triggered the worst of my cystic acne = about 70% improvement. A couple years ago: 50 mgs of Zinc, saw palmetto, C and aspirin mask = more improvement, less oily. About a year ago: Diet changes = Clear.

Regimen: Moderately low carb diet and supplements (to reduce hormone imbalance, candida imbalance, inflammation, aging and general health). Gentle cleanser, ACV diluted w/ green tea toner. Camelia oil. Weekly or so aspirin mask/scrub, usually scrub.

Current Supplements (most for antiaging, hirsutism and general health):

Good multi (NSI Synergy w/ 20mg optizinc, ester C, chromium, selenium, high on B vitamins, etc), 2,000 mgs vitamin C (anti-histamine, anti-oxident, collagen booster) , Green tea (anti-androgen, anti-oxident), Nettle Leaf (anti-androgen, also supposed to help sinuses), Beta-Sitosterol (anti-androgen found in Saw Palmetto and Nettle) Omega-3 Fish oil (anti-inflammatory and hormone balancer?), CoQ10, R-Lipoic Acid, E from mixed tocotrienals and tocopherols. Fiber. Probiotics.

Diet:

Snack or eat every 3-4 hours. High on fruit, vegetables, greens, legumes, free range eggs, salmon, nuts.

Limit to varying degrees: sugar and simple carbs, fruit juices, even lemon juice, dairy. Bad fats.

Avoid completely: Oranges (severe cystic acne causing allergy?), sugary drinks.

Favorite recommendations:

Ghiradelli's bittersweet chocolate chips (low on suger, I have them with raw nuts for snack).

Unsweetened hot cocoa. Packed with antioxidents, better than coffee.

Salada flavored green tea w/anti-oxident things like grape skin.

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I need to note that I have been taking BCP since just after my skin cleared. I was also prescribed spiro at that time and I tried to take it sometimes but quit from the dehydration. But I've been taking the prescribed 100mgs for a couple of months.

I don't take those for acne. My skin was clear before I started. But they could be playing a part in keeping me clear.

Anyway, I plan to keep it up for a few more months because it is working on my hirsutism, but then I want to cut back on both by switching to a lower estrogen version of my bcp and cut the spiro. I am looking for more DHT blocking type things to add.

NAC/MSM/taurine. And they have benefits in their own right.

http://www.acne.org/messageboard/index.php...20&start=20

Go back to taking more zinc? There's only 20 mgs in my multi, but it's optizinc. But zinc makes me nauseous.

B6, but there's plenty in my multi.

Increase fish oil/fish?

Increase C for adrenal function among other things.

Increase green tea? DHT mimic.

Look for more DHT mimics and inhibitors.

Increase flax seed in diet.

More salt/cayenne for stomach acid.

Anything to improve liver function so it can do better job with hormones. -- Taurine?

Anything to improve thyroid? -

Already taking a supplement with Iodine and minerals, but only at half dosage

http://www.vitacost.com/NSI-Thyroid-Complex-with-L-Tyrosine

High estrogen hampers thyroid? Among other things. See article about progesterone cream.

Progesterone: Maybe should see about progestin only bcp?

http://www.all-natural.com/wildyam.html

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Things that may be/had been wrong with me.

Note that the diet changes made and kept up for nearly 2 years help with all these things. Is any more needed?

Also, note that non-specific general health blood tests show all is normal.

Hormones, of course. Acne, hirsutism. However never had PMS issues. Acne was not cyclical, very rarely had cramps, more likely to have some lower back pain, but still not bad and not that often. No mood swings. Light, short periods. Husband/boyfriends rarely ever knew when I had a period.

Edit to Note: I've had more like a 1 day period and no pains whatsoever for over a year now. 3/09. Also, mint tea has made a big difference in hirsutism. Growth is much less coarse.

Testosterone/DHT hypersensitivity. Because per tests, my levels aren't abnormally high.

Hypothyroid. Body temp is low. Not particularly energetic. Tendency to be a size or two larger than I should be, but that was probably all the simple carbs and no longer an issue with diet changes. Edit to Note: tests don't show thyroid issues. I'm in the 'normal' range. I've been tested a couple of times.

Adrenals. Just because the bad diet, stress and poor sleep can lead to adrenal fatigue and that affects hormone balance. And I had a few years of poor sleep relatively recently. Not big on the stress though.

Dry nasal passages and dry mouth. I always thought I had sinus problems, but i rarely feel pain in sinus. Some pressure sometimes, with barometric pressure changes. But mostly it's just the mucus is very thick, which is apparently caused by dehydration. But other than the two symptoms above, I don't think I'm dehydrated. Skin is good. Eyes are sometimes dry, but I don't think that's unusual.

Headaches and lack of energy.

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Note: I switched to a lower estrogen BCP starting this past Sunday. From Zovia 50 to Zovia 35.

And I've only been taking 50mgs of spiro for the last couple of weeks. I was feeling dehydrated and since I think I'm slightly hypothyroid, probably don't want to do anything that messes with potassium. Although my thyroid problem could be because I use so little salt.

I've tried applying spiro topically. I've dissolved some in aloe and applied to my chin, and that definately produces results, but that's a very high concentration. I want to mix in some lotion and try it elsewhere.

I've also consciously been trying to spend a little more time in the sun for vitamin D. Note, multi has 700 iu of D3.

Also, with my last order a few weeks ago, I switched to Natrol Plant sterols which does specify how much beta sitosterol it contains. I just take one, not a huge dosage.

I tried taurine for about a week and felt extremely dehydratied. May have been a coincidence, but Taurine is a diuretic, as are many nutrients like C, and maybe it was the last straw. I gave the bottle to diabetic ex-husband. I think I'd rather try MSM.

Also considering DIM, which helps with estrogen metabolism. Although I don't believe estrogen dominance is my issue.

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Diet related to menstrual problems - pms, flow, duration, cramps.

People on Raw diets have noted their periods shortening and PMS issues disappearing. They tend to be vegetarian. Is it the lack of meat or increase in nutrition, or both?

Note, I've always had a short 3-day at the most period with minimal PMS. Now it's even shorter and can't recall the last time I had lower back pain which is what I usually had. Cramps were very rare. And I've never been a big meat eater. I just don't care for it, and tend to choose vegetarian or fish options.

Links:

http://www.camucamufruit.com/ (click the menstruation and Diet link at bottom)

Study:

http://www.greenjournal.org/cgi/content/full/95/2/245

Discussion thread which has links, including an encyclopedia article containing anthropological observations of traditional cultures not having PMS and some not seeming to even menstruate. OP is eats Raw.

http://www.acne.org/messageboard/DIM-appea...se-t189473.html

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I'm out of Beta -sitosterol and don't think I'll get more.

Saw doctor about my thirst and dry nasal passages. Was tested for Sjogrens syndrome. Results were negative, but in my research, found that NAC or cysteine, sulfur, and gamma linoleic acid helped with symptoms. I bought Evening Primrose oil and that seems to help. More, I think, than the expensive prescription I was given that's supposed to stimulate saliva.

So I think I'll try GLA and NAC which are also both anti-androgen. I'm ordering Black Currant Oil for the GLA as it has the least amount of ALA or other omega 6 oil.

The hair growth has worsened since I switched to lower estrogen BC and quit the oral spiro. Don't consistently remember to apply topically. The growth on my chin is definitely finer after each time I apply it.

This week, I also started a new hyaluronic acid supplement that also has a few hundred milligrams of MSM.

And I started taking a cal/mag/zinc near bedtime a week or so ago, hoping it will help me stay asleep in addition to the other benefits of those nutrients.

Note: Doctor also tested Thyroid and results were normal. So I'll probably quit the thyroid supplement when I run out. Just keep trying to remember to use salt.

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My GLA (Black Current Oil) and NAC arrived yesterday and I promptly took each then and another GLA before bed and again this morning. I'm hoping twice a day ont he GLA will help. Once a day with the NAC.

I did not take my prescription med today since it's hot and muggy today and it causes the side effect of sweating. It does that very well, while not stimulating saliva glands at all.

GLA is also an anti-androgen of some sort.

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Hey, I was curious... can you eat grapefruits, lemons, or tomatoes?

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Hey, I was curious... can you eat grapefruits, lemons, or tomatoes?
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I'm looking into/discussing inflammation being a root cause here.

Lowering inflammation. From http://www.lef.org/protocols/prtcl-146a.shtml#deteffsd

The docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) fraction of fish oil is the best documented supplement to suppress TNF-a, IL-6, IL-1(b), and IL-8 (Jeyarajah et al. 1999; James et al. 2000; Watanabe et al. 2000; Yano et al. 2000). A study on healthy humans and those with rheumatoid disease shows that fish oil suppresses these dangerous cytokines by up to 90% (James et al. 2000).

Other cytokine-lowering supplements are DHEA (Casson et al. 1993), vitamin K (Reddi et al. 1995; Weber 1997), GLA (gamma linolenic acid) (Purasiri et al. 1994), and nettle leaf extract (Teucher et al. 1996). Antioxidants, such as vitamin E (Devaraj et al. 2000) and N-acetyl-cysteine (Gosset et al. 1999), may also lower pro - inflammatory cytokines and protect against their toxic effects.

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I started going to an accupuncturist Monday for my dry mouth, nose and sometimes eyes. Today was my second visit. She put in a lot more needles this time after I told her I hadn't really experienced any improvement. I think she's mostly concentrating on my sinuses though, not my dryness issue which is what I went there for. She does put a couple of needles in the area of the largest salivary gland. I don't know about the nose she puts some in and around my nose, but that could be about sinuses. I need to search for where nasal mucus comes from. Anyway, there was a lot more pain where the needles went into sinus related areas and my left temple. The last time, only one or two placed in the center of my forehead hurt at all and not much. This time those didn't hurt at all but the ones in my cheeks and temple hurt quite a bit.

She also gave me some herbal tablets which I'm to take in very large numbers 3 times per day. A total of 18 pills each time. Two are to strengthen my body and one is for sinuses. I don't recognize very many of the ingredients and there's some I don't want to think about.

I believe the GLA I've been taking has caused a slight improvement. And maybe the prescription, but I hope it's the GLA as I hate the prescription which makes me sweat. Also, I started taking the prescription nearly a week before getting the GLA and it wasn't until after adding the GLA that I noticed anything. And it could also be the NAC that I started at the same time as the GLA.

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I haven't had any dairy for the last two days except for a tiny bit in some baked goods, so today i decided to start my 2 weeks of dairy elimination and count those two days. So this is day three.

Note: There is 1/4 -1/2 cup of my yogurt in the batch of low sugar brownies and the baked oatmeal I baked saturday and I do plan to eat although I will freeze most of the brownies. Since I know i'm not deathly allergic, I doubt that the tiny amounts will have an effect.

Damn, I just remembered I've had a small amount of butter each day. Less than half a tablespoon though.

This is to test if it has an effect on my sinuses which have gotten better a few times when I was travelling for a lengthy period, specifically to the times I spent a month or two in Spain. I prefer to think it was the change of climate, getting away from this god-awful humid place with its constantly shifting barometric pressure, but other things that were different would be getting away from my pets and the lack of dairy in Spain as I had little milk which isn't drunk there much. And while they have cheese, they don't have cheesy foods. However, now that i think about it, I know I had cheese and probably yogurt, and still I felt a lot better. Maybe this is a waste of time. I didn't come in contact with any animals there though. They are less into pets than we are.

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Well, it's day 10 or so of no dairy and while I have felt better the last few days, I'm not sure it's related to dairy as the barometric pressure has been steady the last several days.

Also, the androgenic hair has been very fine lately and I have not applied spiro topically all week I think. I think it's perhaps the NAC and/or GLA. Of course, the hair is still there and growing fast like always, it's just a lot less coarse.

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Hi

first of all congratulations

I started to look for holistic regimens to follow, because pills, lotions, creams, etc never did nothing to me.

I was looking at your diet, can I ask you some questions?

Do you track the carbs, fats and proteins that you have per day?

How many kcal per day do you have?

Do you have chicken or turkey on your diet?

BTW I'm not taking any supplement now, but thinking on start with B complex, Omega 3 and others

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Do you track the carbs, fats and proteins that you have per day?

How many kcal per day do you have?

Do you have chicken or turkey on your diet?

BTW I'm not taking any supplement now, but thinking on start with B complex, Omega 3 and others

No, I don't track anything. I just eat/do more good things and less bad things. The only thing I'm strict about is sugary/refined drinks and snacks. I do eat some chicken and turkey, usually when eating out. I don't really care for meat much and rarely buy it to cook at home. I have quite a bit of fish.

And for supplements, you can get a b-complex, zinc and C in one pill. It's usually called something like 'stress formula.' Nature made had one. This is what I was taking when my skin became less oily and I rarely had any inflamed acne on my face. And I had been taking just Zinc for awhile before that.

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So, I've been noticing for several weeks now that growth of androgenic hair has been slowing down. I at first attributed it to the NAC and GLA I had begun taking, but now I'm thinking it's the spearmint or peppermint teas I've been drinking. So about a week ago, I decided to increase to 2 cups a day and I think the growth is even slower.

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I started avoiding gluten yesterday.

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Ok, it's Friday, my fifth day of avoiding gluten. After just a couple of days, my sinuses drained a bit and I've felt a lot better since headache-wise considering there was a hurricane in the area. So maybe this is working. Damn. I so don't want to be gluten intolerant.

If it's not more conclusive by the end of the week, I might try to be more methodical by trying a hypo-allergenic diet for a week, then adding back in more foods gradually. Then again, that takes more planning. Maybe I'll just stick to the original plan and avoid gluten for 2 weeks and see.

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Hmm. It's been a little over three weeks since I started avoiding gluten. Sure seems like longer. No improvement as far as I can tell.

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Hmm. It's been a little over three weeks since I started avoiding gluten. Sure seems like longer. No improvement as far as I can tell.

I love this!! keep it up. I'm like you trying diffrent sh** all the time ( mostly vitamins and home remedy treatments, diet changes etc) . I love reading what you've tried and what does and does not work for you.

Just curious?? What sort of cleanser do you use? and What do you think of lush products?

I've been using their stuff for a few weeks now and It's ok but i'm just curious what you think might be better? Also, in case you didn't know be careful with some of the Nature's made vitamins alot of them have other crap added, make sure it's dairy gluten etc... free. ( you probably already knew that but just thought i'd tell ya )

Thanks!!

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