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Metformin for acne

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#1 valo_123

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Posted 16 September 2008 - 03:09 PM

I received some metformin a few weeks ago because I thought my acne was related to insulin resistance in some way or form. I was very sensitive to sugar and carbs and would see it in my face after meals and in the days following (which was all the time because I eat everyday wink.gif ). I was sure I had narrowed the possibilities down to either candida from the lot of antibiotics I had taken or insulin resistance.

So I tried the candida diet for a few weeks with good results until I went to my gf's uncles for dinner and had pasta and carbs. I realized at the beginning of the diet that I wouldn't be able to tell from sticking to the strict candida diet whether or not my problem stemmed from the insulin thing or from candida...(because the diet calls for staying away from all sweets and carbs). So I went the other route and got myself some metformin. I've been taking it for 5 days with obvious results. Now I'm positive my problem is something to do with my body handling insulin, metabolizing sugars, or being insulin resistant.

I really hate to be on this medication but it's amazing being able to eat things like cereal and ice cream for the first time in literally over 2 years without having adverse reactions. Has anyone else gone this route and had results??? The side effect list for metformin isn't anywhere near as long as that of accutane or most anti biotics...I'm taking 500mg with each meal.

#2 Ky123

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Posted 16 September 2008 - 03:51 PM

hey! my doctor prescribed it for me too, but i was on so many other medications i opted not to take it. now i'm thinking maybe i should. make sure to let me know if it keeps working for you.

#3 valo_123

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Posted 16 September 2008 - 04:38 PM

I'll keep you updated

#4 Apple_Blossem

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Posted 16 September 2008 - 06:31 PM

About 5 months ago there were several ppl on this message board who said they had tried it to regulate their blood sugar levels (they did not have diabetes) and said their acne had cleared up.

I do not have health insurance so I can't try it =(. But I did try the low-carb diet and it helped my skin... but it was too hard. I did try Dotty1's low-protein diet to regulate blood sugar levels which was a lot easier... and my skin cleared up 100%.
What are we being fed??

This year, the FDA decided that "cancerous growths and pus-filled lesions" would not be removed from animal carcases because they pose no immedate health risk to humans.

In a recent study, the FDA stated that up to 15% of factory-farmed animals have bodies riddled with cancerous tumors. Up to 30% of animals had internal and external cysts and running infections that were larger than 20cm because of lack of vetrinary care. Factory farms hold 20,000-60,000 cows, pigs or chickens in one warehouse at any one time. 10% of Factory farmed animals are in such poor health that they cannot walk to the slaughter house and must be dragged with chains and ropes.

Is it really health to eat sick animals all the time?

If you would like to know more about your food in a 10 minute free movie, go to:
*Moderator edit, URL removed - read the board rules. *

#5 ariellestar1234

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Posted 16 September 2008 - 07:09 PM

QUOTE (valo_123 @ Sep 16 2008, 03:09 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I received some metformin a few weeks ago because I thought my acne was related to insulin resistance in some way or form. I was very sensitive to sugar and carbs and would see it in my face after meals and in the days following (which was all the time because I eat everyday wink.gif ). I was sure I had narrowed the possibilities down to either candida from the lot of antibiotics I had taken or insulin resistance.

So I tried the candida diet for a few weeks with good results until I went to my gf's uncles for dinner and had pasta and carbs. I realized at the beginning of the diet that I wouldn't be able to tell from sticking to the strict candida diet whether or not my problem stemmed from the insulin thing or from candida...(because the diet calls for staying away from all sweets and carbs). So I went the other route and got myself some metformin. I've been taking it for 5 days with obvious results. Now I'm positive my problem is something to do with my body handling insulin, metabolizing sugars, or being insulin resistant.

I really hate to be on this medication but it's amazing being able to eat things like cereal and ice cream for the first time in literally over 2 years without having adverse reactions. Has anyone else gone this route and had results??? The side effect list for metformin isn't anywhere near as long as that of accutane or most anti biotics...I'm taking 500mg with each meal.



Oooooh, the possibilities!
There seems to be alot of posts regarding lowering our blood sugar levels,and it helping acne..
Are we on to something or what? eusa_think.gif

I know I cant touch sugar/sweeteners..bad carbs, without side effects/inflammation..
I just get tired of my bland diet.
"we may encounter many defeats,but we must not be defeated".

#6 valo_123

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Posted 16 September 2008 - 08:34 PM

QUOTE (ariellestar1234 @ Sep 16 2008, 08:09 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
QUOTE (valo_123 @ Sep 16 2008, 03:09 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I received some metformin a few weeks ago because I thought my acne was related to insulin resistance in some way or form. I was very sensitive to sugar and carbs and would see it in my face after meals and in the days following (which was all the time because I eat everyday wink.gif ). I was sure I had narrowed the possibilities down to either candida from the lot of antibiotics I had taken or insulin resistance.

So I tried the candida diet for a few weeks with good results until I went to my gf's uncles for dinner and had pasta and carbs. I realized at the beginning of the diet that I wouldn't be able to tell from sticking to the strict candida diet whether or not my problem stemmed from the insulin thing or from candida...(because the diet calls for staying away from all sweets and carbs). So I went the other route and got myself some metformin. I've been taking it for 5 days with obvious results. Now I'm positive my problem is something to do with my body handling insulin, metabolizing sugars, or being insulin resistant.

I really hate to be on this medication but it's amazing being able to eat things like cereal and ice cream for the first time in literally over 2 years without having adverse reactions. Has anyone else gone this route and had results??? The side effect list for metformin isn't anywhere near as long as that of accutane or most anti biotics...I'm taking 500mg with each meal.



Oooooh, the possibilities!
There seems to be alot of posts regarding lowering our blood sugar levels,and it helping acne..
Are we on to something or what? eusa_think.gif

I know I cant touch sugar/sweeteners..bad carbs, without side effects/inflammation..
I just get tired of my bland diet.


I don't think it's so much of lowering blood sugar levels (this could lead to chronic fatigue and other bad things) as it is trying to avoid the rapid fluctuations. I've been monitoring my blood sugar before and after meals. If I did it like the dr. said I should (before meals and an hour after)I would have never noticed anything out of the ordinary. Before a meal of brown rice pasta my blood sugar was 85, 5 minutes after taking the last bite my blood sugar had gone to 142 and another two or so minutes after that it was at 160. It took me about 10 minutes to eat. So in 15 minutes my blood sugar went from 85 to 160 then in another 10 minutes back down to 90. That set off a red flag.

I'm pretty sure what happens is the body/glucose doesn't respond to the insulin right away so your pancreas secretes more of it until too much is in the blood stream and a rapid drop in blood sugar levels takes place. This sound about right to anyone familiar with this sort of stuff?

#7 LionQueen

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Posted 25 October 2008 - 10:49 PM

QUOTE (Apple_Blossem @ Sep 16 2008, 05:31 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
About 5 months ago there were several ppl on this message board who said they had tried it to regulate their blood sugar levels (they did not have diabetes) and said their acne had cleared up.

I do not have health insurance so I can't try it =(. But I did try the low-carb diet and it helped my skin... but it was too hard. I did try Dotty1's low-protein diet to regulate blood sugar levels which was a lot easier... and my skin cleared up 100%.



Anyone who considers this a testimonial for Dotty1's extremely restrictive diet should also consider the fact that Apple_Blossem and Dotty1 are posting from the same IP.

#8 valo_123

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Posted 25 October 2008 - 11:33 PM

That's more than a little weird....

#9 john1234

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Posted 26 October 2008 - 01:05 AM

ahaahaha i knew dotty1 and apple_blossom were the same person. They had the exact same typing style. YES!

#10 bryan

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Posted 26 October 2008 - 01:18 AM

Before considering the use of a powerful prescription drug like metformin which has the potential for serious side effects (I've never used the stuff, but it's also probably expensive), why not just use vinegar prior to each meal, which reportedly has similar effects as metformin, and is natural, safe, and much cheaper?

.

#11 valo_123

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Posted 26 October 2008 - 08:13 AM

Tried that. The results weren't anywhere near the same. I have actually stopped metformin because it made me chronically nauseas ha. I figured maybe the time release would help this but I really don't like the idea of having to take a drug long term...

#12 bryan

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Posted 26 October 2008 - 04:09 PM

QUOTE (valo_123 @ Oct 26 2008, 09:13 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Tried that. The results weren't anywhere near the same.


Did you use it exactly the way they did in the study?

.

#13 treefeet

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Posted 26 October 2008 - 05:38 PM

To the person who said "we're onto something"... the connection between carbohydrates and acne is well known by those people who have done their research. No one here seems to truly understand the pathogenesis of acne and that is why they will continue to try every fad under the sun.

It's simple, a high carbohydrate diet elicits a large insulin response, and insulin is responsible for increasing androgens and decreasing the substance that binds with sex hormones making them inactive.

Thus, you get a high level of active androgens which stimulate the sebaceous glands to produce sebum. Combine this with improper cell shedding which stems from vitamin A & D deficiency among other things, and boom you've got acne. You don't need to take metformin, you need to eat a diet that does not contain high-impact carbs like grains (this is why so many people have success cutting out wheat, but they attribute it to a gluten intolerance) and a healthy dose of vitamin rich animal fats.

The problem is insulin resistance is tough to reverse once you've got it. Sometimes diet alone won't cut it. In my case I've found that increasing muscle mass through resistance training and decreasing excess body fat has been very beneficial.

All of the things I've mentioned are well documented medical facts. Not just some 'theory' I've cooked up. Google 'acne & insulin resistance' or 'PCOS & low carb' if you're a girl.

#14 bryan

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Posted 26 October 2008 - 06:02 PM

QUOTE (fruitcocktail @ Oct 26 2008, 06:38 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
It's simple, a high carbohydrate diet elicits a large insulin response, and insulin is responsible for increasing androgens and decreasing the substance that binds with sex hormones making them inactive.

Thus, you get a high level of active androgens which stimulate the sebaceous glands to produce sebum.


How do you explain the fact that giving as much as 300 mg/day of methyl testosterone to normal male test subjects in a study had no effect on their sebum production?

.

#15 treefeet

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Posted 26 October 2008 - 06:12 PM

QUOTE (bryan @ Oct 26 2008, 05:02 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
QUOTE (fruitcocktail @ Oct 26 2008, 06:38 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
It's simple, a high carbohydrate diet elicits a large insulin response, and insulin is responsible for increasing androgens and decreasing the substance that binds with sex hormones making them inactive.

Thus, you get a high level of active androgens which stimulate the sebaceous glands to produce sebum.


How do you explain the fact that giving as much as 300 mg/day of methyl testosterone to normal male test subjects in a study had no effect on their sebum production?

.


I would have to look at the study, can you provide a link? I can tell you that acne is a very common side effect of body builders who use steroids.

I found this
QUOTE
There is no doubt the the sebaceous gland is an androgen target organ. However, testosterone give to an intact male adult had no further effect on SER (sebum excretion rate), the sebaceous glands being maximally stimulated, though in 1974 Strauss et al have showed that pharmacological doses of methyl-testosterone (100 mg/day or more) will produce a small increase in sebum production. Sebaceous glands in females are less than maximally stimulated, since a large dose of testosterone (100-200mg/day) will increase sebaceous gland size. However, relatively small doses of androgens given to a prepubertal child or castrated adult produce a marked increase of the SER. Not surprisingly, sebum production is decreased following castration.


So it sounds like it doesn't have an effect because sebaceous glands are already maxed out, but that isn't the case with females.

#16 valo_123

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Posted 26 October 2008 - 09:04 PM

QUOTE (fruitcocktail @ Oct 26 2008, 06:38 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
To the person who said "we're onto something"... the connection between carbohydrates and acne is well known by those people who have done their research. No one here seems to truly understand the pathogenesis of acne and that is why they will continue to try every fad under the sun.

It's simple, a high carbohydrate diet elicits a large insulin response, and insulin is responsible for increasing androgens and decreasing the substance that binds with sex hormones making them inactive.

Thus, you get a high level of active androgens which stimulate the sebaceous glands to produce sebum. Combine this with improper cell shedding which stems from vitamin A & D deficiency among other things, and boom you've got acne. You don't need to take metformin, you need to eat a diet that does not contain high-impact carbs like grains (this is why so many people have success cutting out wheat, but they attribute it to a gluten intolerance) and a healthy dose of vitamin rich animal fats.

The problem is insulin resistance is tough to reverse once you've got it. Sometimes diet alone won't cut it. In my case I've found that increasing muscle mass through resistance training and decreasing excess body fat has been very beneficial.

All of the things I've mentioned are well documented medical facts. Not just some 'theory' I've cooked up. Google 'acne & insulin resistance' or 'PCOS & low carb' if you're a girl.


You really shouldn't speak for everyone when you say a diet without high impact carbs would be effective enough. Any type of carbs (minus fruit) sets me off. And when I go on a no carb diet my skin improves but I lose weight I can't afford to lose. I realize metformin isn't a good alternative and that's why I stopped taking it. Also, it's much more likely that the insulin, directly or indirectly, is causing the abnormal keratinization than a vitamin A or D deficiency. My insulin levels were tested last week and apparently they came back normal. So I'm guessing I don't suffer from insulin resistance.

I think there's something to the fact that high insulin = low SHBG...but then wouldn't everyone respond to just drinking some soy milk thereby increasing their SHBG? I tried it and it didn't do anything for me. If insulin spikes were the indirect cause of acne wouldn't all food cause problems if eaten in excess? I understand carbs and processed sugars spike your insulin the worst but eating other things in excess would also cause alot of insulin to be circulating in your blood, eventually leading to acne (if insulin/androgens are the main factors). I know in my case I can eat as much of anything I want except carbs and sugar and be perfectly fine. This is where I start to consider the role digestion plays in acne. I'm really stuck between the two...I hate thinking that I might have to deal with 2 rather large problems rather than just getting to the bottom of one. It doesn't really make sense to me why I would have 2 problems in the first place...so then I start thinking about where the two may be connected, but I haven't seen much information on that yet unfortunately.

#17 bryan

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Posted 26 October 2008 - 10:43 PM

QUOTE (fruitcocktail @ Oct 26 2008, 07:12 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I would have to look at the study, can you provide a link? I can tell you that acne is a very common side effect of body builders who use steroids.


I don't know of any place online that has it, but if you live near a medical library and want to read it, here's the full citation: "The Effect of Androgens and Estrogens on Human Sebaceous Glands", John S. Strauss, M.D., Albert M. Kligman, M.D., Ph.D. and Peter E. Pochi, M.D. J Invest Dermatol 1962 Aug; 39:139-55.

QUOTE (fruitcocktail @ Oct 26 2008, 07:12 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I found this
QUOTE
There is no doubt the the sebaceous gland is an androgen target organ. However, testosterone give to an intact male adult had no further effect on SER (sebum excretion rate), the sebaceous glands being maximally stimulated, though in 1974 Strauss et al have showed that pharmacological doses of methyl-testosterone (100 mg/day or more) will produce a small increase in sebum production. Sebaceous glands in females are less than maximally stimulated, since a large dose of testosterone (100-200mg/day) will increase sebaceous gland size. However, relatively small doses of androgens given to a prepubertal child or castrated adult produce a marked increase of the SER. Not surprisingly, sebum production is decreased following castration.


So it sounds like it doesn't have an effect because sebaceous glands are already maxed out, but that isn't the case with females.


Yes! The reference you found above is clearly the same study I'm referring to, although they got the year wrong (it was 1962, not 1974). And yes, Kligman & Strauss's conclusion in their study was that even considerable extra amounts of testosterone don't cause any measurable increase in sebum production in normal men because even their NORMAL levels of androgenic stimulation are already large enough to "max out" the response of the sebaceous glands (the response in women was rather variable...some women got a little extra sebum, others didn't), so extra testosterone doesn't have any extra effect (at least in men).

Despite the fact that I've been pointing out this study for YEARS on this site, people still keep proposing the theory that eating high-carb foods causes acne because it causes an insulin spike, which then causes extra androgen to be produced, which then causes extra sebum, which then causes extra acne! That's a very simple and convincing argument to make, but it has that one troubling little aspect to it: it doesn't appear to be supported by the scientific evidence. I don't entirely deny the possibility that eating carbohydrates (or any other food group, for that matter) _may_ contribute to acne in some strange and as-yet unknown way, I just wish people would stop claiming that it does that specifically by causing the production of more androgens, which then leads to more sebum! wink.gif

.

#18 Rubbish

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Posted 27 October 2008 - 12:11 PM

QUOTE (Rubbish @ Oct 27 2008, 01:06 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
QUOTE (bryan @ Oct 26 2008, 11:43 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
QUOTE (fruitcocktail @ Oct 26 2008, 07:12 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I would have to look at the study, can you provide a link? I can tell you that acne is a very common side effect of body builders who use steroids.


I don't know of any place online that has it, but if you live near a medical library and want to read it, here's the full citation: "The Effect of Androgens and Estrogens on Human Sebaceous Glands", John S. Strauss, M.D., Albert M. Kligman, M.D., Ph.D. and Peter E. Pochi, M.D. J Invest Dermatol 1962 Aug; 39:139-55.

QUOTE (fruitcocktail @ Oct 26 2008, 07:12 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I found this
QUOTE
There is no doubt the the sebaceous gland is an androgen target organ. However, testosterone give to an intact male adult had no further effect on SER (sebum excretion rate), the sebaceous glands being maximally stimulated, though in 1974 Strauss et al have showed that pharmacological doses of methyl-testosterone (100 mg/day or more) will produce a small increase in sebum production. Sebaceous glands in females are less than maximally stimulated, since a large dose of testosterone (100-200mg/day) will increase sebaceous gland size. However, relatively small doses of androgens given to a prepubertal child or castrated adult produce a marked increase of the SER. Not surprisingly, sebum production is decreased following castration.


So it sounds like it doesn't have an effect because sebaceous glands are already maxed out, but that isn't the case with females.


Yes! The reference you found above is clearly the same study I'm referring to, although they got the year wrong (it was 1962, not 1974). And yes, Kligman & Strauss's conclusion in their study was that even considerable extra amounts of testosterone don't cause any measurable increase in sebum production in normal men because even their NORMAL levels of androgenic stimulation are already large enough to "max out" the response of the sebaceous glands (the response in women was rather variable...some women got a little extra sebum, others didn't), so extra testosterone doesn't have any extra effect (at least in men).

Despite the fact that I've been pointing out this study for YEARS on this site, people still keep proposing the theory that eating high-carb foods causes acne because it causes an insulin spike, which then causes extra androgen to be produced, which then causes extra sebum, which then causes extra acne! That's a very simple and convincing argument to make, but it has that one troubling little aspect to it: it doesn't appear to be supported by the scientific evidence. I don't entirely deny the possibility that eating carbohydrates (or any other food group, for that matter) _may_ contribute to acne in some strange and as-yet unknown way, I just wish people would stop claiming that it does that specifically by causing the production of more androgens, which then leads to more sebum! wink.gif

.


This is because the subjects had normal levels of tesotsterone binding proteins, SHBG - sex hormone-binding globulin.
ie the excess testosterone was mopped up.
High glycemic loads decrease these and allow more free testosterone to survive and contribute to the anabolic effect.
High IGF-1 levels and low SHBG are the problem more than testosterone!
The study you cite is so old that the full picture was not known until now.
The work done lately shows the complex balancing system within the human body which is effected by a highly refined western diet, leading to PCOS and Insulin Resistance.
I think the studies in relation to IGF-1, SHBG, glycemic loads, insulin indexes as well as glycemic indexes, Insulin Resistance and PCOS should be pinned in this section of the message boards.
Trolls feed on the simple symptomatic associations of the anabolic state.
Yes acne sufferers sex drive is high and they need to masturbate more but that is a symptom not a cause.
Any restrictive diet putting you in a catabolic state will work but it does not mean that a certain food you were avoiding during diet was the cause.
Refined carbs aren't bad themselves they just are highly dense in calories for their volume and easy to overeat causing insulin spike.

Three meals only a day, no snacking, no alcohol (since 3 years ago), no red meat, no refined sugars (I count honey and fruit juices are refined), no added oils or fats. 2000 Calories a day. Tend to eat all kinds of fish (oily as well) and birds like chicken or turkey, no lamb or pork or beef. Shave every day with single blade razor in morning shower (skin wet for 5 minutes) using shave gel from an aerosol can, wash face with cleanser once after then rinse. Rest of day, just use water only (when needed, at gym for instance). 99% clear. Skin condition very good, can wear clothes without ruining them, used to ruin them when I used to use BP.

#19 LionQueen

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Posted 27 October 2008 - 12:19 PM

QUOTE (Rubbish @ Oct 27 2008, 10:11 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I think the studies in relation to IGF-1, SHBG, glycemic loads, insulin indexes as well as glycemic indexes, Insulin Resistance and PCOS should be pinned in this section of the message boards.



Are these posted, and if so, could you please link me? I'll take a look and ask Ariventa what he thinks.




and wow, there's a lot of stuff pinned in here already! is it all valuable?

#20 skinilove

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Posted 27 October 2008 - 03:29 PM

I'm going to ask my dermatologist about going on Metformin.

Also consider that it will go in your medical history and I am going to ask the pharmacists that I work with if being on a diabetes medication will raise red flags for you as a pre-condition, making it harder to be insured in the future.

Has anyone cross-vetted the "stop masturbating" with the "virgin and proud" posters on the emotional/psychological board? eusa_think.gif
All the latest toughs, you’ve got to shrug them off or shut them off.[/size]