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Ketosis and Fasting / Starvation


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#1 Riddled

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Posted 28 March 2011 - 01:05 PM

Just wondering how people found ketogenic diets are/were for their skin?
More specifically anyone who found that they made their skin worse?

I only ask because i tried a ketogenic diet recently for just over 5 weeks and for most of it my skin seemed to get worse although it did seem to get better at the end, but even then not the results i had expected, from what i had read. Maybe i was just about to go completely clear and i was just going through the ol' "detoxing stage".


I had to stop the diet due to kidney pain that wasn't going away and disturbing calculus/tartar type deposits on my teeth. I never intended doing it long term anyway, i was just interested to see the affects on myself.

I wonder if anyone else has experienced these calculus / tartar deposits?


I did seem to notice some kind of connection with large boil type nasty spots appearing after longs periods without food, say half a day or more, which was basically fasting and probably exaggerated considering i was already in permanent ketosis. This seems to go against the more common observation of improvements in acne during fasting.

I should note i was eating large amounts of spinach, every day in fact, and that this could have also been the significant contributor to the calculus and/or kidney pain, through the deposit of oxalate crystals. Anyones knowledge on this would be appreciated. Cheers.


#2 Vanbelle

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Posted 03 April 2011 - 01:09 PM

For like a second I was near ketogenic dieting, and I've given up on the concept I think...I just eat too much fruit. But, ketosis is nothing to fear, and there definitely is a transitional phase. If you were experiencing kidney pain good for you for stopping, because it has been linked with kidney failure, although I do believe this to be a bit of a misconstrued concept. If you aren't doing well, add back in healthy carbs (still avoid grains), like nut butters and maybe a fruit smoothie in the morning (eat fruit before anything else; if you eat it after food that is harder to digest, it sits in your stomach and rots). Also, people have experienced fog or haze while transitioning. If you really want to hear people messing with ketogenic dieting, check out some bodybuilding forums. They are riddled with posts about it, and you will find some hardcore diets on there. Of course, for them, their diet is like...part of their life. They are the cleanest eaters I've ever come up against.

Make sure you are getting enough cruciferous vegetables, taking supplements (fish oil to balance omega 3 to 6, a multi, you know the drill), avoiding caffeine and your meat is high quality (grass-fed beef, wild-caught fish). You can try ordering everything off US Wellness Meats if you are interested in really seeing what a clean as sh*t diet can do for you. Also, dairy is a NO, UNLESS it's raw. If it's pasteurized, it's a bunch of crap and don't even bother.

If your diet is clean in that sense, and not just solely based on ketosis, you should get clear skin. Some people still have problems, and I believe it's probably due to them not listening to their bodies fully, because there is a bio-individuality to eating carbs. For example, trying eat a very high-carb meal (a bowl of sweet potato french fries, for example). If you want to run around, great: you are a carb burner. If you go into a coma: you are a absolutely the opposite. Metabolic typing should most likely be assessed so as to determine if ketosis is optimal, especially if you are looking at your skin. And then from there, also consider things like food sensitivity. For people with bad skin, diet is a very comprehensive concept I'm sure you know. It's more of a journey than a solution. If you want clear skin, focus on what an optimal diet is for you. Might I suggest getting a comprehensive blood panel? That's a good place to start for figuring out your metabolism, and how you handle sugar.

Good luck! I'm in a similar boat as you, still in the process of figuring out what works for me. And for the record, my skin is a piece of crap. Don't want to act like I have the answer, but I'm fairly confident in this process for achieving overall health and, consequently, clear skin.


Sorry that was long and a round-about way of answering your question, but I hope I helped. Everything I said you can find on this forum anyway so, there you go!
-Sarah

#3 Riddled

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Posted 06 April 2011 - 10:24 AM

Thanks for the reply smile.gif

I very much doubt the medical community are going to "cure" acne in any of our lifetimes, or in useful time for us anyhow, so without people helping each other and sharing ideas on boards like these we are left with "the regime" or tain or a face full of zits. None of those choices appeals to me personally.

The more i mess around the more i believe my acne is being caused by, or is related to, Small bowel bacterial overgrowth syndrome (SBBOS), or small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO).

I think this is directly linked to malabsorbtion of certain food types in some kind of cause or effect relationship.

In my case i am coming to the conclusion that i have some kind of fructose malabsorption going on. Which sadly means the one food type i thought i could always rely on [tasty and good for you], FRUIT, is actually somehow part of the problem.

I think many people [say 30% at least] would see an improvement in their skin on a fructose malabsorption diet, but i dont bother mentioning it on here usually because this kind of theory is often derided.

I really wish i knew what my healthy carbs are, for me this is my million dollar question.

I want to try a diet with enough carbs to prevent ketosis but not carbs that i malabsorb. Btw i am using gi symptoms such a heartburn and gas as indicators of malabsorbtion.
When i was on the ketogenic diet, which included lots of terrible unhealthy processed food, these more or less disapeered so this leads me to believe that i am malabsorbing certain carbs, i just dont know which at the moment.

I understand the desire for a healthy diet but at the moment i am feeling that maybe the "healthiest" diet is one that doesn't contain troublesome foods whether they are considered healthy or not. My case in point is spinach, generally considered a wonder food, which i was using to "balance" my terrible diet when going ketogenic but it seems it may actually have been part of the problem.

I know what you mean about the bodybuilding diets, bodybuilders are often the most up to date on nutrition and what acutally works because they mainly operate on a what works basis. One of the nice side effects of the ketogenic diet was that i was ultra "cut" for the first time in a few years but i also lost strength so i understand why bodybuilders carbo load.

If people have the guts for it and they can stomach the moral implications and they aren't on any kind of training regime i would recommend trying a ketogenic diet for a few weeks, without any spinach and see what happens to there skin. Make sure you drink loads of water and have plenty of fat, at least 70%. From a purely selfish point of view i would be interested to see if anyone else experiences the kidney pain and calculus/tartar type deposits on their teeth, without the spinach. I don't want to mess around again until this bloody annoying stuff is off my teeth first though.


I am the true master of a long and round-about way, no one can match me for rambling.

Good luck to you too.

Edited by Riddled, 06 April 2011 - 10:46 AM.


#4 chunkylard

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Posted 06 April 2011 - 10:32 AM

Ketogenic diets are good in the sense that they have an extremely small impact on your blood sugar, almost negligible. They're bad in the sense that if you're eating crappy hormone-laden meat, you could be causing more problems than you'd be solving. If you're going to go on a ketogenic diet, please buy all organic, antibiotic-free, hormone-free, vegetarian-fed meat and drink lots more water than you normally would to reduce the slight strain on your kidneys. Also try to avoid dairy as much as possible (I wouldn't really recommend raw dairy but if you absolutely must have dairy get it raw and unpasturized.)

#5 Riddled

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Posted 06 April 2011 - 11:13 AM

That is the irony of my experience on a ketogenic diet. Although the results of my skin were nothing to write home about at first and i had some other problems as mentioned, my Gi [gastrointestinal] problems massively improved. But this is contrary to what many people would have had me believe. Like you say i was eating loads of crap, lots of terrible processed food and shed loads of cheese and yet my Gi problems improved, i had virtually no heartburn for weeks. I start eating carbs again and my good ol friend heartburn pops up his head once again.

I think the disapointing results with my skin may have been a temporary problem as it was improving before i had to stop or it may have had something to do with the fact i wasn't eating enough and my ratio of fats to proteins wasn't right and/or i was often going long periods without food at all, whilst already in a ketogenic state [basically starvation].

For me and i suspect others, the glycemic index factor has little or no effect on my skin. I think carbs are playing another role in acne and it may be through malabsorbtion and bacterial overgrowth. I think reducing your gi may have coincedental results as a result of reducing malabsorbtion and maybe vice versa also of course.

I don't think dairy has any negative impact on my skin or gi symptoms either, on my long term health maybe but i don't really care about that to be honest. I have no doubt that this may not be the case for other people though and many may malabsorb dairy, it is just dependent on your genetic heritage.

My life generally follows the law of sod. I recently decided that due to my moral and ethical convictions i would go completely vegan, at just about the same time i started making a connection between my skin and health and carbohydrate malabsorbtion. Basically i am pretty sure it will turn out that i can only meat or dairy without problems ie i'ts either a lifetime of physical pain and anguish or emotional pain and anguish.

Life is a real mother f.....

Edited by Riddled, 06 April 2011 - 11:14 AM.


#6 uncle buck

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Posted 06 April 2011 - 06:39 PM

I've been on a ketogenic diet for over a year. Previously I just avoided sugar (not fruit), but since then I avoided all carbs and fruit, generally eating less than 20grams a day. My health improved in all areas, and I still eat dairy that isn't raw. Raw dairy is illegal here, and I just can't find any other consistent and cheap fat source. I avoid milk of course but eat about a kilo of cheese a week and the same amount of sour cream. I eat coconut and avocado quite often too. I also eat wild fish and free range chicken / pork. I look like an athlete too and I hardly ever work out.

I suspect if I had a better source of dairy i'd be feeling even better, but i'm not moving to another country for that.

#7 mike_wf

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Posted 06 April 2011 - 08:09 PM

Have you tried treating your SIBO? Aren't there treatments for it?

#8 chunkylard

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Posted 07 April 2011 - 12:40 AM

QUOTE (Riddled @ Apr 6 2011, 12:13 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
That is the irony of my experience on a ketogenic diet. Although the results of my skin were nothing to write home about at first and i had some other problems as mentioned, my Gi [gastrointestinal] problems massively improved. But this is contrary to what many people would have had me believe. Like you say i was eating loads of crap, lots of terrible processed food and shed loads of cheese and yet my Gi problems improved, i had virtually no heartburn for weeks. I start eating carbs again and my good ol friend heartburn pops up his head once again.

I think the disapointing results with my skin may have been a temporary problem as it was improving before i had to stop or it may have had something to do with the fact i wasn't eating enough and my ratio of fats to proteins wasn't right and/or i was often going long periods without food at all, whilst already in a ketogenic state [basically starvation].

For me and i suspect others, the glycemic index factor has little or no effect on my skin. I think carbs are playing another role in acne and it may be through malabsorbtion and bacterial overgrowth. I think reducing your gi may have coincedental results as a result of reducing malabsorbtion and maybe vice versa also of course.

I don't think dairy has any negative impact on my skin or gi symptoms either, on my long term health maybe but i don't really care about that to be honest. I have no doubt that this may not be the case for other people though and many may malabsorb dairy, it is just dependent on your genetic heritage.

My life generally follows the law of sod. I recently decided that due to my moral and ethical convictions i would go completely vegan, at just about the same time i started making a connection between my skin and health and carbohydrate malabsorbtion. Basically i am pretty sure it will turn out that i can only meat or dairy without problems ie i'ts either a lifetime of physical pain and anguish or emotional pain and anguish.

Life is a real mother f.....


Blood sugar impact by carbohydrates has almost everything to do with acne. I think the reason you didn't really see benefits is because you were eating crappy food on the ketogenic diet.

So your blood sugar-related acne might have disappeared, but when you're consuming copious amounts of dairy, it would very much likely still cause you to break out.

#9 Dotty1

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Posted 07 April 2011 - 09:31 AM

What exactly is a ketogenic diet? Is that a diet that keeps you in ketosis? Do you use those little urine testing ketone sticks?

Do you have to consume a lot of protein and very few carbs?

#10 Drizzler

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Posted 07 April 2011 - 09:54 AM

QUOTE (Dotty1 @ Apr 7 2011, 10:31 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
What exactly is a ketogenic diet? Is that a diet that keeps you in ketosis? Do you use those little urine testing ketone sticks?

Do you have to consume a lot of protein and very few carbs?



You consume a lot of fat and very few carbs. Moderate protein consumption. Too much protein would just get turned into glucose anyway via gluconeogenesis. My skin does indeed get better the lower carb I go, plus I shed weight like crazy. I can stuff my face with good fats and some protein as much as I want and still get leaner and leaner- I got way too skinny at one point. Also, my skin takes on that soft, supple, perfect form when super low-carb.

I tend to view the ultra low-carb diet as a therapeutic tool. For most, I don't think it is necessarily any way to live your life permanently (though some people do just fine, perhaps even better off). It is my ultimate fall-back, or "retreat diet" as I like to call it. If I want quick healing, weight normalization, skin clearing after say a week of a little to much partying or what have you, ultra low-carb it is.

It's just like the Healing Naturally by Bee diet- the one from the famous Brenton B. "diet isn't related to acne... bullcrap" thread.

Riddled - what exactly were you eating on your keto diet?

#11 chunkylard

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Posted 08 April 2011 - 11:52 AM

QUOTE (Dotty1 @ Apr 7 2011, 10:31 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
What exactly is a ketogenic diet? Is that a diet that keeps you in ketosis? Do you use those little urine testing ketone sticks?

Do you have to consume a lot of protein and very few carbs?


Yes, on a ketogenic diet you want to remain in ketosis. However, the amount of daily carbs required to stay in ketosis can be drastically different for some people. Most low-carb diets advocate less than 25g carbs per day usually around 22, give or take a few.) However some people can stay in Ketosis with as many as 60g of carbs per day (most of these people are heavier or taller or both, since the taller/heavier you are, the more calories you're burning per day and thus carbs.)

#12 Riddled

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Posted 10 April 2011 - 03:08 PM

Uncle buck and anyone else on a long term ketogenic diet or who has tried one, is your skin completely clear? Do you still get any spots whether small or insignificant?

Is the blood sugar and carbohydrate / GI connection actually proven?
Does that mean it applies to everyone?

At the moment my diet is what would be considered an abomination and that can be seen in my skin but it's impossible to point the finger at one thing as there are just too many suspects. I plan to try cutting out all fructose/fructans, hopefully all sucrose too, while still having glucose and see what happens. I want to experiment with different carbs but it's easier said than done. I'm pretty sure the GI of glucose is fairly high so if it is the blood sugar-insulin impact process that is affecting me then my skin should be fairly bad with the glucose i guess.

My diet while in ketosis was basically:

Eggs - lots
Tuna - lots
Mayonaise
butter
cheese
chicken
some other meats
frankfurters
bacon
spinach - everyday
celery
whey protein powder
some amounts of milk



I should add that there is an explanation given for why a ketogenic diet may lead to skin problems for a while, that being that fat and/or "toxins" are released from your stored fat as you use it as an energy source. This does kind of fit in with me because i'm sure i noticed a worsening of me skin after prolonged periods of not eating [basically starvation] which is when my stored fat would of been being used the most. If you google ketosis and atkins and skin problems/acne, along with lots of people noting improvements there are people also noting problems.


I need to look into sibo more really. I think i have seen people mentioning antibiotics but i have some kind of paranoia regarding them for one reaon or another

#13 03GT

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Posted 10 April 2011 - 03:18 PM

I've been doing low carb for the past 10 months. Initially I did keto for about 6 months but then I became more liberal in my diet and consuming carbs in the form of nuts (cashews) and also eating more artificial sweetners. On keto I was getting about 1-2 small spots/week but now I get slighlty more spots. I'm still trying to determine my triggers, but I stick to the diet because 1) I get far less acne than I did on a conventional diet and 2) the diet isn't that hard to adhere to.

#14 chunkylard

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Posted 10 April 2011 - 07:16 PM

QUOTE (Riddled @ Apr 10 2011, 04:08 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Uncle buck and anyone else on a long term ketogenic diet or who has tried one, is your skin completely clear? Do you still get any spots whether small or insignificant?

Is the blood sugar and carbohydrate / GI connection actually proven?
Does that mean it applies to everyone?

At the moment my diet is what would be considered an abomination and that can be seen in my skin but it's impossible to point the finger at one thing as there are just too many suspects. I plan to try cutting out all fructose/fructans, hopefully all sucrose too, while still having glucose and see what happens. I want to experiment with different carbs but it's easier said than done. I'm pretty sure the GI of glucose is fairly high so if it is the blood sugar-insulin impact process that is affecting me then my skin should be fairly bad with the glucose i guess.

My diet while in ketosis was basically:

Eggs - lots
Tuna - lots
Mayonaise
butter
cheese
chicken
some other meats
frankfurters
bacon
spinach - everyday
celery
whey protein powder
some amounts of milk



I should add that there is an explanation given for why a ketogenic diet may lead to skin problems for a while, that being that fat and/or "toxins" are released from your stored fat as you use it as an energy source. This does kind of fit in with me because i'm sure i noticed a worsening of me skin after prolonged periods of not eating [basically starvation] which is when my stored fat would of been being used the most. If you google ketosis and atkins and skin problems/acne, along with lots of people noting improvements there are people also noting problems.


I need to look into sibo more really. I think i have seen people mentioning antibiotics but i have some kind of paranoia regarding them for one reaon or another


What do you mean proven? It's proven in the sense that GI = Glycemic (Glucose AKA Sugar) Index and Carbohydrates is a fancy term for "stuff-that-breaks-down-into-sugars-AKA-glucose-in-the-body."

Yes, it applies to everyone on this planet.

#15 uncle buck

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Posted 11 April 2011 - 05:11 AM

No acne at all for years, in fact my skin glows when it always used to be pale and lifeless. I don't eat stuff like frankfurts either and keep bacon and sodium in general low.

I'd suggest increasing fat and lowering protein, tuna is pretty low in fat compared to sardines or salmon for fish, and I never touched whey protein powder or any supplements. Not a fan of spinach either, the greens I eat are broccoli and bok choy / pak choy. I'm not sure what it is here exactly that works but there's my experience for you, and all these things make me feel good.

I also eat other fats like Avocado, Coconut and Olive Oil. (but not all at once)

#16 Riddled

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Posted 11 April 2011 - 01:20 PM

Thanks for the reply uncle buck.

chunkylard you know darn well what i meant. Thanks for letting me know what carbohydrates are.

So according to you everyone's acne is linked to the Glycemic Index of their diet.

It's that simple is it.

Muppet.



#17 alternativista

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Posted 11 April 2011 - 02:01 PM

QUOTE (Riddled @ Apr 11 2011, 02:20 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
So according to you everyone's acne is linked to the Glycemic Index of their diet.

It's that simple is it.


No, it's not that simple. There are many other ways diet affects acne. But the Glycemic impact of their diet habits do affect everyone. And in ways far more important than acne.

But how much it affects you varies with your physical fitness, physical activity, nutrients you consume, sleep, etc.

More info: http://www.acne.org/...es-t230714.html

But ketosis is not necessary. Not even low carb. What everyone should to do is eat meals/drinks /snacks that are not high GL. And some need to stick to low glycemic load meals/drinks/snacks. But like I said above, how strict you need to be depends on what else you do and your own personal issues.

#18 chunkylard

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Posted 11 April 2011 - 06:51 PM

QUOTE (Riddled @ Apr 11 2011, 02:20 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Thanks for the reply uncle buck.

chunkylard you know darn well what i meant. Thanks for letting me know what carbohydrates are.

So according to you everyone's acne is linked to the Glycemic Index of their diet.

It's that simple is it.

Muppet.


No, I didn't know what you meant. That's why I asked. Derp. rolleyes.gif Elaborate on your questions better.

Nowhere did I say that the Glycemic Load of your meals is the absolute bound-to-break-you-out cause. Acne is not entirely connected to the GL (Glycemic Load) you're eating, but it sure as hell contributes a lot. There are obviously a multitude of other factors that can contribute to acne.

Edited by chunkylard, 11 April 2011 - 06:53 PM.


#19 rfken319

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Posted 12 April 2011 - 07:27 AM

I am on ketogenic diet with lots of green veggies, coconut oil, fish oil, dark chocolate, olive oil for frying, fish, skinless chicken, tofu, or greek yogurt for protein. My acne seems to be clearing up even with almost no sleep at all (because of the high energy levels)! I can't wait to adjust, be back on a regular schedule, and finally become clear for life.

#20 Riddled

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Posted 18 April 2011 - 01:39 PM

Lucky you, it's alright for some. If the green veggies includes spinach btw i would try to eat it raw and in moderation if possible, in case you stick to ketosis, just with the kidneys an all that you never know.
Thanks for the replies.

chunkylard it's pointless me writing what i would say to you face to face.