81 posts in this topic

I don't really want to get into what I call "The Great Man Debate". This is what boils down to. Both men and women have testosterone, progesterone, and estrogen. Different proportions of those hormones in the womb and as we are going through puberty form the significant internal and external differences between men and women. Yes, if you completely suck yourself dry of testosterone you won't feel so great...but this applies to anyone. Both men and women need testosterone for muscle-building, sex drive, etc. However, there is that line where there is always TOO MUCH of a good thing.

DHT is one of the most potent forms of testosterone. Yet, too much of it causes BALDING, ACNE, EXCESSIVE LIBIDO, and here's the kicker LOW SPERM COUNT. Good lord, people, please tell me how low sperm, men who act like salivating dogs, and balding is manly. I don't care if you're pumping iron every day and have a sixteen pack...pus-filled cysts on your face, a Donald Trump combover in your early thirties, the inability to ever father children yet humping everything in sight....none of these things are hot. Or manly.

Hormone regulation is about finding a balance of hormones. If you are a man, yes, you don't want to take your testosterone down to zero. But you also don't want to be a horny horndog with acne who can't attract anyone. Sometimes a little less testosterone puts your body in an IDEAL hormone range and actually makes you more attractive. More testosterone does not equal more manly. IDEAL LEVELS of testosterone = manly. Acne is a sign those testosterone levels are NOT ideal.

Different strokes for different folks, but I know A LOT of women who are completely grossed out by little hygiene things. You know, not flossing your teeth. A little bad breath. A little body odor. Not washing your junk. Guess what ranks really high on the gross list? ACNE. SOMETHING THAT LOOKS LIKE A RAGING INFECTION ON YOUR FACE. If bodybuilding is that important to you...just realize...having a six pack and bulging arms doesn't compensate for a disease on your FACE which is what people have to look at 99% of the time!!!

Even as a woman who has (obviously) struggled with acne, in my completely hypocritical double standard, I'd take clear skin and a little flab over AcneManWithWashboardAbs any day of the week.

P.S. Accutane reduces testosterone.

So you say lifting weights would further make my acne worse?I've been trying to search some articles on this but they all give a mixed response.And how can i be reassured that giving up weight lifting would calm down my acne if not cure it? Because i had acne even when i didn't lift. At least weight lifting makes me feel good for that one hour...It makes me feel good about my body.I'd have to trade all those good feelings for clear skin (And i'm not even sure 100% if it really would give me better skin).

P.S-I don't lift weights to seek attention of the opposite sex.I do it to feel good about myself.Feel happy you know.You sure know how stifling acne is.You have to give up everything good in life just to battle it and even then you don't get 100% results.

Edited by Perseverance92

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accutane reduces testoterone?


Itchy red raised skin - dermatitis??

huge pores

indented scar

oils used for cooking

inflamed whiteheads & clogged pores

my balanced diet chart and skincare routine(medications taken & products used now)


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I don't really want to get into what I call "The Great Man Debate". This is what boils down to. Both men and women have testosterone, progesterone, and estrogen. Different proportions of those hormones in the womb and as we are going through puberty form the significant internal and external differences between men and women. Yes, if you completely suck yourself dry of testosterone you won't feel so great...but this applies to anyone. Both men and women need testosterone for muscle-building, sex drive, etc. However, there is that line where there is always TOO MUCH of a good thing.

DHT is one of the most potent forms of testosterone. Yet, too much of it causes BALDING, ACNE, EXCESSIVE LIBIDO, and here's the kicker LOW SPERM COUNT. Good lord, people, please tell me how low sperm, men who act like salivating dogs, and balding is manly. I don't care if you're pumping iron every day and have a sixteen pack...pus-filled cysts on your face, a Donald Trump combover in your early thirties, the inability to ever father children yet humping everything in sight....none of these things are hot. Or manly.

Hormone regulation is about finding a balance of hormones. If you are a man, yes, you don't want to take your testosterone down to zero. But you also don't want to be a horny horndog with acne who can't attract anyone. Sometimes a little less testosterone puts your body in an IDEAL hormone range and actually makes you more attractive. More testosterone does not equal more manly. IDEAL LEVELS of testosterone = manly. Acne is a sign those testosterone levels are NOT ideal.

Different strokes for different folks, but I know A LOT of women who are completely grossed out by little hygiene things. You know, not flossing your teeth. A little bad breath. A little body odor. Not washing your junk. Guess what ranks really high on the gross list? ACNE. SOMETHING THAT LOOKS LIKE A RAGING INFECTION ON YOUR FACE. If bodybuilding is that important to you...just realize...having a six pack and bulging arms doesn't compensate for a disease on your FACE which is what people have to look at 99% of the time!!!

Even as a woman who has (obviously) struggled with acne, in my completely hypocritical double standard, I'd take clear skin and a little flab over AcneManWithWashboardAbs any day of the week.

P.S. Accutane reduces testosterone.

I can attest to that about the lifting weights. I can either be skinny (and still lean with a low bodyfat) and be relatively clear, or go hard into weight lifting and bulking and have an awesome body but cystic acne. As much as it kills me, I stay skinny to prevent the acne.

I don't really want to get into what I call "The Great Man Debate". This is what boils down to. Both men and women have testosterone, progesterone, and estrogen. Different proportions of those hormones in the womb and as we are going through puberty form the significant internal and external differences between men and women. Yes, if you completely suck yourself dry of testosterone you won't feel so great...but this applies to anyone. Both men and women need testosterone for muscle-building, sex drive, etc. However, there is that line where there is always TOO MUCH of a good thing.

DHT is one of the most potent forms of testosterone. Yet, too much of it causes BALDING, ACNE, EXCESSIVE LIBIDO, and here's the kicker LOW SPERM COUNT. Good lord, people, please tell me how low sperm, men who act like salivating dogs, and balding is manly. I don't care if you're pumping iron every day and have a sixteen pack...pus-filled cysts on your face, a Donald Trump combover in your early thirties, the inability to ever father children yet humping everything in sight....none of these things are hot. Or manly.

Hormone regulation is about finding a balance of hormones. If you are a man, yes, you don't want to take your testosterone down to zero. But you also don't want to be a horny horndog with acne who can't attract anyone. Sometimes a little less testosterone puts your body in an IDEAL hormone range and actually makes you more attractive. More testosterone does not equal more manly. IDEAL LEVELS of testosterone = manly. Acne is a sign those testosterone levels are NOT ideal.

Different strokes for different folks, but I know A LOT of women who are completely grossed out by little hygiene things. You know, not flossing your teeth. A little bad breath. A little body odor. Not washing your junk. Guess what ranks really high on the gross list? ACNE. SOMETHING THAT LOOKS LIKE A RAGING INFECTION ON YOUR FACE. If bodybuilding is that important to you...just realize...having a six pack and bulging arms doesn't compensate for a disease on your FACE which is what people have to look at 99% of the time!!!

Even as a woman who has (obviously) struggled with acne, in my completely hypocritical double standard, I'd take clear skin and a little flab over AcneManWithWashboardAbs any day of the week.

P.S. Accutane reduces testosterone.

So you say lifting weights would further make my acne worse?I've been trying to search some articles on this but they all give a mixed response.And how can i be reassured that giving up weight lifting would calm down my acne if not cure it? Because i had acne even when i didn't lift. At least weight lifting makes me feel good for that one hour...It makes me feel good about my body.I'd have to trade all those good feelings for clear skin (And i'm not even sure 100% if it really would give me better skin).

P.S-I don't lift weights to seek attention of the opposite sex.I do it to feel good about myself.Feel happy you know.You sure know how stifling acne is.You have to give up everything good in life just to battle it and even then you don't get 100% results.

Lifting weights personally makes me acne worse. I have seen this always happen over my 8 years of lifting weights on and off. Keeping my test levels more stable by not lifting is better for my skin I have found out.

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Very instructive and complete post, thanks you a lot . (and thanks to Green gables for your relevant posts )

I will start this routine as soon i can (I'm a man, i will combine SawPalmetto and DIM, after what i read on this forum, it seems to be the more suitable man routine for acne caused by DHT), but actually, i have some questions about skin daily treatment :

I don't use tap water ( too much calcareous in my town) and therefore, i had to find a solution, and i use micellar water ( http://www.escentual.com/bioderma/bioderma019/ ) every morning and evenning , and then I apply Jojoba oil for hydratation.

Should I change this habit? I dunno what my micellar water pH ..

Thanks you to anyone who will take time to give me an answer :)

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hey could you discuss further how accutane reduces testonsterone?


Current Routine

Morning

Spironolactone (started 1/06/2014)

Evening

Isotrex 0.05mg gel (started 1/06/2014)

Other things that help: Sugar-free diet, a teaspoon of oily fish oil with added vitamin A + D3 every other day and a daily vitamin supplement.

Exercise: 30-45 minute brisk walk 4 times a week.


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I don't really want to get into what I call "The Great Man Debate". This is what boils down to. Both men and women have testosterone, progesterone, and estrogen. Different proportions of those hormones in the womb and as we are going through puberty form the significant internal and external differences between men and women. Yes, if you completely suck yourself dry of testosterone you won't feel so great...but this applies to anyone. Both men and women need testosterone for muscle-building, sex drive, etc. However, there is that line where there is always TOO MUCH of a good thing.

DHT is one of the most potent forms of testosterone. Yet, too much of it causes BALDING, ACNE, EXCESSIVE LIBIDO, and here's the kicker LOW SPERM COUNT. Good lord, people, please tell me how low sperm, men who act like salivating dogs, and balding is manly. I don't care if you're pumping iron every day and have a sixteen pack...pus-filled cysts on your face, a Donald Trump combover in your early thirties, the inability to ever father children yet humping everything in sight....none of these things are hot. Or manly.

Hormone regulation is about finding a balance of hormones. If you are a man, yes, you don't want to take your testosterone down to zero. But you also don't want to be a horny horndog with acne who can't attract anyone. Sometimes a little less testosterone puts your body in an IDEAL hormone range and actually makes you more attractive. More testosterone does not equal more manly. IDEAL LEVELS of testosterone = manly. Acne is a sign those testosterone levels are NOT ideal.

Different strokes for different folks, but I know A LOT of women who are completely grossed out by little hygiene things. You know, not flossing your teeth. A little bad breath. A little body odor. Not washing your junk. Guess what ranks really high on the gross list? ACNE. SOMETHING THAT LOOKS LIKE A RAGING INFECTION ON YOUR FACE. If bodybuilding is that important to you...just realize...having a six pack and bulging arms doesn't compensate for a disease on your FACE which is what people have to look at 99% of the time!!!

Even as a woman who has (obviously) struggled with acne, in my completely hypocritical double standard, I'd take clear skin and a little flab over AcneManWithWashboardAbs any day of the week.

P.S. Accutane reduces testosterone.

i see no one picked up the topic on green tea here.so i will.

u mentioned green tea effecting negatively.

so do u suggest discontinuing green tea?

not too much of course; but isn't 2 medium size cups of tea good for everyone in general.

(even for those with auto-immune disease)?


Itchy red raised skin - dermatitis??

huge pores

indented scar

oils used for cooking

inflamed whiteheads & clogged pores

my balanced diet chart and skincare routine(medications taken & products used now)


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Thank you very much :) i could get much informations which i didnt know!! And i got shocked by the danger of green tea... ;((( i need to quit drinking it T^T

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Thank you very much smile.png i could get much informations which i didnt know!! And i got shocked by the danger of green tea... ;((( i need to quit drinking it T^T

wait till u clarify.

green tea has several good effects.so always verfiy before u jump to conclusion.

welcome to this site but as a member older than u i suggest donot go about following every single piece of info here

(not just this thread i mean.any and every post should be verified.u dnt wanna blindly follow every single thread)

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Itchy red raised skin - dermatitis??

huge pores

indented scar

oils used for cooking

inflamed whiteheads & clogged pores

my balanced diet chart and skincare routine(medications taken & products used now)


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Yes,not everything should be believed.Take online information with a pinch of salt.I can cite various examples of mendacity,when following what i read did more harm than good.

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I posted the study that shows Accutane reduces testosterone in the research board. You can find it if you wish. I'm on a phone and can't find anything after the mods reorganized the forums.

You can also search for the green tea study that shows it increases DHT by 194% and testosterone by 74%. If you want the flavonoids from green tea there are more potent sources of flavonoids without caffeine.


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GreenGables

 


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I posted the study that shows Accutane reduces testosterone in the research board. You can find it if you wish. I'm on a phone and can't find anything after the mods reorganized the forums.

You can also search for the green tea study that shows it increases DHT by 194% and testosterone by 74%. If you want the flavonoids from green tea there are more potent sources of flavonoids without caffeine.

do u mean that for even if taken in moderation & for those without any auto-immune disorder/caffeine intolerance?

also, isn't a lil' caffeine suppose to be good(if one isn't intolerant)?


Itchy red raised skin - dermatitis??

huge pores

indented scar

oils used for cooking

inflamed whiteheads & clogged pores

my balanced diet chart and skincare routine(medications taken & products used now)


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Hi Green Gables,

I'm technically new to acne.org but have been an avid reader for many years, trying in vain to cure the acne I've had for the previous 10 years (23yearsold). Ive been to dermatologist after dermatologist and tried countless tablets and pills including antiobiotics (damn doctors) and the pill.. my last derm appointment resulted in tears and me walking out as the man had no inclination to even hear me about a hormonal imbalance that I'm sure I have, saying 'hormones fluctuate, its a myth' and simply insisting my last resort was accutane and id I didn't take i'd be left with this disease for the rest of my life. *cue the tears of anger and me walking out*..

anyway, since then I've been researching and researching what could be going on inside and am sure I have a hormonal imbalance. I started taking Dim about six months ago now and have seen huge improvements in my PMS acne, instead of cystic, raw acne along my jawline and chin I now suffer with a moderate outbreak in this area a week or so before. Due to timing and educating myself through numerous of your posts about hormonal acne, I believe I have low progesterone? Does this sound about right or am I on the wrong track do you think? Im definitely thinking of adding saw palmetto to the dim and zinc I take :). Should I look at a progesterone cream too or stick to two types of DHT inhibitors?

All the research can be incredibly overwhelming but I'm gradually making my way through your posts and connecting the dots :) id love to be able to go back to that derm and show I don't need accutane to be clear :)

Sorry for rambling.

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I posted the study that shows Accutane reduces testosterone in the research board. You can find it if you wish. I'm on a phone and can't find anything after the mods reorganized the forums.

You can also search for the green tea study that shows it increases DHT by 194% and testosterone by 74%. If you want the flavonoids from green tea there are more potent sources of flavonoids without caffeine.

Hi Green Gables,

I'm technically new to acne.org but have been an avid reader for many years, trying in vain to cure the acne I've had for the previous 10 years (23yearsold). Ive been to dermatologist after dermatologist and tried countless tablets and pills including antiobiotics (damn doctors) and the pill.. my last derm appointment resulted in tears and me walking out as the man had no inclination to even hear me about a hormonal imbalance that I'm sure I have, saying 'hormones fluctuate, its a myth' and simply insisting my last resort was accutane and id I didn't take i'd be left with this disease for the rest of my life. *cue the tears of anger and me walking out*..

anyway, since then I've been researching and researching what could be going on inside and am sure I have a hormonal imbalance. I started taking Dim about six months ago now and have seen huge improvements in my PMS acne, instead of cystic, raw acne along my jawline and chin I now suffer with a moderate outbreak in this area a week or so before. Due to timing and educating myself through numerous of your posts about hormonal acne, I believe I have low progesterone? Does this sound about right or am I on the wrong track do you think? Im definitely thinking of adding saw palmetto to the dim and zinc I take smile.png. Should I look at a progesterone cream too or stick to two types of DHT inhibitors?

All the research can be incredibly overwhelming but I'm gradually making my way through your posts and connecting the dots smile.png id love to be able to go back to that derm and show I don't need accutane to be clear smile.png

Sorry for rambling & also for the quoting of the previous comment, not sure of how this all works just yet :)

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I posted the study that shows Accutane reduces testosterone in the research board. You can find it if you wish. I'm on a phone and can't find anything after the mods reorganized the forums.

You can also search for the green tea study that shows it increases DHT by 194% and testosterone by 74%. If you want the flavonoids from green tea there are more potent sources of flavonoids without caffeine.

do u mean that for even if taken in moderation & for those without any auto-immune disorder/caffeine intolerance?

also, isn't a lil' caffeine suppose to be good(if one isn't intolerant)?

The study used moderate consumption in normal people without auto-immune disorders or "caffeine intolerance", whatever that is.

Look, caffeine stimulates the wrong types of hormones for acne sufferers. There are no real health benefits to caffeine. It's a stimulant that people use to cope with sleep deprivation or just to get a small high. Green tea itself has flavonoids, yes, which you can easily get from other caffeine-free sources.

It's kind of like how wine is touted as a source of antioxidants. Sure. You can also get more antioxidants from GRAPE JUICE...but no one wants to say that, because it's nice to think that you should get a nice buzz every evening 'cause you're getting your antioxidants too tongue.png.

I posted the study that shows Accutane reduces testosterone in the research board. You can find it if you wish. I'm on a phone and can't find anything after the mods reorganized the forums.

You can also search for the green tea study that shows it increases DHT by 194% and testosterone by 74%. If you want the flavonoids from green tea there are more potent sources of flavonoids without caffeine.

Hi Green Gables,

I'm technically new to acne.org but have been an avid reader for many years, trying in vain to cure the acne I've had for the previous 10 years (23yearsold). Ive been to dermatologist after dermatologist and tried countless tablets and pills including antiobiotics (damn doctors) and the pill.. my last derm appointment resulted in tears and me walking out as the man had no inclination to even hear me about a hormonal imbalance that I'm sure I have, saying 'hormones fluctuate, its a myth' and simply insisting my last resort was accutane and id I didn't take i'd be left with this disease for the rest of my life. *cue the tears of anger and me walking out*..

anyway, since then I've been researching and researching what could be going on inside and am sure I have a hormonal imbalance. I started taking Dim about six months ago now and have seen huge improvements in my PMS acne, instead of cystic, raw acne along my jawline and chin I now suffer with a moderate outbreak in this area a week or so before. Due to timing and educating myself through numerous of your posts about hormonal acne, I believe I have low progesterone? Does this sound about right or am I on the wrong track do you think? Im definitely thinking of adding saw palmetto to the dim and zinc I take smile.png. Should I look at a progesterone cream too or stick to two types of DHT inhibitors?

All the research can be incredibly overwhelming but I'm gradually making my way through your posts and connecting the dots smile.png id love to be able to go back to that derm and show I don't need accutane to be clear smile.png

Sorry for rambling & also for the quoting of the previous comment, not sure of how this all works just yet smile.png

DIM does 3 major things:

1) Speeds up your estrogen metabolism.

2) Increases "good" estrogen metabolites (2-hydroxy estrogens) and reduces "bad" estrogen metabolites (16-hydroxy estrogens)

3) Increases free testosterone in the body. Now, this may seem like a bit of a contradiction. Remember that hormones are either "bound" to a protein or circulating freely. What happens is when you speed up estrogen metabolism, it releases some testosterone off of proteins so it becomes "free" testosterone. So it doesn't increase the amount of testosterone, but it does change the proportion of bound/free testosterone.This is why DIM can be either good or bad, depending on what is going on in your body. If you found improvement on it, by all means continue it, though. But you should be educated on what DIM is doing. smile.png

In general, especially for females, I recommend trying anti-androgens before progesterone. Like DIM, progesterone can be a double-edged sword. If your progesterone is too low, you will have acne. However, if your progesterone is too high, you will also create acne. However reducing testosterone through anti-androgens hardly ever makes acne worse, and usually clears your skin. I would try anti-androgens (along with the DIM, since it improved you) for several months. If you don't see noticeable improvement, then I would look into progesterone.

Edited by Green Gables

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GreenGables

 


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I am giving saw palmetto a try, and I am currently taking 160 mg of saw palmetto every day. I know that the dosage of saw palmetto should be 360 mg, but I am scared because I am also taking Diane 35 + 50 mg zinc +50 mg pumpkin seed oil. I have been taking saw palmetto for 20 days and it,s too soon to say something but I ´ll keep updating.

Two days ago I received my blood test, and I had 6.5 of estradiol, and the doctor said to me that it`s very low (menopause) for my age ( I´m 43 years ), and it's very wierd for someone taking 2 mg of estradiol every day ( diane 35). In the past I wasn't low in estradiol and I also had acne, and I don´t know if there is some conection with acne.

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Eh, a lot of women lose estrogen approaching or during menopause. Saw palmetto and pumpkin seed oil do not affect estrogen. Spironolactone, however, is slightly estrogenic (meaning it will slightly increase estrogen indirectly).


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I posted the study that shows Accutane reduces testosterone in the research board. You can find it if you wish. I'm on a phone and can't find anything after the mods reorganized the forums.

You can also search for the green tea study that shows it increases DHT by 194% and testosterone by 74%. If you want the flavonoids from green tea there are more potent sources of flavonoids without caffeine.

do u mean that for even if taken in moderation & for those without any auto-immune disorder/caffeine intolerance?

also, isn't a lil' caffeine suppose to be good(if one isn't intolerant)?

The study used moderate consumption in normal people without auto-immune disorders or "caffeine intolerance", whatever that is.

Look, caffeine stimulates the wrong types of hormones for acne sufferers. There are no real health benefits to caffeine. It's a stimulant that people use to cope with sleep deprivation or just to get a small high. Green tea itself has flavonoids, yes, which you can easily get from other caffeine-free sources.

It's kind of like how wine is touted as a source of antioxidants. Sure. You can also get more antioxidants from GRAPE JUICE...but no one wants to say that, because it's nice to think that you should get a nice buzz every evening 'cause you're getting your antioxidants too tongue.png.

>

I posted the study that shows Accutane reduces testosterone in the research board. You can find it if you wish. I'm on a phone and can't find anything after the mods reorganized the forums.

You can also search for the green tea study that shows it increases DHT by 194% and testosterone by 74%. If you want the flavonoids from green tea there are more potent sources of flavonoids without caffeine.

Hi Green Gables,

I'm technically new to acne.org but have been an avid reader for many years, trying in vain to cure the acne I've had for the previous 10 years (23yearsold). Ive been to dermatologist after dermatologist and tried countless tablets and pills including antiobiotics (damn doctors) and the pill.. my last derm appointment resulted in tears and me walking out as the man had no inclination to even hear me about a hormonal imbalance that I'm sure I have, saying 'hormones fluctuate, its a myth' and simply insisting my last resort was accutane and id I didn't take i'd be left with this disease for the rest of my life. *cue the tears of anger and me walking out*..

anyway, since then I've been researching and researching what could be going on inside and am sure I have a hormonal imbalance. I started taking Dim about six months ago now and have seen huge improvements in my PMS acne, instead of cystic, raw acne along my jawline and chin I now suffer with a moderate outbreak in this area a week or so before. Due to timing and educating myself through numerous of your posts about hormonal acne, I believe I have low progesterone? Does this sound about right or am I on the wrong track do you think? Im definitely thinking of adding saw palmetto to the dim and zinc I take smile.png. Should I look at a progesterone cream too or stick to two types of DHT inhibitors?

All the research can be incredibly overwhelming but I'm gradually making my way through your posts and connecting the dots smile.png id love to be able to go back to that derm and show I don't need accutane to be clear smile.png

Sorry for rambling & also for the quoting of the previous comment, not sure of how this all works just yet smile.png

DIM does 3 major things:

1) Speeds up your estrogen metabolism.

2) Increases "good" estrogen metabolites (2-hydroxy estrogens) and reduces "bad" estrogen metabolites (16-hydroxy estrogens)

3) Increases free testosterone in the body. Now, this may seem like a bit of a contradiction. Remember that hormones are either "bound" to a protein or circulating freely. What happens is when you speed up estrogen metabolism, it releases some testosterone off of proteins so it becomes "free" testosterone. So it doesn't increase the amount of testosterone, but it does change the proportion of bound/free testosterone.This is why DIM can be either good or bad, depending on what is going on in your body. If you found improvement on it, by all means continue it, though. But you should be educated on what DIM is doing. smile.png

In general, especially for females, I recommend trying anti-androgens before progesterone. Like DIM, progesterone can be a double-edged sword. If your progesterone is too low, you will have acne. However, if your progesterone is too high, you will also create acne. However reducing testosterone through anti-androgens hardly ever makes acne worse, and usually clears your skin. I would try anti-androgens (along with the DIM, since it improved you) for several months. If you don't see noticeable improvement, then I would look into progesterone.

Thankyou for responding to such a rambling post :)

Ahh, this does make sense to me, before taking DIM I was plagued with all round all over breakouts, whereas now I just reallly get a bad breakout a week or so before and its usually around my chin and jawline, which Im guessing might be something to do with the increase of free testosterone, caused by the DIM, roaming around causing chaos as well as the monthly hormonal changes. Im just guessing though.

I've been taking Saw Palmetto for the past five or so days, so I'll see how that goes for the next 5-6 months. I might add another anti-androgen in a months or so and see what happens.

I saw your post about DIM breaking you out after being clear for soo long, thats sad :( though at least you know you can rely on Spiro to keep your hormones in check :)

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I have a question

You mentionned that you use CeraVe cleanser and lotion.

but theses products contains methylparaben and propylparaben is not theses chemical elements bad ?

thanks for your answer

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I have a question

You mentionned that you use CeraVe cleanser and lotion.

but theses products contains methylparaben and propylparaben is not theses chemical elements bad ?

thanks for your answer

It depends on who you ask. I think the anti-paraben hype is just that, hype. See this article for why.


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oh ok i see thanks.

I wanted to buy the moisturizer lotion of CeraVe with a SPF30 but i have a combinate/oily skin and i think this lotion is too hydrating for my face.

Do you have any product in mind wich could help?

I follow your regimen sawpalmetto 320mg + nettle root extract, stinging 250mg (i actually took DIM but stopped). I also take 30mg of zinc.

I'm just confuse about my face care regimen. i use a micellar solution sebium H2O bioderma http://www.beaute-test.com/sebium_h2o_peaux_mixtes_ou_grasses_-_sebium_bioderma.php morning and evening following by a moisturizing soft lotion.

You said it's important to only wash our face only once a day, so i should use CeraVe+distilled water the evenning and the micellar solution the morning ,don't I?

thanks again for your contribution !

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Introduction

You thought you would "grow out" of your acne and didn't? You're not alone. Many men and women suffer adult acne in their 20s, 30s, 40s, and beyond. Adults with acne often have hormonal imbalances that linger after puberty, and these imbalances create disfiguring acne.

Quick Review on Hormones

The main sex hormones are testosterone, estrogen, and progesterone. Men and women have all three hormones in the body at different proportions. A more general term for testosterones is androgens. When you see "androgens" just remember that it means testosterone hormones in general.

The Culprit: DHT

DHT, or Dihydrotestosterone, is a type of testosterone that is one of most potent androgens in the body. DHT is 2-3x more powerful than "regular" testosterone and 15-30x more powerful than other adrenal androgens. This means that small fluctuations in DHT can have enormous effects on the body.

DHT synthesizes in the skin, hair follicles, testes, prostate, ovaries, and adrenal glands. Excess DHT and/or DHT sensitivity has been linked to:

  • acne (men and women)
  • balding, hair loss, hair thinning (men and women)
  • excessive sex drive (men and women)
  • facial hair or excess body hair (women)
  • Polycystic Ovary Syndrome PCOS and endometriosis (women)
  • prostate problems (men)
  • low sperm count (men)
Why am I sensitive to DHT?

There is a lot of evidence to suggest that sensitivity to DHT is largely caused by genetics and the hormonal conditions of the womb while you were still a fetus. Genetics and prenatal hormone conditions work together to mold your adult hormonal state. Both are very powerful influences that a little ProActive is not going to fix.

But the real answer is: I don't know. Neither does your doctor. The fact is that treating a DHT sensitivity often clears acne. So I focus more on what can be done rather than why it happens.

Can I get a test that will tell me if DHT is causing my acne?

No. Medical testing for a sensitivity to DHT does not exist. You can get a test on your testosterone levels. Some people with acne actually have higher levels of androgens. But some have "normal" levels of androgens, yet still manifest symptoms.

Well then why should I treat my acne as if it's hormonal?

- You can completely prevent acne from occurring through hormonal treatment.

- Antibiotics are only a short-term fix.

- Accutane users find their acne coming back a few years later because the sebaceous glands grow back.

- Benzoyl peroxide and retinoids can't prevent deeper cystic acne, and the redness and peeling caused by these products are almost as bad as the acne itself.

How to reduce DHT

Reducing DHT involves avoiding DHT triggers in the food you consume, providing your body with the pre-hormone D3 so it can metabolize hormones efficiently, and using a DHT inhibitor to fight your built-in DHT sensitivity.

1. Eliminate dairy (milk, cheese, yogurt).

Dairy is naturally loaded with hormones (even organic dairy). Remember that cow's milk is made for baby calves to help them grow to maturity. It contains all sorts of growth hormones that only "grow acne" in adult humans. Most commercial dairy manufacturers also add synthetic hormones to keep the cows lactating constantly.

2. Eliminate sugar, refined carbs, and high loads of simple carbohydrates.

Both increase insulin levels which directly stimulate bad hormonal activity that leads to acne. What is a refined carb? Fruit juice. Soda. Candy. Chocolate bars. Crackers. Pretzels. Potato chips. Maple syrup. Sweet tea. Anything made with white flour (most breads and pastas). Anything with sugar added (many frozen or pre-packaged foods). You may be thinking, well what do I eat? Vegetables. Meats. Eggs. Whole grains in moderation. Whole fruits in moderation. Google the "paleo diet" for more ideas.

3. Eliminate coffee, energy drinks, soda, teas, and caffeine in general.

Study upon study has shown that caffeine, even in small amounts, stimulate bad insulin and hormonal activity that exacerbate acne, just like dairy and sugar. Kick the caffeine habit!!!

And what about tea? Many blends have a significant amount of caffeine. Many people on these forums tout green tea but I would stay away from it. Its negative hormonal activities outweigh its good features in my opinion. One recent study shows green tea increasing DHT by 194% and testosterone by 74%.

4. Reduce or eliminate alcohol.

Just google alcohol and acne. Not only can the chemicals in alcohol create acne, but alcohol is a huge stress on your liver, and when your liver suffers, it purges itself through your skin.

4. Get adequate sun exposure.

Vitamin D3 is not really a vitamin, it is a pre-hormone. Your body cannot regulate hormones without D3.

Many acne sufferers are in a habit of avoiding the sun, slathering on sunscreen, or simply live indoor lifestyles. Important facts about vitamin D3:

  • Dairy is fortified with vitamin D2, which is not the vitamin D3 you need for hormone regulation.
  • You cannot get D3 when you are blocking UVB light with sunscreen or makeup.
  • Glass blocks the UVB rays required to produce D3 (so sitting in the car or by a sunny window don't count)
  • The prescription shots are vitamin D2.
I either recommend a lot of outdoor sun exposure, or if you must take a pill:

  • 5,000 to 15,000 IU of vitamin D3 a day
  • Take it with an omega-3 supplement (fish oil), because D3 is not absorbed from a pill without good fats taken at the same time
5. Stop using "workout" supplements.

Many workout supplements and protein powders (especially whey protein, which is dairy!) are designed to stimulate androgenic activity, which supposedly helps you build muscle faster. Unfortunately too much androgenic activity = acne. If you don't want acne, you may have to accept that professional bodybuilding is not in your future.

6. Women: Pay attention to the type of birth control you are using.

With birth control you are putting hormones directly into your body. This has HUGE effects on acne. All pills/implants contain some type of progestin (a synthetic form of progesterone). If that progestin is highly androgenic, you may as well be throwing gasoline on the acne fire. I have made a separate post on this topic:

7. Take anti-androgen drugs or herbal supplements.

This is ESSENTIAL to clearing hormonal acne. Even if you fix everything else, you need to attack the DHT directly.

An anti-androgen mutes some of the DHT activity in your body so that it stops creating acne. If you have a DHT sensitivity problem, your body is freaking out every time your DHT spikes a little bit. SO many things spike DHT on a daily basis. Eating. Exercise. Sex. Stress. Basically LIFE spikes your DHT! This means...you guessed it...you have acne all the time. You have to mute some of this activity so your body stops having "acne freak outs".

The key to this step is PATIENCE and remembering that it is PREVENTION. Anti-androgens prevent new acne. They don't make existing zits disappear any faster.

PRESCRIPTION ROUTE

Women.

The most effective anti-androgen is prescription oral spironolactone. Most women succeed on a daily dose of 50mg - 100mg. It is hard to find a doctor that will prescribe spiro for acne. I recommend printing this website out and bringing it into your appointment. It describes how spiro is used for acne and cites medical journals. If your dermatologist still will not prescribe it, I recommend switching to an endocrinologist or ob-gyn, who tend to be more educated in hormonal issues.

Men. Your prescription options are:

  • Topical spironolactone. You cannot get oral spiro for acne because it is too strong for males. However, you can get spiro cream for acne with a prescription. (You can also order the over-the-counter hairloss version of the cream, which is perfectly safe to use on your face.)
  • Finasteride (also known as Propecia or Proscar) is commonly prescribed to treat balding (which is also caused by DHT). If you already have a balding problem, a nice side effect of this medication is it can clear up acne.

HERBAL ROUTE

There are several plants that have anti-androgenic effects. You will get better results and less side effects when you combine two or more different plant types. I cannot stress this enough. Taking large doses of saw palmetto will not help nearly as much as taking moderate doses of multiple plants.

You must use standardized extract supplements ("whole herb" supplements are not potent enough).

  • Saw palmetto
  • Stinging nettle
  • Pygeum
  • Pumpkin seed oil
  • Beta sitosterol
Men: Total dosage of all anti-DHT herbs combined should range between 320mg - 1000mg daily.

Women: You should only be taking herbs if you are NOT taking spironolactone. Total dosage of all anti-DHT herbs combined should range between 640mg - 1500mg daily.

I will say this again. You need to combine different plant types and customize your dosages to work with your body. Many people give up on herbal anti-androgens because they do not combine plant types, take too small of a total dose, or take too large of a dose of one plant.

Okay, I'm doing everything. How long do I have to wait?

It depends on how severe your acne is, how messed up your hormones are, and how strictly you follow all of the recommendations. I had severe nodular/cystic acne that took 8 months on 100mg of spironolactone to resolve. For the first 4-5 months, my skin looked EXACTLY THE SAME as when I started. If that's not discouraging, I don't know what is.

Hormones are SLOW. Do not expect that you can be "tweaking" your regimen every week. Basically start from a good place, and slog through. If you don't see any improvements at about 4 months, then consider making changes.

Can I speed this along?

There really is not a quick fix for hormonal issues. For various reasons that I will not go into here because it would take far too much time, I DO NOT recommend combining hormonal treatment with antibiotics, retinoids, or benzoyl peroxide products.

How should I wash my face?

Less is more. The short version is that your skin needs an ideal pH level of 5.5 to fight off infection and heal itself. Get above or below that and your skin suffers.

Most of you wash your face with alkaline city or well water, then you use an alkaline cleanser, then you slather on some acne product that is too alkaline or too acidic. Some of you do this 2-3 times a day. What you are really doing is leaving your skin in a disrupted state...all the time.

(By the way, the marketing term "pH balanced" is crap. It's not regulated. It doesn't mean anything. Companies can slap this on whatever they want.)

When I was going through hormonal treatment, this is the exact regimen I followed:

  • Cleanse skin once a day with distilled water (this has a neutral pH) and CeraVe cleanser
  • Moisturize once a day with CeraVe Hydrating Lotion
  • Wear makeup/sunscreen as little as possible
  • 30 minutes of sun exposure daily
  • No caffeine, alcohol, dairy, or sugar. Diet low in refined carbs.
How did it work for you?

How long did it take you to have clear skin?

I went from severe acne to zero zits after 8 months of following all of the steps above. It can be a very discouraging process. At month 4, my skin looked about the same as at month 1. But between month 4 and month 8, I saw zits slowly disappear. Expect this. The changes are slow. It is worth it in the end.

How bad was your acne?

My acne was graded by several dermatologists as severe. On the Leeds scale I was an 8 (out of 10), on the Cooks scale a 7 (out of 8), and on the Pillsbury scale a 4 (out or 4). After 8 months following the steps above, my skin was completely clear of active lesions. My exact regimen is as follows:

  • 100mg of spironolactone daily
  • Washing face once a day with distilled water and CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser
  • Moisturizing with CeraVe Moisturizing Lotion
  • NO caffeine, dairy, and sugar. Diet generally low in refined carbs.
  • 30 minutes sun exposure daily (no sunscreen)
What treatments failed you?

  • Oral and topical antibiotics: Cephalexin, Amoxicillin, Tetracycline, Doxycycline, Clindamyacin, Minocycyline, Azithromycin
  • Topical retinoids: Differin, Retin-A Micro, Retin-A
  • Benzoyl peroxide
  • Acids: salicylic acid (BHA), glycolic acid (AHA), mandelic acid, lactic acid
  • Light therapy: blue light, red light, infrared light
  • Exfoliation regimens: Clarisonic, dry brushing, scrubs
  • Washing regimens: Oil Cleansing Method, water-only method
  • Vitamin regimens: zinc, vitamin A, vitamin B5, MSM, probiotics, digestive enzymes, fish oils, omega fats, iodine

Will I have to take an anti-androgen long-term?

I have to. I experimented with not taking mine on vacations and have broken out again.

How is everything going now?

My skin remains clear. I currently follow the same simple cleansing regimen, take my anti-androgen daily, and get adequate sun exposure. I never drink caffeine, however I now allow myself some dairy products and occasional desserts. I only wish I had known about the hormonal causes of acne sooner.

Outside reading:

Do Milk and Sugar Cause Acne? By Dr. Mark Hyman in the Huffington Post

Female Acne and Hormones By Dr. Geoffrey Redmond and the Hormone Help Center of New York

Progesterone: The Almost Forgotten Hormone By Energetic Nutrition and citing Dr. John Lee

Saw palmetto reduced DHT levels by 32% in this study.

Edited by jlcampi

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Yes, when you give a one pound rat a dose of any drug at 250 times the human exposure dose, the rat is going to get sick.

Early concerns regarding the potential link between breast cancer and spironolactone use was first raised in 1975, with no data definitively demonstrating a correlation since the question has been posed. It is recommended that spironolactone be avoided in women with an increased risk for breast cancer or estrogen-related tumors (either through personal or family history).31 The concerns stemmed from a report of breast tumors in rodents, with no proven association noted in humans. In the rodent study, two years of ingesting spironolactone (at 25–250 times the exposure dose in humans) resulted in benign adenomas of the thyroid and testes, malignant mammary tumors, and proliferative changes in the liver.31 The potential for spironolactone-related breast cancer was also raised in 1975 after a case report of breast carcinoma that occurred in five women who were concurrently using several medications, including spironolactone.32,33 This led the manufacturer to recommend avoiding unnecessary long-term use in a black box warning.31

The potential for spironolactone to induce estrogen-dependent malignancies still remains controversial. However, many believe there is not sufficient evidence to suggest spironolactone has a direct causal link to the development of breast cancer. Another study of 1,475 individuals prescribed spironolactone and followed for 3 to 7 years reported nine cases of breast cancer compared with an age-specific rate of 8.3 cases.34 Another study showing similar results based on data from 461 person-years during three years of follow-up after spironolactone exposure demonstrated no relationship between spironolactone use and breast cancer.31 Five case-controlled studies have also shown no overall increase in the relative risk for breast carcinoma.35 The data suggests that there is no definitive documented association between breast carcinoma and spironolactone ingestion after more than 30 years of spironolactone availability in the marketplace.36

To anyone reading this, jlcampi is a brand-new forum member who has decided the best way to make his debut on the sorry "forum scene" is to spam existing posts and tell everyone that the Paleo diet is the fix for all your troubles. I will not be responding further, or "feeding the troll", because the flaws in his logic are too numerous to count and frankly not worth my time. If you have questions about hormonal acne, please feel free to PM me.

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GreenGables

 


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Introduction

You thought you would "grow out" of your acne and didn't? You're not alone. Many men and women suffer adult acne in their 20s, 30s, 40s, and beyond. Adults with acne often have hormonal imbalances that linger after puberty, and these imbalances create disfiguring acne.

Quick Review on Hormones

The main sex hormones are testosterone, estrogen, and progesterone. Men and women have all three hormones in the body at different proportions. A more general term for testosterones is androgens. When you see "androgens" just remember that it means testosterone hormones in general.

The Culprit: DHT

DHT, or Dihydrotestosterone, is a type of testosterone that is one of most potent androgens in the body. DHT is 2-3x more powerful than "regular" testosterone and 15-30x more powerful than other adrenal androgens. This means that small fluctuations in DHT can have enormous effects on the body.

DHT synthesizes in the skin, hair follicles, testes, prostate, ovaries, and adrenal glands. Excess DHT and/or DHT sensitivity has been linked to:

  • acne (men and women)
  • balding, hair loss, hair thinning (men and women)
  • excessive sex drive (men and women)
  • facial hair or excess body hair (women)
  • Polycystic Ovary Syndrome PCOS and endometriosis (women)
  • prostate problems (men)
  • low sperm count (men)
Why am I sensitive to DHT?

There is a lot of evidence to suggest that sensitivity to DHT is largely caused by genetics and the hormonal conditions of the womb while you were still a fetus. Genetics and prenatal hormone conditions work together to mold your adult hormonal state. Both are very powerful influences that a little ProActive is not going to fix.

But the real answer is: I don't know. Neither does your doctor. The fact is that treating a DHT sensitivity often clears acne. So I focus more on what can be done rather than why it happens.

Can I get a test that will tell me if DHT is causing my acne?

No. Medical testing for a sensitivity to DHT does not exist. You can get a test on your testosterone levels. Some people with acne actually have higher levels of androgens. But some have "normal" levels of androgens, yet still manifest symptoms.

Well then why should I treat my acne as if it's hormonal?

- You can completely prevent acne from occurring through hormonal treatment.

- Antibiotics are only a short-term fix.

- Accutane users find their acne coming back a few years later because the sebaceous glands grow back.

- Benzoyl peroxide and retinoids can't prevent deeper cystic acne, and the redness and peeling caused by these products are almost as bad as the acne itself.

How to reduce DHT

Reducing DHT involves avoiding DHT triggers in the food you consume, providing your body with the pre-hormone D3 so it can metabolize hormones efficiently, and using a DHT inhibitor to fight your built-in DHT sensitivity.

1. Eliminate dairy (milk, cheese, yogurt).

Dairy is naturally loaded with hormones (even organic dairy). Remember that cow's milk is made for baby calves to help them grow to maturity. It contains all sorts of growth hormones that only "grow acne" in adult humans. Most commercial dairy manufacturers also add synthetic hormones to keep the cows lactating constantly.

2. Eliminate sugar, refined carbs, and high loads of simple carbohydrates.

Both increase insulin levels which directly stimulate bad hormonal activity that leads to acne. What is a refined carb? Fruit juice. Soda. Candy. Chocolate bars. Crackers. Pretzels. Potato chips. Maple syrup. Sweet tea. Anything made with white flour (most breads and pastas). Anything with sugar added (many frozen or pre-packaged foods). You may be thinking, well what do I eat? Vegetables. Meats. Eggs. Whole grains in moderation. Whole fruits in moderation. Google the "paleo diet" for more ideas.

3. Eliminate coffee, energy drinks, soda, teas, and caffeine in general.

Study upon study has shown that caffeine, even in small amounts, stimulate bad insulin and hormonal activity that exacerbate acne, just like dairy and sugar. Kick the caffeine habit!!!

And what about tea? Many blends have a significant amount of caffeine. Many people on these forums tout green tea but I would stay away from it. Its negative hormonal activities outweigh its good features in my opinion. One recent study shows green tea increasing DHT by 194% and testosterone by 74%.

4. Reduce or eliminate alcohol.

Just google alcohol and acne. Not only can the chemicals in alcohol create acne, but alcohol is a huge stress on your liver, and when your liver suffers, it purges itself through your skin.

4. Get adequate sun exposure.

Vitamin D3 is not really a vitamin, it is a pre-hormone. Your body cannot regulate hormones without D3.

Many acne sufferers are in a habit of avoiding the sun, slathering on sunscreen, or simply live indoor lifestyles. Important facts about vitamin D3:

  • Dairy is fortified with vitamin D2, which is not the vitamin D3 you need for hormone regulation.
  • You cannot get D3 when you are blocking UVB light with sunscreen or makeup.
  • Glass blocks the UVB rays required to produce D3 (so sitting in the car or by a sunny window don't count)
  • The prescription shots are vitamin D2.
I either recommend a lot of outdoor sun exposure, or if you must take a pill:

  • 5,000 to 15,000 IU of vitamin D3 a day
  • Take it with an omega-3 supplement (fish oil), because D3 is not absorbed from a pill without good fats taken at the same time
5. Stop using "workout" supplements.

Many workout supplements and protein powders (especially whey protein, which is dairy!) are designed to stimulate androgenic activity, which supposedly helps you build muscle faster. Unfortunately too much androgenic activity = acne. If you don't want acne, you may have to accept that professional bodybuilding is not in your future.

6. Women: Pay attention to the type of birth control you are using.

With birth control you are putting hormones directly into your body. This has HUGE effects on acne. All pills/implants contain some type of progestin (a synthetic form of progesterone). If that progestin is highly androgenic, you may as well be throwing gasoline on the acne fire. I have made a separate post on this topic:

7. Take anti-androgen drugs or herbal supplements.

This is ESSENTIAL to clearing hormonal acne. Even if you fix everything else, you need to attack the DHT directly.

An anti-androgen mutes some of the DHT activity in your body so that it stops creating acne. If you have a DHT sensitivity problem, your body is freaking out every time your DHT spikes a little bit. SO many things spike DHT on a daily basis. Eating. Exercise. Sex. Stress. Basically LIFE spikes your DHT! This means...you guessed it...you have acne all the time. You have to mute some of this activity so your body stops having "acne freak outs".

The key to this step is PATIENCE and remembering that it is PREVENTION. Anti-androgens prevent new acne. They don't make existing zits disappear any faster.

PRESCRIPTION ROUTE

Women.

The most effective anti-androgen is prescription oral spironolactone. Most women succeed on a daily dose of 50mg - 100mg. It is hard to find a doctor that will prescribe spiro for acne. I recommend printing this website out and bringing it into your appointment. It describes how spiro is used for acne and cites medical journals. If your dermatologist still will not prescribe it, I recommend switching to an endocrinologist or ob-gyn, who tend to be more educated in hormonal issues.

Men. Your prescription options are:

  • Topical spironolactone. You cannot get oral spiro for acne because it is too strong for males. However, you can get spiro cream for acne with a prescription. (You can also order the over-the-counter hairloss version of the cream, which is perfectly safe to use on your face.)
  • Finasteride (also known as Propecia or Proscar) is commonly prescribed to treat balding (which is also caused by DHT). If you already have a balding problem, a nice side effect of this medication is it can clear up acne.

HERBAL ROUTE

There are several plants that have anti-androgenic effects. You will get better results and less side effects when you combine two or more different plant types. I cannot stress this enough. Taking large doses of saw palmetto will not help nearly as much as taking moderate doses of multiple plants.

You must use standardized extract supplements ("whole herb" supplements are not potent enough).

  • Saw palmetto
  • Stinging nettle
  • Pygeum
  • Pumpkin seed oil
  • Beta sitosterol
Men: Total dosage of all anti-DHT herbs combined should range between 320mg - 1000mg daily.

Women: You should only be taking herbs if you are NOT taking spironolactone. Total dosage of all anti-DHT herbs combined should range between 640mg - 1500mg daily.

I will say this again. You need to combine different plant types and customize your dosages to work with your body. Many people give up on herbal anti-androgens because they do not combine plant types, take too small of a total dose, or take too large of a dose of one plant.

Okay, I'm doing everything. How long do I have to wait?

It depends on how severe your acne is, how messed up your hormones are, and how strictly you follow all of the recommendations. I had severe nodular/cystic acne that took 8 months on 100mg of spironolactone to resolve. For the first 4-5 months, my skin looked EXACTLY THE SAME as when I started. If that's not discouraging, I don't know what is.

Hormones are SLOW. Do not expect that you can be "tweaking" your regimen every week. Basically start from a good place, and slog through. If you don't see any improvements at about 4 months, then consider making changes.

Can I speed this along?

There really is not a quick fix for hormonal issues. For various reasons that I will not go into here because it would take far too much time, I DO NOT recommend combining hormonal treatment with antibiotics, retinoids, or benzoyl peroxide products.

How should I wash my face?

Less is more. The short version is that your skin needs an ideal pH level of 5.5 to fight off infection and heal itself. Get above or below that and your skin suffers.

Most of you wash your face with alkaline city or well water, then you use an alkaline cleanser, then you slather on some acne product that is too alkaline or too acidic. Some of you do this 2-3 times a day. What you are really doing is leaving your skin in a disrupted state...all the time.

(By the way, the marketing term "pH balanced" is crap. It's not regulated. It doesn't mean anything. Companies can slap this on whatever they want.)

When I was going through hormonal treatment, this is the exact regimen I followed:

  • Cleanse skin once a day with distilled water (this has a neutral pH) and CeraVe cleanser
  • Moisturize once a day with CeraVe Hydrating Lotion
  • Wear makeup/sunscreen as little as possible
  • 30 minutes of sun exposure daily
  • No caffeine, alcohol, dairy, or sugar. Diet low in refined carbs.
How did it work for you?

How long did it take you to have clear skin?

I went from severe acne to zero zits after 8 months of following all of the steps above. It can be a very discouraging process. At month 4, my skin looked about the same as at month 1. But between month 4 and month 8, I saw zits slowly disappear. Expect this. The changes are slow. It is worth it in the end.

How bad was your acne?

My acne was graded by several dermatologists as severe. On the Leeds scale I was an 8 (out of 10), on the Cooks scale a 7 (out of 8), and on the Pillsbury scale a 4 (out or 4). After 8 months following the steps above, my skin was completely clear of active lesions. My exact regimen is as follows:

  • 100mg of spironolactone daily
  • Washing face once a day with distilled water and CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser
  • Moisturizing with CeraVe Moisturizing Lotion
  • NO caffeine, dairy, and sugar. Diet generally low in refined carbs.
  • 30 minutes sun exposure daily (no sunscreen)
What treatments failed you?

  • Oral and topical antibiotics: Cephalexin, Amoxicillin, Tetracycline, Doxycycline, Clindamyacin, Minocycyline, Azithromycin
  • Topical retinoids: Differin, Retin-A Micro, Retin-A
  • Benzoyl peroxide
  • Acids: salicylic acid (BHA), glycolic acid (AHA), mandelic acid, lactic acid
  • Light therapy: blue light, red light, infrared light
  • Exfoliation regimens: Clarisonic, dry brushing, scrubs
  • Washing regimens: Oil Cleansing Method, water-only method
  • Vitamin regimens: zinc, vitamin A, vitamin B5, MSM, probiotics, digestive enzymes, fish oils, omega fats, iodine

Will I have to take an anti-androgen long-term?

I have to. I experimented with not taking mine on vacations and have broken out again.

How is everything going now?

My skin remains clear. I currently follow the same simple cleansing regimen, take my anti-androgen daily, and get adequate sun exposure. I never drink caffeine, however I now allow myself some dairy products and occasional desserts. I only wish I had known about the hormonal causes of acne sooner.

Outside reading:

Do Milk and Sugar Cause Acne? By Dr. Mark Hyman in the Huffington Post

Female Acne and Hormones By Dr. Geoffrey Redmond and the Hormone Help Center of New York

Progesterone: The Almost Forgotten Hormone By Energetic Nutrition and citing Dr. John Lee

Saw palmetto reduced DHT levels by 32% in this study.

Wow you put a lot of work into this. Some of this is absolutely correct. Unfortunately in many cases it's not.

Quickly note on testosterone metabolism.

Testosterone is metabolized to estradiol through the aromatase pathway.

Testosterone is metabolized to dihydrotestosterone (DHT) through the 5 alpha reductase pathway.

DHT does not stimulate sebum production. Testosterone does.

DHT does not cause PCOS. Elevated Estradiol/Progesterone deficiency does.

Elevated sugar increases insulin which stimulates sebum production by increasing fat production.

Coffee and sugar based drinks increase aromatase activity that elevate estradiol not DHT

DHT is not your enemy, sugar and poor diet is.

Spironactolone will only be used chronically in corrective hormone therapy by the low information physician. This medication will bind to aldosterone receptors causing a change in mineral balance (hydration) in addition to lowering testosterone. This is not a mild medicine and there are many other ways of dealing with hormone imbalances.

SPIRO WHEN USED LONG TERM IN RODENT MODELS CAUSES TUMORS.

Work on your reading comprehension, bud. Some points in your post are just flat out wrong, and for others you just ripped a statement out of a paragraph and ignored its context. When it comes to hormones, nothing is as black and white as your short and choppy statements would leave someone to believe.

GreenGables does an excellent job of interpreting the tremendous amounts of often conflicting information on hormonal acne and has helped several people with consistent and effective hormonal treatment advice. If you're a woman looking for helping treating hormonal acne, her advice is about as solid as you can get off of any online forum.

Edited by CBIOT13

People never cease to amaze me. Some with their brilliance, others with their ignorance. eusa_think.gif

Here's A Few Acne.org Threads Of Mine You May Find Useful/Interesting (updated 7/25/13)

-- DIY Apple Cider Vinegar Toner

-- How to Ice Inflammed or Picked at Cysts

-- Milk of Magnesia Uses

Other Threads Worth Looking At

-- Oily Skin Research Thread: This shows some of our previous efforts and explains the mechanisms behind oily skin.

-- My failed but enlightening experiment going the "less is more" route, aka "The Caveman Routine"


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Introduction

You thought you would "grow out" of your acne and didn't? You're not alone. Many men and women suffer adult acne in their 20s, 30s, 40s, and beyond. Adults with acne often have hormonal imbalances that linger after puberty, and these imbalances create disfiguring acne.

Quick Review on Hormones

The main sex hormones are testosterone, estrogen, and progesterone. Men and women have all three hormones in the body at different proportions. A more general term for testosterones is androgens. When you see "androgens" just remember that it means testosterone hormones in general.

The Culprit: DHT

DHT, or Dihydrotestosterone, is a type of testosterone that is one of most potent androgens in the body. DHT is 2-3x more powerful than "regular" testosterone and 15-30x more powerful than other adrenal androgens. This means that small fluctuations in DHT can have enormous effects on the body.

DHT synthesizes in the skin, hair follicles, testes, prostate, ovaries, and adrenal glands. Excess DHT and/or DHT sensitivity has been linked to:

  • acne (men and women)
  • balding, hair loss, hair thinning (men and women)
  • excessive sex drive (men and women)
  • facial hair or excess body hair (women)
  • Polycystic Ovary Syndrome PCOS and endometriosis (women)
  • prostate problems (men)
  • low sperm count (men)
Why am I sensitive to DHT?

There is a lot of evidence to suggest that sensitivity to DHT is largely caused by genetics and the hormonal conditions of the womb while you were still a fetus. Genetics and prenatal hormone conditions work together to mold your adult hormonal state. Both are very powerful influences that a little ProActive is not going to fix.

But the real answer is: I don't know. Neither does your doctor. The fact is that treating a DHT sensitivity often clears acne. So I focus more on what can be done rather than why it happens.

Can I get a test that will tell me if DHT is causing my acne?

No. Medical testing for a sensitivity to DHT does not exist. You can get a test on your testosterone levels. Some people with acne actually have higher levels of androgens. But some have "normal" levels of androgens, yet still manifest symptoms.

Well then why should I treat my acne as if it's hormonal?

- You can completely prevent acne from occurring through hormonal treatment.

- Antibiotics are only a short-term fix.

- Accutane users find their acne coming back a few years later because the sebaceous glands grow back.

- Benzoyl peroxide and retinoids can't prevent deeper cystic acne, and the redness and peeling caused by these products are almost as bad as the acne itself.

How to reduce DHT

Reducing DHT involves avoiding DHT triggers in the food you consume, providing your body with the pre-hormone D3 so it can metabolize hormones efficiently, and using a DHT inhibitor to fight your built-in DHT sensitivity.

1. Eliminate dairy (milk, cheese, yogurt).

Dairy is naturally loaded with hormones (even organic dairy). Remember that cow's milk is made for baby calves to help them grow to maturity. It contains all sorts of growth hormones that only "grow acne" in adult humans. Most commercial dairy manufacturers also add synthetic hormones to keep the cows lactating constantly.

2. Eliminate sugar, refined carbs, and high loads of simple carbohydrates.

Both increase insulin levels which directly stimulate bad hormonal activity that leads to acne. What is a refined carb? Fruit juice. Soda. Candy. Chocolate bars. Crackers. Pretzels. Potato chips. Maple syrup. Sweet tea. Anything made with white flour (most breads and pastas). Anything with sugar added (many frozen or pre-packaged foods). You may be thinking, well what do I eat? Vegetables. Meats. Eggs. Whole grains in moderation. Whole fruits in moderation. Google the "paleo diet" for more ideas.

3. Eliminate coffee, energy drinks, soda, teas, and caffeine in general.

Study upon study has shown that caffeine, even in small amounts, stimulate bad insulin and hormonal activity that exacerbate acne, just like dairy and sugar. Kick the caffeine habit!!!

And what about tea? Many blends have a significant amount of caffeine. Many people on these forums tout green tea but I would stay away from it. Its negative hormonal activities outweigh its good features in my opinion. One recent study shows green tea increasing DHT by 194% and testosterone by 74%.

4. Reduce or eliminate alcohol.

Just google alcohol and acne. Not only can the chemicals in alcohol create acne, but alcohol is a huge stress on your liver, and when your liver suffers, it purges itself through your skin.

4. Get adequate sun exposure.

Vitamin D3 is not really a vitamin, it is a pre-hormone. Your body cannot regulate hormones without D3.

Many acne sufferers are in a habit of avoiding the sun, slathering on sunscreen, or simply live indoor lifestyles. Important facts about vitamin D3:

  • Dairy is fortified with vitamin D2, which is not the vitamin D3 you need for hormone regulation.
  • You cannot get D3 when you are blocking UVB light with sunscreen or makeup.
  • Glass blocks the UVB rays required to produce D3 (so sitting in the car or by a sunny window don't count)
  • The prescription shots are vitamin D2.
I either recommend a lot of outdoor sun exposure, or if you must take a pill:
  • 5,000 to 15,000 IU of vitamin D3 a day
  • Take it with an omega-3 supplement (fish oil), because D3 is not absorbed from a pill without good fats taken at the same time
5. Stop using "workout" supplements.

Many workout supplements and protein powders (especially whey protein, which is dairy!) are designed to stimulate androgenic activity, which supposedly helps you build muscle faster. Unfortunately too much androgenic activity = acne. If you don't want acne, you may have to accept that professional bodybuilding is not in your future.

6. Women: Pay attention to the type of birth control you are using.

With birth control you are putting hormones directly into your body. This has HUGE effects on acne. All pills/implants contain some type of progestin (a synthetic form of progesterone). If that progestin is highly androgenic, you may as well be throwing gasoline on the acne fire. I have made a separate post on this topic:

7. Take anti-androgen drugs or herbal supplements.

This is ESSENTIAL to clearing hormonal acne. Even if you fix everything else, you need to attack the DHT directly.

An anti-androgen mutes some of the DHT activity in your body so that it stops creating acne. If you have a DHT sensitivity problem, your body is freaking out every time your DHT spikes a little bit. SO many things spike DHT on a daily basis. Eating. Exercise. Sex. Stress. Basically LIFE spikes your DHT! This means...you guessed it...you have acne all the time. You have to mute some of this activity so your body stops having "acne freak outs".

The key to this step is PATIENCE and remembering that it is PREVENTION. Anti-androgens prevent new acne. They don't make existing zits disappear any faster.

PRESCRIPTION ROUTE

Women.

The most effective anti-androgen is prescription oral spironolactone. Most women succeed on a daily dose of 50mg - 100mg. It is hard to find a doctor that will prescribe spiro for acne. I recommend printing this website out and bringing it into your appointment. It describes how spiro is used for acne and cites medical journals. If your dermatologist still will not prescribe it, I recommend switching to an endocrinologist or ob-gyn, who tend to be more educated in hormonal issues.

Men. Your prescription options are:

  • Topical spironolactone. You cannot get oral spiro for acne because it is too strong for males. However, you can get spiro cream for acne with a prescription. (You can also order the over-the-counter hairloss version of the cream, which is perfectly safe to use on your face.)
  • Finasteride (also known as Propecia or Proscar) is commonly prescribed to treat balding (which is also caused by DHT). If you already have a balding problem, a nice side effect of this medication is it can clear up acne.
HERBAL ROUTE

There are several plants that have anti-androgenic effects. You will get better results and less side effects when you combine two or more different plant types. I cannot stress this enough. Taking large doses of saw palmetto will not help nearly as much as taking moderate doses of multiple plants.

You must use standardized extract supplements ("whole herb" supplements are not potent enough).

  • Saw palmetto
  • Stinging nettle
  • Pygeum
  • Pumpkin seed oil
  • Beta sitosterol
Men: Total dosage of all anti-DHT herbs combined should range between 320mg - 1000mg daily.

Women: You should only be taking herbs if you are NOT taking spironolactone. Total dosage of all anti-DHT herbs combined should range between 640mg - 1500mg daily.

I will say this again. You need to combine different plant types and customize your dosages to work with your body. Many people give up on herbal anti-androgens because they do not combine plant types, take too small of a total dose, or take too large of a dose of one plant.

Okay, I'm doing everything. How long do I have to wait?

It depends on how severe your acne is, how messed up your hormones are, and how strictly you follow all of the recommendations. I had severe nodular/cystic acne that took 8 months on 100mg of spironolactone to resolve. For the first 4-5 months, my skin looked EXACTLY THE SAME as when I started. If that's not discouraging, I don't know what is.

Hormones are SLOW. Do not expect that you can be "tweaking" your regimen every week. Basically start from a good place, and slog through. If you don't see any improvements at about 4 months, then consider making changes.

Can I speed this along?

There really is not a quick fix for hormonal issues. For various reasons that I will not go into here because it would take far too much time, I DO NOT recommend combining hormonal treatment with antibiotics, retinoids, or benzoyl peroxide products.

How should I wash my face?

Less is more. The short version is that your skin needs an ideal pH level of 5.5 to fight off infection and heal itself. Get above or below that and your skin suffers.

Most of you wash your face with alkaline city or well water, then you use an alkaline cleanser, then you slather on some acne product that is too alkaline or too acidic. Some of you do this 2-3 times a day. What you are really doing is leaving your skin in a disrupted state...all the time.

(By the way, the marketing term "pH balanced" is crap. It's not regulated. It doesn't mean anything. Companies can slap this on whatever they want.)

When I was going through hormonal treatment, this is the exact regimen I followed:

  • Cleanse skin once a day with distilled water (this has a neutral pH) and CeraVe cleanser
  • Moisturize once a day with CeraVe Hydrating Lotion
  • Wear makeup/sunscreen as little as possible
  • 30 minutes of sun exposure daily
  • No caffeine, alcohol, dairy, or sugar. Diet low in refined carbs.
How did it work for you?

How long did it take you to have clear skin?

I went from severe acne to zero zits after 8 months of following all of the steps above. It can be a very discouraging process. At month 4, my skin looked about the same as at month 1. But between month 4 and month 8, I saw zits slowly disappear. Expect this. The changes are slow. It is worth it in the end.

How bad was your acne?

My acne was graded by several dermatologists as severe. On the Leeds scale I was an 8 (out of 10), on the Cooks scale a 7 (out of 8), and on the Pillsbury scale a 4 (out or 4). After 8 months following the steps above, my skin was completely clear of active lesions. My exact regimen is as follows:

  • 100mg of spironolactone daily
  • Washing face once a day with distilled water and CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser
  • Moisturizing with CeraVe Moisturizing Lotion
  • NO caffeine, dairy, and sugar. Diet generally low in refined carbs.
  • 30 minutes sun exposure daily (no sunscreen)
What treatments failed you?
  • Oral and topical antibiotics: Cephalexin, Amoxicillin, Tetracycline, Doxycycline, Clindamyacin, Minocycyline, Azithromycin
  • Topical retinoids: Differin, Retin-A Micro, Retin-A
  • Benzoyl peroxide
  • Acids: salicylic acid (BHA), glycolic acid (AHA), mandelic acid, lactic acid
  • Light therapy: blue light, red light, infrared light
  • Exfoliation regimens: Clarisonic, dry brushing, scrubs
  • Washing regimens: Oil Cleansing Method, water-only method
  • Vitamin regimens: zinc, vitamin A, vitamin B5, MSM, probiotics, digestive enzymes, fish oils, omega fats, iodine
Will I have to take an anti-androgen long-term?

I have to. I experimented with not taking mine on vacations and have broken out again.

How is everything going now?

My skin remains clear. I currently follow the same simple cleansing regimen, take my anti-androgen daily, and get adequate sun exposure. I never drink caffeine, however I now allow myself some dairy products and occasional desserts. I only wish I had known about the hormonal causes of acne sooner.

Outside reading:Do Milk and Sugar Cause Acne? By Dr. Mark Hyman in the Huffington PostFemale Acne and Hormones By Dr. Geoffrey Redmond and the Hormone Help Center of New YorkProgesterone: The Almost Forgotten Hormone By Energetic Nutrition and citing Dr. John LeeSaw palmetto reduced DHT levels by 32% in this study.

Wow you put a lot of work into this. Some of this is absolutely correct. Unfortunately in many cases it's not.

Quickly note on testosterone metabolism.

Testosterone is metabolized to estradiol through the aromatase pathway.

Testosterone is metabolized to dihydrotestosterone (DHT) through the 5 alpha reductase pathway.

DHT does not stimulate sebum production. Testosterone does.

DHT does not cause PCOS. Elevated Estradiol/Progesterone deficiency does.

Elevated sugar increases insulin which stimulates sebum production by increasing fat production.

Coffee and sugar based drinks increase aromatase activity that elevate estradiol not DHT

DHT is not your enemy, sugar and poor diet is.

Spironactolone will only be used chronically in corrective hormone therapy by the low information physician. This medication will bind to aldosterone receptors causing a change in mineral balance (hydration) in addition to lowering testosterone. This is not a mild medicine and there are many other ways of dealing with hormone imbalances.

SPIRO WHEN USED LONG TERM IN RODENT MODELS CAUSES TUMORS.

Work on your reading comprehension, bud. Some points in your post are just flat out wrong, and for others you just ripped a statement out of a paragraph and ignored its context. When it comes to hormones, nothing is as black and white as your short and choppy statements would leave someone to believe.

GreenGables does an excellent job of interpreting the tremendous amounts of often conflicting information on hormonal acne and has helped several people with consistent and effective hormonal treatment advice. If you're a woman looking for helping treating hormonal acne, her advice is about as solid as you can get off of any online forum.

Edited by jlcampi

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Nope, I'm not going to play this game with you. I've got better things to do.

You have demonstrated a significant lack of logic and understanding in the posts I've seen from you, and someone that makes wild claims without citing scientific evidence and contextual interpretation is not worth arguing with. It's like trying to have an intellectual debate with a child; it never goes anywhere due to poor fundamental understanding of the subject material.

I think Green Gables said it best, and I will follow her lead on the matter because I have no desire to make a mess out of her thread. I won't be addressing jlcampi anymore as well.

To anyone reading this, jlcampi is a brand-new forum member who has decided the best way to make his debut on the sorry "forum scene" is to spam existing posts and tell everyone that the Paleo diet is the fix for all your troubles. I will not be responding further, or "feeding the troll", because the flaws in his logic are too numerous to count and frankly not worth my time. If you have questions about hormonal acne, please feel free to PM me.

Edited by CBIOT13
1 person likes this

People never cease to amaze me. Some with their brilliance, others with their ignorance. eusa_think.gif

Here's A Few Acne.org Threads Of Mine You May Find Useful/Interesting (updated 7/25/13)

-- DIY Apple Cider Vinegar Toner

-- How to Ice Inflammed or Picked at Cysts

-- Milk of Magnesia Uses

Other Threads Worth Looking At

-- Oily Skin Research Thread: This shows some of our previous efforts and explains the mechanisms behind oily skin.

-- My failed but enlightening experiment going the "less is more" route, aka "The Caveman Routine"


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