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Dan

Are diet and acne related?

Hey y'all. So, for some reason I got a kick in the a** from who-knows-where to figure out whether diet and acne are really related. I wrote down on my goal list, "I have figured out and am practicing a natural way to clear the skin, and am sharing it with others." Yup, I am that cheese-ball and I write down my goals in the present tense and post them above my desk. But sometimes it yields really quick results in my life, as it may be in this case. So, if you're interested please read on...

I decided to go to the UCSF medical library the day after I wrote down this goal and I did a library search for "diet and acne" and came across Dr. Cordain's 2002 article here: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.f...l=pubmed_docsum

I was intrigued to say the least after reading the article, so I did a google search for "Acne Loren Cordain" and found that he has a web site and an e-book detailing an anti-acne diet. I was like, "hmm...another person getting me excited about something and then asking for twenty bucks before giving the info out". But then I thought, well, this guy is a college professor, a PhD, and spent lots of time in the field on this project. Maybe he deserves my twenty bucks. So I bought his book, and it was a great read. But, I didn't want to talk about it on the boards because I don't want to advertise anybody's stuff and it's against the rules to post just to post a link to something anyway. So I emailed Dr. Cordain and asked if we could discuss how to proceed if I wanted other people to try the diet with me. Both he and his business guy called back the next morning. Dr. Cordain was cool to talk to. He is very no-nonsense and obviously believes and stands by what he's found in his research. He didn't sound like the kind of guy who is out to make a quick buck. His business guy was one of his previous students and was equally cool, and agreed to give us 10 copies of the e-book so we can try it out for free and see how it works.

So, here's what I'd like to do. I need 10 volunteers to try this diet with me. Whoever volunteers, this is what I'll need from you so we can make sure we get really good data from our experiment:

- dedication: The diet is hardcore. We're basically pretending like we're hunter gathererers before the advent of modern grain cooking techniques. It is a very healthy diet that involves only fruit, veggies, seafood, fish, and lean meat. That's it. End of story. No sugar, no salt, little oil, no dairy, nuts only sparingly, and no grains or legumes. So whoever volunteers, you'll need to be really dedicated for at least a month without cheating. Since skin turns over about once a month the plan is to be perfect for a month and hopefully clear up. Then we can add in 1 variable at a time and see how it goes.

- money: The book is free, but eating this way I think will cost more than usual. I'm going to try to eat organic. Also, buying organic real food to eat all day is going to cost more than a quick burrito or what have you.

- time: Eating this way will require forethought. We're going to have to shop ahead of time and prepare meals from scratch.

- a digital camera: I want everyone to take a picture of their face from the front, and each side, and under similar lighting once a week so we can document this. If you would prefer anonymity you can blur or black out your eyes or send the pictures to me and I can do this for you. Volunteers will need to have at least some acne before starting so we can tell whether or not the diet works.

- a food journal: You can do this online. It's going to be important that we track our food, both what we eat and when.

Wow, all of the sudden this is sounding really hard smile.gif And I'm not deluding myself. I think it will be a challenge. But worst case scenario it will be an extremely healthy way of eating. Tons of fruit and veggies all day every day has got to do great things for the body. I figure at the very least I'll get a nice six pack wink.gif

If you'd like to volunteer please PM me or email me at [email protected] and let's get it goin'. Then everyone can follow along and we can really figure out whether diet and acne are related. Please only respond if you are very dedicated to the experiment and have the necessary resources.

Dan

Keep reading on if you're interested in learning more about how the science:

What got me most intrigued was that Dr. Cordain and his Swedish research fellow went to visit hunter/gatherer tribes and found zero incidence of acne. In one tribe there were 300 people between 15 and 25 and no acne. In the other tribe there were 15 young people and no acne. Furthermore, he talks about how Eskimo populations used to not have any incidence of acne, and since they have adopted Western diets it is obvious even to the lay person that they now have acne problems.

The book then goes into great detail regarding how acne is created. It involves 4 disease processes:

1. Pore blockage: your skin produces too many skin cells, which as they reach the surface, stick together. He talks about how food specifically aggravates this condition. Specifically he talks about how refined grains and sugars cause insulin inbalances which lead to the skin not turning over as it should. He also gets into "lectins", the poisonous part of grains that we avoid by cooking them. But we don't get rid of all of the lectins, and these may cause problems with pore blockage, and may also be a catalyst to the other disease processes listed below.

2. Inflammation. in our Western diet, our omega-6 to omega-3 ratio is way off, over 10:1. In hunter/gatherer societies, where acne is non-existent, the ratio is more like 2:1 or 3:1. We eat tons of vegetable oils and not a lot of fish and grass fed meat which skews our ratio.

3. Overproduction of sebum: this is primarily a results of excess androgens (male hormones) in the body. Refined grains and sugars elevate these androgen levels.

4. Bacteria infection: once the pore is blocked, sebum is overproduced, and inflammation is occuring, bacteria is able to have a field day. An infection ensues and a zit is produced.

The book is an interesting read just on this "micro" level. You learn all about over produced keratinocytes, impacted corneocytes with desmosomes which do not detach properly, low zinc concentrations produced from the calcium in the dairy we eat, enzymes, etc. It's pretty fascinating.

So according to Dr. Cordain, if I were to oversimplify, you keep your insulin in check through avoiding modern grains, you allow your skin cells to turn over as nature intended. Then if you get your omega-3 to omega-6 ratio into an ideal range you prevent inflammation. Next, when you keep your androgen levels where they should be by eliminating high glycemic grains, you stop overproducing sebum. Once your pores are unblocked, inflammation has subsided, and sebum is produced at optimum levels, bacteria find no blocked pores in which to overcolonize.

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Thats Very interesting, WOW i would totally do that diet but it would not fit into my life, sorry. but a very awesome topic

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As a vegetarian, I would starve eating like this, but I am very interested in seeing how this goes! Keep us posted!

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It will definitely be interesting to watch this trial.

One thing you all should also consider, in order for this to be accurate, you would need to NOT use any medicated products on your face. This way the results will be more accurate. So, that means stopping any medications, cleansers, lotions, prescriptions, etc.

Good luck to whomever is willing to try this!!

Can't wait to see how it turns out.

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I've always thought food and acne were directly related, so I'm pleased to see this. Let's find out once and for all whether there's any truth to this "myth". Unfortunately, I lack requirements 1 through 4 :lol: Good luck to those of you that undertake this, I'll be waiting for your results!

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Why 'Try' somthing thats already proven by a minority?

The question is wether what you do will work or will not. By this I mean one person trying an acne free diet compared to another persons version my differ so much that what you think will be a sound diet is far from it.

Sorry if im dampening the mood but after years of ppl telling me theres no link period, when Ive cured mine and others acne via dieting and rebuilding, you hit the point where you say ' actually fuk u lot didnt wana listen then so I aint gona talk now'

-= Currently researching into reversing aging via hormones =-

P.s.

I hope im wrong but I bet you dont find any relation between acne and diet. WhY?

Because when people realise there is a link and realise acne can be cured by themselves (along with 100s of other deseases) You realise your own product will not sell (bad for business and so everyone will see you found Zero results and for the next 10 years you keep selling your product and everyone on this forum can use your experiment as the final nail in the coffing of the 'acne and diet theory). Doctors will Lose money because people will not buy their drugs. This has a downward multiplier effect and then you realise the truth!

I have alot of respect for you Dan, If it wasnt for you id still have acne even if though I did find the truth down the long raod, you and your cream were my starting point.

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Do you think with this diet I could get 3000 calories a day and at least 150 grams of protein a day?

It would be a little tough at first. What you need to realize is that this diet is more of a "starting point". People start using this, see results (or not) then add more foods (or quit). After a month let's say you clear up a lot but want more protein. You keep the entire diet the same but add 2-3 protein shakes a day and see how your skin reacts. You find your limits and proceed from there.

Why 'Try' somthing thats already proven by a minority?

The question is wether what you do will work or will not. By this I mean one person trying an acne free diet compared to another persons version my differ so much that what you think will be a sound diet is far from it.

Sorry if im dampening the mood but after years of ppl telling me theres no link period, when Ive cured mine and others acne via dieting and rebuilding, you hit the point where you say ' actually fuk u lot didnt wana listen then so I aint gona talk now'

-= Currently researching into reversing aging via hormones =-

P.s.

I hope im wrong but I bet you dont find any relation between acne and diet. WhY?

Because when people realise there is a link and realise acne can be cured by themselves (along with 100s of other deseases) You realise your own product will not sell (bad for business and so everyone will see you found Zero results and for the next 10 years you keep selling your product and everyone on this forum can use your experiment as the final nail in the coffing of the 'acne and diet theory). Doctors will Lose money because people will not buy their drugs. This has a downward multiplier effect and then you realise the truth!

I have alot of respect for you Dan, If it wasnt for you id still have acne even if though I did find the truth down the long raod, you and your cream were my starting point.

I agree with the medical community not having proper motivation to offically link diet with ANYTHING let alone acne. But WEstern civilization has the worst diet and health in the history of human existence. People don't eat right, don't exercise everyday, don't sleep enough etc etc. Even if researchers found a perfect "anti-acne" diet I bet most people wouldn;t follow but would rather treat their acne with pills and cream. It's easier.

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not when it causes cystic acne that leaves you with a face full of scars. i finally killed my acne after ten years by cutting way down on sugar and dairy.

i killed it with accutane.

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Hmmm, I would love to test this theory out, I'm always up for kicking acne in the rear. Buuuut, I have a couple questions first.

I would hate to get off the CSR regimen, would it be absolutely necessary to quit the regimen while on this diet? Or could we have a small test group that tests the diet on the regimen, and a small test group that is not on the regimen doing the diet?

:think:

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After trying it all my diet looks like this:

3 litres of Lemon juice

1 litre of powdered wheatgrass

6 raw salmon fillets in lemon juice

Cultured Milk to add total EFAs and some Vitamins/Antioxidents

Coconut fat

Unlimited veg

limited fruit

I keep active carbs below 30 grams per day. I Eat one or two carb meal per week aka Carb load with Potatos.

This moderate protein and fat diet will cure up alot of ppls acne. It also balances hormones via the correct omega balances, IGF-1 production and testosterone, curves insulin and cortisol hormones. You will be in a fat burning state and if you stay away from hi GI carbs insulin will be used properly by the body.

This is a Cross diet between 3 different books. Ive increased Acid in this diet because as you will soon see keeping acid to 20% of calories will leave you looking frail, weak, skinny and gaunt.

For anyone interested in acne/diet research id strongly look into the following:

1. Liver flush and rebuild

2. Bowel detox and rebuild

------------------------------------

1. Mucus theory

2. Acid/Alkaline theory

3. Food combination theory

4. Fat/Sugar burning states

5. Omega/Hormone Balance

Alot of the probelm with acne seems to be hormonal and liver problems. This can explain why a bodybuilder who takes steroids - an uncontrolable increase in hormones gives a un-acne person acne.

I honestly beleive diet can help in 99% of the case. If you tried diet and it didnt work you 1. Didint try the right thing 2. Liver and bowels are extremly over burdened.

I could go on and on but all I will get is some stupid teen come on and say 'i took accutane and I eat what I want' etc etc so when I see this I think why bother giving any insight. Lets all stick with the common myth that diet and acne arnt related, Why? because thats what we want to hear!

p.s. If your a biology student and wanting to flame anything ive put I will ignore you because im sick of arguing with you lot. Yes your right because you have been told and I havnt. I also have no clue what Im on about blah blah blah keep yapping. You will eventually ask how and why but thats only if your willing to step outside your cosey medical establishments etc which you wont because theres no money to be made and your career will be shattered by people ridiculing your ideas even if your ideas are right!

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I am concerned about not getting enough calories as well. I called Dr. Cordain's business person, who has a masters in nutrition and we discussed this problem. I decided eating some fattier meats like bacon and incorporating maybe an avocado a day will help increase the calories. I'm actually hungry right now :)

That Australian study is interesting. I wonder if people went on Dr. Cordain's diet if they could get more than 50% improvement however. I'm lookin' for 100%. I think this Australian study is the study that Dr. Cordain may have been telling me about on the phone. He was talking about his colleague who was about to come out with a study that will turn the dermatological community on its ear regarding diet and acne. He mentioned to me that the people in the study still ate dairy and some grains however. That's what has me thinking if a study was done with people eating strictly only fruits, veggies and meat if we'd see better than 50% improvement.

Lastly, regarding my selling products, I will say it again if I must...I did not make acne.org so I could sell products. My goal always has been and always will be to clear people up. If that is with the Regimen, awesome. If it's with diet, great. If it's with a combination, that's fine too. If something else comes along that has promise, I'll share that as well.

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Dan, I would like to try the diet out, but could you answer this question for me first?

I would hate to get off the CSR regimen, would it be absolutely necessary to quit the regimen while on this diet? Or could we have a small test group that tests the diet on the regimen, and a small test group that is not on the regimen doing the diet?

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I'll have to see how many people have volunteered so far. I have a zillion emails to check, but I will let you know.

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I think i sent you an email, was a bit rude in that so i will say sorry lol i had alot of sugar that day.

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One thing you all should also consider, in order for this to be accurate, you would need to NOT use any medicated products on your face. This way the results will be more accurate. So, that means stopping any medications, cleansers, lotions, prescriptions, etc.

And wouldn't you have to stop all that at least six weeks before starting the diet thing? If not, your skin may start to get worse just from stopping the meds you're using, but not necessarily be b/c of the diet.

So you'd have to let your skin go back to it's normal state before taking the starting pics.

Also-what about alcohol? :whistle:

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i did a diet very similar to this about 5 years ago, called the 'body ecology diet' (there's a book that you can get at whole foods that details it). i did it for about 9 months straight and then off and on over the past several years have been trying it. it definitely works for clearing up skin problems.

this type of diet is definitely something that you have to do hard-core, no cheating whatsoever. it's hard to get past that stage when you feel crappy because all the yeast in your system is dying off (most likely anyone who has acne has candida yeast in their colon). BUT it is really really worth it. my skin looked 'bright' in only 5 days and was clear as long as i wasn't having a lot of starchy foods. starchy foods (corn! and other grains) are the one thing that did me in -- when you get even a tiny bit of sugar all the yeast are just begging for more.

i would definitely be interested in trying this diet, dan. i think staying away from all grains is pretty essential for clearing acne. diet has always been the one thing that has cleared me up.

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Dan, it's been almost 2 months since the first post. Were you (or others) able to go a whole month on the diet? I take it the results were not good, or you would have posted an update?

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Yup, I am still strictly on the diet believe it or not. I have now been off the regimen for 17 days on the left side of my face and I'm clear. I have gotten a few clogged pores on that side of my face but they don't get inflamed and they go away spontaneously. It's an odd experience and a very cool one. The feeling of getting at the root of a problem is a beautiful thing. But, I don't want to talk too soon. I still keep thinking maybe it will stop working, but so far so good. You can see my log here: http://www.acne.org/messageboard/index.php?showtopic=119661

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