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Bosie

Nearly A Year And Little Improvement :-(

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A little background info; i am twenty five years old, male, and the only member of my family to have suffered with continual acne and scarring. My acne has rarely ever been severe or cystic, but instead rather stubborn pimple/pustules which usually come as a result of an infected blackhead or whitehead and leave terrible red marks. The acne is usually located around my temples and below my lower lip/ upper chin. I get blackheads on my nose and forehead all the time but rarely do they become infected like the ones in the areas i've listed.

When i think of the potential contributary factors which may have caused/worsened my acne and set me apart from my siblings i can only come up with the following;

1. i have been on and off anti depressents since the age of fifteen. This may have created a hormone imbalance.

2. my diet as a child was dreadful, not through any fault of my parents but because i was such a demanding brat. I refused to eat anything healthy and instead lived off white bread, fries/chips and coke. Perhaps my gut has been damaged as a result (all those years of zero nutrition must have done a lot of harm)

3. my sleep pattern since the age of thirteen has been mostly nocturnal and any attempt to rectify this has always resulted in major stress.

Anyway after reading the many testimonies on this site which swear by the diet/acne connection i decided (near enough a year ago today) to do a candida diet to kill the bad yeast in my body. After two months of following a ridiculously limited diet and losing a ludicrous amount of weight, looking dreadfully ill and anaemic i decided i couldn't go on anymore. I was just over eight and half stone and despite craming myself full of coconut oil and pumpkin seeds i just couldnt put on weight. I figured i might as well have acne and be at a reasonable weight than be abnormally thin AND have acne too.

After those two months i changed my strategy. I couldnt do the candida thing so i booked myself a food allergy test. I am somewhat skeptical about the tests i had done but it seems i am allergic to most grains and dairy (except yogurt). At this point i tried going gluten free and also experimented with taking chromium and cinammon pills to regulate my blood sugar levels. i was eating a huge amount of fatty and sugary none gluten products (which i know are full of lots of other crap) and i was putting weight back on at last, but sadly my acne was still pretty persistent.

After a few months of going gluten free and putting on a bit of weight i then changed my diet slightly again, and this time things seemed to improve. I ate avocados, pumpkin seeds, salads, apples and eggs in the morning and at night and ate my usual dinner of either salmon or chicken and a ton of veg (cabbage, broccolli, carrots etc) for dinner. The only thing that i ate that was dodgy was a bag of kettle crisps everyday (purely to help me gain a bit of weight and they were gluten free too). Things improved with my complexion, i was about 60% clear and only had a few breakouts when i went out and drank wine at bars. Over the summer, things were pretty stable with my skin.

Then something wonderful happened at the end of august/early september. I started to branch out my diet in an effort to put on more weight. Everyday i ate a bar of carob chocolate or natural dark (87%) chocolate and i reintroduced yogurt back into my diet. I also started eating almonds. I began to put on weight and disciplined myself in to getting a regular sleep pattern. I was feeling healthier and happier than i had done for a long time. My skin was virtually clear except for a few clogged pores. The only strange and unpleasent thing that happened was that i would often after breakfast experience a terrible rash beneath my lower lip which disappeared after an hour or so of it developing. This was very strange but i thought nothing of it. Things were absolutely great until mid october when i had the worst breakout around my temples i had had in a long time when some of my blackheads became infected and inflammed. I really can't account for why this happened. I started drinking a lot of nettle tea arround that point in an effort to help my constant hayfever symptoms but whenever i mention that as a possible cause people dismiss the idea (i have a hard time believeing it myself)

I have since become very miserable again and my sleep pattern has gone haywire. I feel like i've fallen into my old traps once more and that after a whole year i'm still not much closer to solving this thing. The only thing i do think i've learnt is the benefit of the summer sun and a good sleep pattern has on our skins. Other than that i'm just not any closer to solving this problem. I've been gluten free for a good eight months, have avoided all grains for the last two months, eaten a diet full of vegetables and lean meats and fish. Why do i still have this disease?

Some other info; the only vitamin that has ever worked for me is niacin (which as most people report works only for a short time period as an anti inflammatory). I've tried b-complex, zinc, cod liver oil (which i still take) chromium, b5, vitamin d3 for the past 5 months (which i still dont think is a substitute for natural sunlight), tumeric, vitamin A, Vitamin C.

From this i can gather that supplements aren't the way to go for me.

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What amounts of the supplements have you taken? Also I think I (personally) have an intolerance to chocolate, even super dark chocolate, definitely need to start avoiding that...it's just so damn good. People have reported issues with seeds and nuts, etc. You're doing the right thing! It gets frustrating but just think of how your body is benefiting as a whole and not just how your skin's doing.

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What amounts of the supplements have you taken? Also I think I (personally) have an intolerance to chocolate, even super dark chocolate, definitely need to start avoiding that...it's just so damn good. People have reported issues with seeds and nuts, etc. You're doing the right thing! It gets frustrating but just think of how your body is benefiting as a whole and not just how your skin's doing.

I think I have some issues with chocolate too = (

I made this awesome homemade chocolate by melting coco powder into coconut oil and froze it, but somehow this made me breakout.

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If your gut is damaged, seeds are a horrible food to ingest regularly.

You can't just avoid "some" crap and expect to be clear fully. You want to avoid ALL crap for a period of a few months until things go back to normal. Only then can you slowly reintroduce foods that gave you problems before in small amounts. I'm not a proponent of megadosing anything but if your diet has been out of whack for years, it may be wise to supplement extensively with things like Coq10, zinc, Vitamin A (not beta carotene), and omega-3 krill or fish oil. You want to include many sulfurous foods, avoid common allergens in both food and external things, eat healthy amounts of protein and fat, etc.

I would avoid fruit, nuts, seeds and the obvious ones that everyone should be avoiding (sugar/soy/dairy/gluten.) Kefir is fair game. Yogurt is pretty crappy most of the time unless it's greek yogurt and even then kefir is still superior.

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What amounts of the supplements have you taken? Also I think I (personally) have an intolerance to chocolate, even super dark chocolate, definitely need to start avoiding that...it's just so damn good. People have reported issues with seeds and nuts, etc. You're doing the right thing! It gets frustrating but just think of how your body is benefiting as a whole and not just how your skin's doing.

I do indeed think there is a connection between an unhealthy body and acne it's just i cant figure out my triggers. I was eating a 100g of chocolate a day, and usually a whole greek yogurt pot too in an effort to boost my weight. For around six to eight weeks i was only getting these strange inlammatory reactions below my mouth which lasted an hour and then went away. Apart from this i had my usual blackheads and whiteheads but no inflammed pustules. I felt good and happy, and then for some reason it all went wrong.

About supplements. i've tried 25-50 mg of zinc for a long period of time and i didnt feel it helped. I took a b complex for two months last year, no help. I got so fed up at one point that i started taking 30,000 iu of vitamin a which was insane and it still didnt work (thats how desperate i got). Have tried being on vitamin d3 2500-5000 (which i'm still on).

I do take a massive ammount of niacin at times which i know isnt healthy but it does fight inflammation,

If your gut is damaged, seeds are a horrible food to ingest regularly.

You can't just avoid "some" crap and expect to be clear fully. You want to avoid ALL crap for a period of a few months until things go back to normal. Only then can you slowly reintroduce foods that gave you problems before in small amounts. I'm not a proponent of megadosing anything but if your diet has been out of whack for years, it may be wise to supplement extensively with things like Coq10, zinc, Vitamin A (not beta carotene), and omega-3 krill or fish oil. You want to include many sulfurous foods, avoid common allergens in both food and external things, eat healthy amounts of protein and fat, etc.

I would avoid fruit, nuts, seeds and the obvious ones that everyone should be avoiding (sugar/soy/dairy/gluten.) Kefir is fair game. Yogurt is pretty crappy most of the time unless it's greek yogurt and even then kefir is still superior.

Thing is i thought i WAS avoiding crap foods for a long time. When i was on the candida diet, i cut out all sugar including fruit (though wholemeal bread and brown rice were still present....which i now know arent particularly healthy)

As for the yogurt, i may be wrong but i dont think that high fat greek yogurt affects me all that badly (i had literally years of not having it in my diet and it doesnt seem to make a difference with me) I have tried finding kefir yougurt as i know you have said on other posts how much better it is nutrition wise but i find it difficult to find where i live.

Also fish oil has been a part of supplement routine for quite awhile and i have tried natural vitamin A and zinc (with no success)

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Getting a lot of inflammation lately and i just can't seem to get rid of whiteheads and blackheads. ARGGGGHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! When i squeeze them they get infected, when i leave them they just become infected at a later time (usually after i eat something dodgy or a night out drinking)

So sick of this at 25 years of age. My skin is going to be completely pock marked by the time i am thirty :-(

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Everyone who is still having trouble--try avoiding ALL grains. Please!

Well i have been trying to avoiding all grains since september and have largely succeded except that my aunty buys me occassionaly these nut bars that have rice in them but for the most part i avoid all grains (in particular gluten and wheat)

Still my acne seems to have gotten worse just lately. It's so depressing and frustrating. I feel like i have tried everything.

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If you're reacting to grains it matters even if you only eat them once in awhile.

It may not matter for some, but for me I had to give up everything. I can't even have traces of grain in supplements.

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You may be right although for the past few weeks i have refused to any of those rice/nut bars. For the past week or so i have been drinking diet coke again so maybe that accounts for my breakout but i'm finding this so difficult to cope with.It's constant scrutiny and watching what i eat/drink and trying to live on a student budget while also trying to put on weight.

Also people are getting very frustrated with me because of my avoiding certain foods and people are complaining that i'm still underweight, which is true. You'd think after a year i would have learnt something about balancing diet with weight gain but it doesnt look like it :-(

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You know what's the first thing I thought of?

Liver issues. I too was on and off of antidepressants (mainly *on*) since a VERY young age. About six weeks after stopping them this past May, I experienced TERRIBLE breakouts for MONTHS. I don't know if this is your issue at all -- but after doing loads and loads of research, I came to realize that my liver was quite troubled (and my hormones way out of balance... not the best combination, heh). Have you ever considered that, or doing a cleanse, or anything of that sort?

Wishing you the best. Keep that chin up and that resolve strong. You'll figure it out!

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You know what's the first thing I thought of?

Liver issues. I too was on and off of antidepressants (mainly *on*) since a VERY young age. About six weeks after stopping them this past May, I experienced TERRIBLE breakouts for MONTHS. I don't know if this is your issue at all -- but after doing loads and loads of research, I came to realize that my liver was quite troubled (and my hormones way out of balance... not the best combination, heh). Have you ever considered that, or doing a cleanse, or anything of that sort?

Wishing you the best. Keep that chin up and that resolve strong. You'll figure it out!

Thanks for the reply. I've never really thought of doing a liver cleanse but sitting here with a load of very inflammed pimples around my mouth might persuade me to try it lol. TBH, anti depressents are one of the things that seperate my experiences with my siblings (who incidently dont have acne) so perhaps there is a link. There have been periods where i've been on ADs and had had clear skin though so.

I still can't get over that period in september, early october when my skin was pretty much clear and i was putting on weight and eating some things which are generally considered debatable as to their health benefits (i.e carob chocolate and greek yogurt). I just cant figure this out!

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Hm. For that, I would suggest talking to a nutritionist or naturopath - someone more familiar with the intricacies and subtleties of the human body. They may very well be able to help you "decode" what your body is telling you smile.png

Oh, I was on ADs for years without issue - it was when I came off of them and birth control within one year that I had a HUGE issue. I think my body was basically trying to rid of a lot of chemicals and toxins, but my poor liver was all, "lol you kidding? i am done, you have effed with me ENOUGH" and what with it being overtaxed +hormonal craziness = .....

So yeah. Them's my thoughts. I hope they help ! <3

Edited by Ukulala

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For the past week or so i have been drinking diet coke again so maybe that accounts for my breakout

Noooo! lol.... yes, diet soda is absolutely horrible for your body. Horrible. PLEASE do some research on how toxic this crap is!

I was also put on antidepressants by bad doctors at a young age, and stayed on them all through my teens. I ended up with a lot of health problems because of it and I know they did a lot of damage to my system.

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For the past week or so i have been drinking diet coke again so maybe that accounts for my breakout

Noooo! lol.... yes, diet soda is absolutely horrible for your body. Horrible. PLEASE do some research on how toxic this crap is!

I was also put on antidepressants by bad doctors at a young age, and stayed on them all through my teens. I ended up with a lot of health problems because of it and I know they did a lot of damage to my system.

I think youre right on the diet coke....but its such an energy boost, especially in the mornings. By the way, i remember reading your thread about how you removed all grains from your diet and cured your acne. I'm always pleased to hear when someone cures themselves as it gives the rest of us hope, i have a few questions though if you dont mind.

Was your acne purely cystic or was it acne of all types (blackheads/whiteheads/ pustules)? I have a sneaky suspision that diet works wonders on controling the bodys response to inflammation but will not stop pores from clogging. I have read the ages old thread by Lionqueen in the blackheads and whiteheads forum and she said that without using a top cleanser and exfoliant she would still get mild acne.THis has made me think about going down the route of OTC products again after virtually a year of using next to nothing and washing my face with just water.

Also if you advocate giving up all grains does that mean that alcoholic drinks such as whiskey aren't allowed? I'll be very upset if that's the case :-)

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It was all sorts of stuff. HUGE cysts, smaller whiteheads, inflamed pores, the works. It all goes away as long as I eat right.

And yeah, I don't drink any form of alcohol at all. Ever. I've been sober since march 2009....

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Still suffering with acne and hyperpigmentation. Ive said this alot but i'm worried because although i had acne as a teenager i havent started scarring until these past two-three years and its getting worse. By 30 my skin will look terrible at this rate.

Could anyone recommend a good way of extracting the gunk in clogged pores before they become infected? This is my main problem. Could i get it done professionally? Or are there any home treatments i could use?

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Still suffering with acne and hyperpigmentation. Ive said this alot but i'm worried because although i had acne as a teenager i havent started scarring until these past two-three years and its getting worse. By 30 my skin will look terrible at this rate.

Could anyone recommend a good way of extracting the gunk in clogged pores before they become infected? This is my main problem. Could i get it done professionally? Or are there any home treatments i could use?

Bentonite clay masks have worked great for me. Many people use the 'Aztec Secrets' brand, but I'm not sure how available it is in the UK. It's VERY affordable; I pay $6-7 for a whole tub which has lasted me a month and looks like it will last another 4-5 month. The only other thing you have to buy is organic apple cider vinegar to mix it with.

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You may be right although for the past few weeks i have refused to any of those rice/nut bars. For the past week or so i have been drinking diet coke again so maybe that accounts for my breakout but i'm finding this so difficult to cope with.It's constant scrutiny and watching what i eat/drink and trying to live on a student budget while also trying to put on weight.

Well, here's one less thing to scrutinize. Just cut out the diet sodas and other crap filled drinks. Period. Regardless of whether or not it causes a break out. No scrutiny needed.

I know it is for some reason a strange concept for the British and most Europeans, but you can drink teas cold. They are delicious that way. As all American Southerners know, iced tea is magical on a hot day.

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For the past two months (january and february) i cut out diet coke and it made no difference sadly. Ive had two in the past week again because i felt i needed a caffeine hit for a few early morning lectures but i know i should stay off them, even if it doesnt improve my skin greatly when i avoid them.

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For the past two months (january and february) i cut out diet coke and it made no difference sadly. Ive had two in the past week again because i felt i needed a caffeine hit for a few early morning lectures but i know i should stay off them, even if it doesnt improve my skin greatly when i avoid them.

Have you heard of yerba mate? It's a tea that is very stimulating/caffeinated. Much stronger than coffee, I'm not the only one who thinks so.

Why are people who take NSAIDs or other prescriptions relating to mental health always so into coke or pepsi? My older half-sister has bi-polar disorder and has to have at least one a day and that's her cutting back dramatically. Look up phosphoric acid sometime, it literally leaches calcium from your bones.

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For the past two months (january and february) i cut out diet coke and it made no difference sadly. Ive had two in the past week again because i felt i needed a caffeine hit for a few early morning lectures but i know i should stay off them, even if it doesnt improve my skin greatly when i avoid them.

Have you heard of yerba mate? It's a tea that is very stimulating/caffeinated. Much stronger than coffee, I'm not the only one who thinks so.

Why are people who take NSAIDs or other prescriptions relating to mental health always so into coke or pepsi? My older half-sister has bi-polar disorder and has to have at least one a day and that's her cutting back dramatically. Look up phosphoric acid sometime, it literally leaches calcium from your bones.

It's probably partially a sugar addiction thing. Sweet tastes are addicting (which is why McDonald's puts sugar in its hamburgers). Some people have a harder time kicking the habit than others.

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For the past two months (january and february) i cut out diet coke and it made no difference sadly. Ive had two in the past week again because i felt i needed a caffeine hit for a few early morning lectures but i know i should stay off them, even if it doesnt improve my skin greatly when i avoid them.

Have you heard of yerba mate? It's a tea that is very stimulating/caffeinated. Much stronger than coffee, I'm not the only one who thinks so.

Why are people who take NSAIDs or other prescriptions relating to mental health always so into coke or pepsi? My older half-sister has bi-polar disorder and has to have at least one a day and that's her cutting back dramatically. Look up phosphoric acid sometime, it literally leaches calcium from your bones.

It's probably partially a sugar addiction thing. Sweet tastes are addicting (which is why McDonald's puts sugar in its hamburgers). Some people have a harder time kicking the habit than others.

Srsly. Sugar was what I found myself making allowances for when changing my diet, making gluten-free goodies left and right, still eating dark chocolate etc. Those aren't always a problem for everyone but they definitely were just reinforcing my connection to sweet stuff. As of three days ago I gave up sugar and all starches as a sort of detox/precursor for the beginning phase of GAPS program. There's a huge itchy rash all over my abdomen and back, which I think is from no sugar or starch for the bad bacteria to feed on. I've been putting coconut oil/unscented lotion/tea tree on it, baths and showers make it go away so I'm not too concerned. Other than that I feel super.

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For the past two months (january and february) i cut out diet coke and it made no difference sadly. Ive had two in the past week again because i felt i needed a caffeine hit for a few early morning lectures but i know i should stay off them, even if it doesnt improve my skin greatly when i avoid them.

Have you heard of yerba mate? It's a tea that is very stimulating/caffeinated. Much stronger than coffee, I'm not the only one who thinks so.

Why are people who take NSAIDs or other prescriptions relating to mental health always so into coke or pepsi? My older half-sister has bi-polar disorder and has to have at least one a day and that's her cutting back dramatically. Look up phosphoric acid sometime, it literally leaches calcium from your bones.

It's probably partially a sugar addiction thing. Sweet tastes are addicting (which is why McDonald's puts sugar in its hamburgers). Some people have a harder time kicking the habit than others.

Thing is though i quit for two months and saw no improve ment in my skin whatsoever. It was frustrating. My diest is full of veg, lean meat and salmon, why are my pores so clogged?

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Bosie,

I am sorry you are struggling with this--I know it's frustrating.

I'm wondering if when you began eating more poorly again and your acne improved if it was because you had been detoxing, and that process was stopped with the addition of bad foods. The first thing I thought when reading your post was that you have a lot of detoxing that needs to be done. Ukulala mentioned a liver cleanse, and I think this might be an excellent idea for you, but it's important to cleanse in the right order. You would first want to do a colon cleanse--make sure your digestion is normal, then a kidney cleanse, and then a liver cleanse. Many people report a great reduction in allergies after doing a liver cleanse as well. Dr. Cynthia Foster has some good info on cleansing, and "The Detox Book" by Fife, is good as well.

Please don't take anymore Vitamin A!! It's very dangerous to supplement with. It's much better to get in the form of beta carotene, which your body will safely convert into the amount of Vitamin A it needs. Green smoothies are an easy way to do this.

Are you still on the anti-depressants? I would work your way toward getting off these. There's a good chance that if you balance your body, you can. There's a book called, "The UltraMind Solution" that talks about this. You can also try cognitive behavioral therapy. The book, "Feeling Good," is the #1 book for this and gets better results than anti-depressants. Exercise and sunshine are also important.

Please don't discount supplements--most likely, you are needing/would benefit from probiotics, Vitamin D, a good green powder, a food-based B Vitamin, fish oil, etc. If you are lacking in some of these things, you body can become imbalanced, and it definitely affects your brain. Vitamin D actually acts as a hormone in the body--most people don't know this. It's extremely important for overall immune function as well.

As all American Southerners know, iced tea is magical on a hot day.

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