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Massive Breakout From Probiotic/exercise?

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Hi all,

I've suffered from mild-moderate acne since the onset of puberty, but recently the last couple of years it has calmed down significantly in comparison to what it used to be (I am now 18 years old). I now only usually suffer from noticeable small breakouts on the chin/jawline around my menstrual cycle; other than that, I am generally pretty clear (still suffer from uneven skin tone, old red spot marks and stubborn blackheads).

However recently, I have found myself on somewhat of a small health-kick and have joined up to the gym and started taking a women's probiotic supplement (I also suffer from lactose intolerance if that is of any relevance). I exercise 3-5 times a week, mostly focusing on moderate/intense cardio and occasionally some strength/weight training; my gym sessions ususally last between 1 hour to 1.5 hours. I am pretty diligent with my hygeine after a workout and always cleanse my skin never more than 30 minutes afterward (this is how long it takes me to get home) and immediately following my workout I will use a makeup wipe on my face.

I drink a fair amount of water 1-1.5L per day, most often infused with lemon, and generally eat pretty healthily. I avoid processed foods 90% of the time (you can't always resist chocolate), eat minimal wheat/gluten based foods and steer clear of dairy products such as full fat milk, ice cream, cream and most cheeses (I eat feta sometimes).

The bad news is, while I feel great; my skin has taken a massive dive. I now have 2 massive clusters of zits on either side of my chin and along my jawline-- as well as a few smaller spots on the lower portion of my cheeks and around my mouth. I have been applying tea tree oil and mud masks as a spot treament overnight, which seems to improve the affected areas slightly but there's no dramatic difference.

I'd hate to think that I have to stop working out / taking supplements which benefit my overall health because my skin is out of control.

Do you think it is possible that my skin is going through a "purging" stage as a result of these changes to my daily routine? If so, how long does it usually last?

Has anyone ever experienced a break-out like this solely from taking probiotics?

It's frustrating to finally have been starting to be comfortable with my skin after so many years, only to have it back to square 1 essentially in a matter of days, so any help/advice would be greatly appreciated!

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You may be leading a healthier lifestyle, but that hasn't immediately tackled whatever is causing your acne. No, you shouldn't have to stop exercising..

For me, I had to take out the foods I was sensitive to. This doesn't mean just junk foods and dairy. I also reacted to apples, cabbage, grapes, and more with acne. Turned out I most likely have a leaky gut. So I'm clear when I eat the foods I don't react to, and I'm slowly healing over time when I avoid the worse foods. As for probiotics, I don't supplement. I would recommend testing going without them at some point and see what happens.

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I haven't changed my diet at all. The only thing that has changed recently is the addition of regular exercise and the probiotics.

How long do you "stick it out" for before it's more than likely not just an initital reaction/purge....

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1. Some probiotic supplements have lactose in them. It's best to start with 1 strand (like acidophilus) and see how you react. Also, don't go straight for the billion+ strands, start with a much lower amount otherwise you could experience breakouts. If you suspect histamine issues, then probiotics are not right for you at all unless you keep histamines under control (exercise also raises histamines btw).

2. After exercising/ sweating, makeup removing wipes are not enough and do not remove makeup completely (esp. in the pores). It's best to fully wash your face after you've removed your makeup, or try to exercise without wearing any makeup at all if you can.

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