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acne fighting foods and teas

Over that past year or so I've been experimenting with healthier foods and focusing on improving my skin. I'm extremely passionate about food, cooking, and baking and I love to replace unhealthy ingredients with healthy ingredients because I didn't want to give up my love for eating delicious food because of acne. I know everyones skin is different and reacts differently to certain foods. But these are the foods/herbs that improve my skin:

Pumpkin seeds- contain a lot of zinc and a slew of other beneficial minerals. Don't buy the pre-packaged seeds, they're way too expensive. Go to the bulk/organic section of the supermarket where you can fill bags up with things like nuts raisins lentils etc. Usually a pound of seeds it around $5.99 and they last me for a good while. I like to just eat these by themselves but i sometimes toss some in a salad or make dark chocolate bark and top it with some seeds.

Cacao- super antioxidant :) I know it comes in "nib" form but i've never had those. I buy a bag of 100% organic cacao baking chips and incorporate them into things like whole wheat pancakes or home made trail mix. They have a really bitter and unique taste but i've gotten used to it. This is great for people who love chocolate but want to cut out sugar.( 100% cacao contains zero sugar)  Sometimes I melt these down and mix in some orange oil, then pour tiny bits of it onto a baking sheet with parchment paper, then stick it in the freezer for 10 mins and have delicious drops of sugar free orange chocolate :)

Whole wheat- I know wheat is a trigger for some people, but it has never affected my acne and replacing white starchy carbs with a whole wheat alternative has helped. If I'm gonna eat a sandwich i use 100% whole wheat bread. I also buy whole wheat flour to use for baking. I recently discovered "WHITE whole wheat flour" which has all the same benefits of regular whole wheat but has a lighter, tastier flavor. I use this to make banana bread, crackers, pancakes etc.

Coconut Oil- I'm sure everyone is familiar with the benefits of coconut oil because of its antibacterial, anti fungal, and antiviral components. I stopped eating greasy foods from restaurants and take out places and starting cooking with coconut oil at home. I use it for just about everything and it tastes delicious. I even substitute it for butter in recipes and on toast.

Coconut Milk- if you haven't already cut out dairy for your acne, i  highly suggest it at least trying it for a few weeks. Especially cow's milk which contains hormones that affect our own hormones which increase oil production and acne. Switching out anything with milk with a dairy free alternative definitely improved my skin. Coconut milk is SOO GOOD i use it for cereal, oatmeal, pancakes, and pretty much as an alternative to any recipe that calls for milk. The brand i buy from is called "So Delicious" which is made from organic coconuts. You can find it pretty much at any store (located where the soy milk is) its in a small carton and not too expensive. I opt for the "unsweetened vanilla" one which tastes amazing and has 0 grams of sugar. Also, the same brand sells coconut milk ICE CREAM! Dairy Ice cream was one of the main things that caused my painful breakouts and when i stopped eating it, my skin got a lot better. So i occasionally buy those (although I want to start making my own ice cream with coconut milk) And you can also get the full fat version of coconut milk which is in a can and i use it in place of cream in recipes. 

Eggplant- This is a really good way to make wholesome meals and eggplants contain many nutrients good for skin. I simply slice an eggplant REALLY thinly and dip it in an egg mixture, then fry in a pan with some olive or coconut oil . I cook them until soft and tender and just eat it by themselves or stack together on toasted bread with peppers and onions for a sandwich. It tastes amazing when its sliced up really thin for some reason, definitely give it a try.

Eggs!- these might be a trigger to some people, but if you aren't sensitive to them and you're not vegan, they may actually help with acne. Also they're great for a protein source and i eat them almost every day. I like to just scramble 2 eggs and top with sea salt and black pepper.

Carrots, pumpkin, sweet potatoes- excellent source of vitamin A, need i say more? I buy cans of organic pumpkin and put it in oatmeal, baked goods, or simply buy itself with a sprinkle of cinnamon. I cook sweet potatoes just like you would a baked potato, and just top with sea salt. I like to use carrots for salads, roasted in the oven and raw with a black bean dip i make.
Rooibios tea (red)-  This helped A LOT  when i was drinking 6 cups of it a day. It has extreme anti-inflammatory benefits and i feel that it improves my overall complexion when i consistently drink it. It has a rich nutty flavor that i love and it pairs well with a slice of orange. When i have painful pimples this really helps. You can buy it at certain grocery stores in a box of 20 tea bags for about $4.

Chamomile tea- this is a close second to roobios in terms of the anti inflammatory benefits. I like drinking this before bed it has a calming aroma and helps with redness. I also make a toner with loose chamomile tea and keep it in the fridge and apply with a cotton round after cleansing. I'll leave the soaked cotton round on my face when im laying in bed and it helps lighten any sort of redness from acne or marks. And to blonde or lighter hair people: I use it on my hair and it makes my blonde more bright and golden :)

Dandelion- This has been a remedy for various skin conditions and acne is one of them. I drink a roasted dandelion tea and it tastes amazing and it also is beneficial for cleansing the liver.

Other herbal teas that are beneficial to skin and overall health: hibiscus, peppermint, ginger, burdock, nettle, echinacea, and honeybush.


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