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I thought I'd share with you my success story, as battling acne over the past 15 years has been very challenging and emotionally draining! I changed a few things in my diet, can eat normally otherwise and have completely clear skin for the first time in as long as I can remember.

Firstly, I have mild to moderate acne on my cheeks. I have always had around 3 large, red, active spots at any one time, up to 10 during a breakout and scarring that stays red for a long time. I only had clear skin whilst taking dianette, which made me feel depressed. I currently take the mild Mercilon, which has always helped my acne.

I've had battles with food and acne for a decade and have struggled to work out any triggers. I would go on a strict, healthy diets and see no change in my acne (often it would get worse). Furthermore, when I got spots, they would stay red and angry for a long time, only healing after a week of BP. Every few weeks I would have a cystic breakout (which was new to this year). After the most recent, depressing one, I analysed how my diet had changed over the past year (to what I thought was healthier!) and decided that the best way forwards was to change a couple of things at a time and closely monitor impact. I finally hit bingo!

The most significant and dramatic impact for me was swapping my morning black, filter coffee with one sugar for a green smoothie. Overnight, the spots I had started to go down suddenly and I got no new ones. Within a week, I had no spots, beautiful skin and could go out with no make-up feeling good (the first time in a year!). I had no idea before that caffeine amplifies blood insulin levels significantly for the rest of the day.

During this time I also cut out all nightshades (I sometimes have a mild allergic reaction on my tongue to tomatoes, so I suspected they were causing inflammation). I ate tomatoes and peppers every single evening prior to this in curries and fajitas; jalapenos seemed to be the worst trigger.

I also (incidentally, not on purpose!) stopped eating nut products, since I switched my morning oats with almond milk for a green smoothie. At times I had tried a vegan diet (I never gave up my morning filter coffee during this time though), and noticed that my new snack of almonds and walnuts during this time caused me to break out badly. Having tried snack pots of nuts at work a few times over the years for stints, there was definite cause and effect.

My digestive system has since been amazing and I have otherwise been able to eat white pasta, bread, a couple of pizza slices and a little dairy, without breaking out. If I eat badly at lunch time and feel the start of inflammation on my cheeks by evening, having a greens-heavy smoothie with just a banana to sweeten it also seems to calm my skin overnight and prevent a breakout. 

In summary, these 4 things have made my skin completely clear:

1. Swapping filter coffee for a green smoothie (kale, spinach, apple, banana, ginger), then ACV (1tb 1-2 times a day) in water & green tea during the day
2. Cutting out nightshades (potentially... will add a few back in in the future and see if I break out, but too happy with clear skin atm!)
3. Cutting out nuts
4. Limiting sugar (not obsessively)

(I take a good multivitamin too, but did before anyway, and have not been using ANY facial products other than Microfoliant once a day).

I'm so happy that I've not had to stick to a strict diet otherwise! I also have 10 times as much energy as a I used to and no longer suffer from lethargy. I suspect the positive result is due to a much healthier digestive system overall. Could not be happier!

 

Edited by 285976_1443948302
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Hi its me again
Im really happy to hear how great this worked for you and decided to try it. I definitely wondered whether or not coffee is a factor in my acne....I guess I'll find out! The prospect of no caffeine scares me but if it fixes my skin I'll take it. Your skin story sounds almost exactly Luke mine.
Do you use any liquid in your smoothies like water or soy milk?
Also do you find green tea is bad for acne too, or just coffee.

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Hi Snarkygirl,

Another week has passed and my face is still clear! Could not be happier. I just have the scars to fade now.

I add water to my smoothie. I've been doing tons of reading on diet and acne and it seems that a highly alkaline diet is best and that people with acne have been shown to have low levels of antioxidants too. Anything which raises insulin growth factor seems to be the big trigger; dairy, sugar (high GI foods) and caffeine being the worst (indirectly for caffeine though, as it just amplifies the effects of any sugar for the rest of the day, even week!). I have been drinking 1-2 cups of green tea daily though with no trouble. Trust me, as a daily coffee drinker for the past 18 years, I haven't missed it at all due to the green smoothies... they make me buzz with energy!

I got a single spot on a day I experimented and had a large slice of carrot cake with cream (came up 6 hours later), but went back to eating tons of greens and it went completely within 2 days and didn't scar.

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32 minutes ago, Foodforthought said:

Hi Snarkygirl,

Another week has passed and my face is still clear! Could not be happier. I just have the scars to fade now.

I add water to my smoothie. I've been doing tons of reading on diet and acne and it seems that a highly alkaline diet is best and that people with acne have been shown to have low levels of antioxidants too. Anything which raises insulin growth factor seems to be the big trigger; dairy, sugar (high GI foods) and caffeine being the worst (indirectly for caffeine though, as it just amplifies the effects of any sugar for the rest of the day, even week!). I have been drinking 1-2 cups of green tea daily though with no trouble. Trust me, as a daily coffee drinker for the past 18 years, I haven't missed it at all due to the green smoothies... they make me buzz with energy!

I got a single spot on a day I experimented and had a large slice of carrot cake with cream (came up 6 hours later), but went back to eating tons of greens and it went completely within 2 days and didn't scar.

Congrats on your success! Are you planning on adding nightshades and nuts back into your diet?
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Hi ArtS,

I will do quite soon and I will update this thread!

I'll start with nightshades, which I miss the most. Am quite nervous to mess with a good thing now, as this is the first time I have ever had completely clear skin, but, considering my level of moderate acne before, I should end up with a quick answer if either is a trigger!!

Regarding nuts, I am almost certain that the problem they can cause is putting Omega 3 and Omega 6 out of balance, triggering cystic acne, as all spots have traces of Omega 6 in them (I notice a problem specifically with walnuts, which are high in O6).

Will let you know! 

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7 hours ago, Foodforthought said:

Hi Snarkygirl,

Another week has passed and my face is still clear! Could not be happier. I just have the scars to fade now.

I add water to my smoothie. I've been doing tons of reading on diet and acne and it seems that a highly alkaline diet is best and that people with acne have been shown to have low levels of antioxidants too. Anything which raises insulin growth factor seems to be the big trigger; dairy, sugar (high GI foods) and caffeine being the worst (indirectly for caffeine though, as it just amplifies the effects of any sugar for the rest of the day, even week!). I have been drinking 1-2 cups of green tea daily though with no trouble. Trust me, as a daily coffee drinker for the past 18 years, I haven't missed it at all due to the green smoothies... they make me buzz with energy!

I got a single spot on a day I experimented and had a large slice of carrot cake with cream (came up 6 hours later), but went back to eating tons of greens and it went completely within 2 days and didn't scar.

awesome :)
I dont scar really either so thank God for that. Carrot cake is hard to say NO to! 
6 hours ago, Foodforthought said:

Hi ArtS,

I will do quite soon and I will update this thread!

I'll start with nightshades, which I miss the most. Am quite nervous to mess with a good thing now, as this is the first time I have ever had completely clear skin, but, considering my level of moderate acne before, I should end up with a quick answer if either is a trigger!!

Regarding nuts, I am almost certain that the problem they can cause is putting Omega 3 and Omega 6 out of balance, triggering cystic acne, as all spots have traces of Omega 6 in them (I notice a problem specifically with walnuts, which are high in O6).

Will let you know! 

Ive noticed peanuts and hazel nuts seem to bother my skin. I don't eat walnuts. 
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Have been reading a lot on inflammation snarkygirl, and this table makes the most sense, as it takes into account glycemic load and a multitude of factors too... It almost completely matches my experiences over the past month!

http://inflammationfactor.com/look-up-if-ratings/

Prior to my skin clearing up I ate a 'healthy' diet, that was high in inflammatory foods like brown rice, brown bread etc. but now I eat tons of kale and anti-inflammatory foods and have no more spots! In fact, I have ALWAYS eaten highly inflammatory foods thinking they were super healthy for me come to think of it!!

On 6/27/2016 at 11:57 AM, ArtS said:
On 6/27/2016 at 11:23 AM, Foodforthought said:

 

Congrats on your success! Are you planning on adding nightshades and nuts back into your diet?

Low Omega 6 nuts seem to have been fine! I've tried almonds and cashews with no adverse effects (but in small quantities). I realise that I have eaten small quantities of nightshades this fortnight and been fine (however, I used to eat them EVERY night in large quantities, so I still think they are one of the culprits - might be worth others testing the theory themselves, as I think this one is a personal one).
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I will have to experiment with nuts on my own then. I eat a mix of walnuts and almonds every day, not too much though - around 10-15 nuts. I also recently started eating fermented dairy again. I'll try cutting both out for a while. I will also start drinking ginger tea again seeing how anti-inflammatory it is. Maybe it was the main reason I got clear when I was following a Traditional Chinese Medicine prescription for acne. Thanks for your input and please keep us posted on how things are going for you :) 

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3 hours ago, Foodforthought said:

Have been reading a lot on inflammation snarkygirl, and this table makes the most sense, as it takes into account glycemic load and a multitude of factors too... It almost completely matches my experiences over the past month!

http://inflammationfactor.com/look-up-if-ratings/

Prior to my skin clearing up I ate a 'healthy' diet, that was high in inflammatory foods like brown rice, brown bread etc. but now I eat tons of kale and anti-inflammatory foods and have no more spots! In fact, I have ALWAYS eaten highly inflammatory foods thinking they were super healthy for me come to think of it!!


Low Omega 6 nuts seem to have been fine! I've tried almonds and cashews with no adverse effects (but in small quantities). I realise that I have eaten small quantities of nightshades this fortnight and been fine (however, I used to eat them EVERY night in large quantities, so I still think they are one of the culprits - might be worth others testing the theory themselves, as I think this one is a personal one).
thanks for the link! I have several medical issues which I think are caused by inflammation. I'm going to try asn anti inflammatory diet 
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