Here it goes...
I have battled acne since I was probably 12 years old and I'm now 22, almost 23. It's been a never-ending battle, however I ONLY dealt with it on my face for the majority of those years. When I was going through the teenage phase I did have some on my back (few), but mostly just pustules on my face. The word "pustules" grosses me out, sounds worse than comedone and zit if you ask me. Anyways, my acne has gradually changed over the years to blackheads and white zits under the skin (they look like flat little white spots but they come out if you mess with them). It hasn't been that bad as I have gotten older, however I pick the living crap out of them. I can't stand having active blackheads on my face, and my face bruises easily...so in the end I just end up looking like I had a massive attack of full-on zits & if I use too much benzoyl then they look like they were cysts. Benzoyl can be awful, if you use too much you fry your face off, but if you don't use enough it doesn't work. ***FML*** haha
(Does anyone have recommendations on how to get rid of blackheads without scarring the crap out of sensitive skin???) Also, can anyone give me some advice on how to make yourself stop picking??????? LOL, I obviously need some type of help for it because I can't seem to just leave my skin alone. However, it doesn't help that I just moved to a new area and live with my mom who has one of those crazy MiCROSCOPE mirrors where you can see every little pore on your face. Ouch, that thing kills me.
Last year my ex-bf recommended that I try Minocycline (I had never really heard of it because I didn't go to dermatologists. I had some rough experience with them in the past, all their retin-As and creams just made me WORSE). However, my ex bf had tried Accutane and his face was flawless so I figured why not try it out. Honestly, it didn't do anything....at all. I still had my normal breaks outs, and I was on it for about 10 months. It concerns me when I consider what kind of crap I put my liver thru...especially since it obviously gave me Candida.
Last April I stopped Minocycline abruptly and I experienced this nightmare flare. NIGHTMARE. Bumps EVERYWHERE: face, chest, back, lower back, gosh they could have been on my shoulders too. My skin was covered with these weird flesh-colored bumps that scratched right out. I can tell you I almost had a nervous breakdown, and so I freaked out of course and went right back on Mino. However, my body (yeast) had developed an immunity to it at that point and had morphed, resulting in Alien acne that no Cycline would fix. I stayed on Mino for a few more months hoping it would start working again, but it didn't ...and I also went on Yasmin thinking that that would help clear me up. Epic fail on both counts....and Yasmin just made an already uncontrollable yeast overgrowth even worse.
If you're on Minocycline and have absolutely no idea what I'm talking about, then I would highly suggest that you start researching antibiotics and Candida. Essentially, antibiotics kill ALL bacteria in your gut (good and bad), and when you go off of them the bad bacteria proliferate and grow out of control killing your good. Good bacteria normally eat and kill bad bacteria, and fight against diseases. Bad bacteria are fungi (yeasts), that overload your liver, colon, etc with toxins. When your body cannot detox and get rid of these toxins quickly enough, they find alternative routes to get rid of them i.e. thru your skin...resulting in horrific acne. Honestly, it's a bit more complicated but that was a basic sum up of my understanding from all of the millions of articles I have read.
So here I was not having a clue what was wrong with me: experiencing weight gain, sugar cravings, uncontrollable appetite, yeast issues... I won't explain that one lol, and crazy body acne that I have never had before in my entire life. It's six months later and I still haven't gotten it all figured out (I dealt with a life-changing move, and it's been a process of research to really convince myself of what I needed to do to fix this issue). The only reason why it has taken this long is because moving to a new place and trying to find a job took a little while, and living with my mom...she doesn't buy the right food necessarily. If you have a Candida issue you have to eat all organic and get antifungals, etc.
Of course, for anyone who hopefully reads this....are you familiar with Bee's theory? She completely disregards the use of antifungals as necessary because she believes that the body in actuality creates the Candida to fight toxins. That once your body is back to good health it will heal itself naturally and stop making Candida. However, even if Bee's theory is true, if you partake in her diet plan and starve the yeast, then use antifungals to help clear some out (even if your body is producing them), it might reduce acne until you reach your goal. IDK it's all so complex that it's hard to really figure out what route is the right to go, I guess play with it by trial and error huh?
Anyways, once I started to get a clue as to what may possibly be wrong with me I went and bought all these antifungals but wasn't strict on the diet. Waste of time, LOL. Then I ran out of antifungals and got my diet in order, bought some more.....and then decided that I wanted the heavy duty stuff so I went to the doctor and conned her into prescribing me some Difflucan. Doctors this day and age don't really believe in Candida overgrowth in the intestines as being any type of health concern for people that don't have HIV, etc. I guess Candida is a common issue with HIV patients because of the anti-virals they are put on. Anyways, they do however prescribe Difflucan for yeast infections (sorry guys), and even though OTC cream helped clear that up I lied and said I was dealing with horrible ones still. Now, I had been fighting Candida halfheartedly by that point, but the fact that OTC cream cleared me up without anything heavy duty makes me wonder if my yeast issue isn't that extreme? Regardless, she only gave me FOUR. FML, total fail lol. From my understanding of Difflucan though....it works systemically and it's much stronger than any yeast medication out there, but if you take too much of it your yeast can morph and build resistance. So, I took my four lol.
So here I am as of today with my last Difflucan being four days ago (that's the amount of time it stays in your system)....my back bumps are getting a lot better too because I have also cut out sugar, diary, bread, etc etc. My chest seems to be clearing up nicely too. However my face has sprouted a ton of blackheads out of nowhere which makes me wonder if that's a symptom of yeast die-off? I also had the flu the entire week pretty much, but I hung out with my friend Jaimie who said the flu was going around her entire work. Anyways, the die-off reaction is basically what happens when you kill too much yeast at once, when they die they release 79 different toxins into your system, and your body becomes overloaded which is why you feel sick. Die-offs are also described as your normal symptoms X 3. Basically, if yeast gives you acne (which is one of the main signs of yeast overgrowth btw), then when you kill it you should have pretty dramatic flares. However, my body has been clearing up but my face not so much.....but I have this suspicion that with yeast all break out areas seem to change. Also, I used plain, LIVE cultured yogurt on my face as a mask last night and I wonder if the probiotics in them were fighting the yeast in my pores....resulting in pulling up blackheads? Is that even possible???? LOL
One step at a time I guess. I'll be blogging my progress on here as often as possible....I don't really believe in the every day thing like so many do.....I think it's better to give it a week between posts. I have began to be very strict on this diet, however I have allowed myself Greek honey yogurt (the honey has antibacterial, antimicrobial properties but it also has sugar which feeds yeast), so I will be cutting that out shortly. However, I do think the live cultures seem to work well in fighting yeast and plain yogurt is SOUR ick. The Difflucan should be coming out of my system today, but I have Renew Life CandiGONE on the way in the mail, and also have the remainer of a Candida Clear antifungal kit in the cupboard haha.
Also, I have a lot of other random research and things I have read that I would be willing to talk about. I can also find websites that support everything I have said, but a lot of it is off of Healing Naturally by Bee. Regardless, despite everything that I seem to know about acne there's too much information and too many variables. For example, there's a chance that my Candida issue could be gone and it was only minor...and that really it's just my hormones that cause break outs. That's exactly what any dermatologist would say. However, I have read that Candida is directly related to hormone imblanace because the toxins overload the system, and so the liver no longer is functioning well enough secete the hormones properly resulting in massive buildup. Generally they say it's estrogen. Thrilling news, not only does Candida cause all of the other health issues and is actually linked to cancer if bad enough, it also causes Estrogen dominance. However, if you try to take progesterone to balance your hormones out, I read that Candida feeds off of progesterone and any other excess hormones in your system. Beer is directly related to Candida overgrowth and estrogen dominance in men, resulting in man boobs. HA.
Lastly, it's reputed that around 80% of the population nowadays has Candida overgrowth. AND that we are not living to be older like all the health officials like to say....we are really dying younger. In 1850 2.5% of the population lived to be over 100, 1990 it was 1.5%, and in 2007 it was 0.33% probably from all of our refined sugar, processed foods, and antibiotics that are supposed to HELP but really only make a bad problem ...worse.
Anyways, any thoughts...ideas...suggestions to help would be greatly appreciated. I'm beyond depressed, frustrated, and overwhelmed with this whole ordeal. I figured I would write a blog on here just to get my thoughts out...even if nobody reads it haha.
Day 2 of posting 10/18/2011
So much for waiting a week in between posts haha! I just wanted to update because I have hid from the world this entire week since I ravaged my face. The red marks still aren't much better despite trying: AHA, Vitamin E Oil, Coconut Oil, Castor Oil, Egyptian Magic...etc. Even some topical steriod ointment that my mom had doesn't seem to speed up the process, she's had it for awhile though so who knows if it even still works. Perhaps I'm just using too many things at once, however generally mixing it up like that works the best for me...my skin doesn't become immune usually.
I should be out getting my resume out there this week because I just finished my school program, but I found that I couldn't force myself to do that when my face looks this bad. Anyone else feel the need to hide when they mess up their face from a bout of picking???? I have also finally resolved to stop picking....they always come back so why scar my face in the process? I need to find out the root of the problem, what is really causing my blackheads and under-the-skin whiteheads...or at least just ignore them. I don't think they generally form into full-fledged zits...or it takes them a long time to. I wouldn't know though because I routinely pick them out. Vicious cycle.
I got CandiGone by Renewlife in the mail, just tried the capsule and liquid together...nasty stuff. I mixed it with a digestive enzyme called CandiZyme which I had from a different detox pack I had left over (I mentioned that I tried different things), and had some organic eggs....that's all folks lol. Something positive though other than my body clearing from those crazy little bumps, I'm slowly losing weight! Right now I'm at 145 and I'm normally at 130 or 125....my body seems to hold it decently though ...just makes my butt huge hahaha. I put on that weight though because I personally believe my Candida problem gave me an insatiable appetite! I just couldn't seem to help myself from pigging out, and normally I'm never hungry. Candida causes weight gain and intense sugar cravings, issues that I know a lot of people have and it takes all of my will power to not go throw a huge full-fledged Candida lecture at them. They would probably think I'm a fricken weirdo, I know I would have before I did all my research.
Anyways, I'm off to hibernate the rest of the weekend hoping my face will heal. I have no more excuses for Monday, Tuesday, and even possibly Wednesday of next week to do something with myself and start job hunting. This week I just used the flu excuse....lol. Another thing I'm worried about is how in the heck I'm going to survive Thanksgiving week with family in town without drinking and eating crap. I did look online at desserts that you can have for the Candida diet, and I may possibly make one just so I can handle this week.