You often hear those of us who promote a high raw, or raw diet, talk about the “glow”, referring to beautiful glowing skin. And, I believe that to be true. There is nothing quite like the abundance of fresh, live, hydrating plant foods to help bring out your beautiful glowing self!
But like most things in life, not every method has the same exact results for every single person. For some people, the opposite happens. No one likes to talk about it because, how can that be? And as a result some people suffer for a long time before seeking help because they keep hearing “it’s detox”. But in private practice with my clients, I know that is not always the case.
When someone comes to me as a client and is suffering from acne that is not hormonal, I immediately put them on an anti-inflammation elimination diet. It is what makes the most sense. The acne usually clears and then we add foods back in little by little. The usual culprits are dairy and refined carbohydrates, especially wheat. However some of my clients are already following a clean plant based diet, no dairy no wheat and high raw, yet they continue to have moderate to severe acne problems. Many of these people do not even have a history of acne.
One of the primary culprits of dietary related acne is a lack of important fats in the diet, which also leads to deeply wrinkled skin. And the other factor that can cause acne for some people is too much sugar in the diet. How much is too much is a highly individual measurement.
So many people believe that fats in the diet cause acne. And if you are talking about toxic fats like cheese, milk, ice cream, and oils, that is 100% correct. Those foods do often cause acne because they are inflammatory. However, healthy plant based fats like seeds and nuts, avocado and coconut greatly improve the look and condition of the skin. I always recommend a low to moderate fat diet depending on your age, physical condition, amount of physical activity and other factors. But no one’s fat intake should be so low that it begins to age and damage the skin. Remember, what we are seeing on the outside is reflecting back to us what is already occurring on the inside.
If you are suffering from acne and have already eliminated dairy, wheat and toxic animal fats, here are some things to consider:
1. Eliminate sugar in all of its forms until your acne clears. This includes all sweeteners, sweet raw desserts, high glycemic fruits, all dried fruits and all fruit juices. High sugar fruits include mangoes, bananas, plums, nectarines, peaches, pineapples, grapes, dates and watermelons.
*Please keep in mind, this recommendation to avoid high sugar fruits is only for those whose acne develops after going to a high raw or raw diet beyond a reasonable detox period, or whose acne continues while on a raw diet.
2. Consume anti-inflammatory fats. Make sure to get omega-3 fats from plant sources like hemp seeds and flaxseeds (freshly ground), chia seeds and walnuts.
3. Include acne-preventive foods in your diet . Foods like turmeric, ginger, green tea, dark purple and red low-sugar foods like purple cabbage and dark berries, and green foods like dark green leafy vegetables and spirulina can be very effective in the elimination of acne.
4. Consider Supplementing with Zinc Citrate. Some people have immediate improvement in their acne when they supplement nightly with 30 to 50 mg of Zinc Citrate.
5. Consider Supplementing with Alpha Lipoic Acid. ALA supplements have the ability to regulate the production of nitric oxide, which controls blood flow to the skin, helping clear acne and promote a glow from within!
* Always check with your health care practitioner to be certain supplements are ok for you.
Other important tips are:
- Be sure you are drinking approximately half of your body weight in pure clean water each day
- Avoid toxic makeup products
- Steer clear of cleansers with alcohol and other harsh ingredients that strip your skin of its natural oils, making the skin overcompensate for the dryness and produce more and more oil