Since I was 12 years old, I've struggled with acne and the whole host of skin problems associated with acne (acne scars, blackheads, blemishes, breakouts, clogged pores, cystic acne, combination skin, dry skin, oily skin, whiteheads, etc.). Now 12 years later, after spending thousands of dollars on different skin care products, seeing dermatologists and researching & experimenting with natural and holistic approaches to solve my own skin problems, I can confidently say I have identified the root cause of acne (and its various forms).
To be clear, I am not a doctor, a professional or an expert. I am someone who has refused to believe that relying on a skin care product to solve your skin problem is a sustainable approach because I have been let down so many times. Instead of complaining and feeling sorry for myself, I chose to ask a different series of questions and stop viewing the brands behind the products that I was using as the enemy, and instead, understand what was causing my acne (and other skin problems) in the first place. Also know that I am a completely different human being with different DNA, genetics, microbiome & skin type from you. Please know that we are moving towards customized solutions for every human being because it is the logical progression forward to combat the "one-size fits all" mentality.
Before I tell you what is causing your acne and how you can naturally begin the process of eliminating this problem, we must first take a step back and understand the problem. If you are like me, and have tried EVERYTHING and still have not found something that has worked, then you need to stop doing the same thing over & over again expecting a different result. In other words, stop going from brand to brand like a lost puppy looking for someone to solve all your skin problems for you. Instead, take ownership and responsibility for your skin problems, knowing you are the one who has created them, and take the proactive steps necessary towards solving it yourself.
With that said, allow me to remind you of what you may already know & how changing your perception of the problem will allow you to identify a viable solution for you.
WHAT IS ACNE?
If you can Google, then you know that Acne in its most simplest form is a clogged pore, that contains dead skin cells that combine with oil that are trapped inside a hair follicle. As the amount of "pus" begins to increase, the more redness & inflammation occurs around this clogged pore, making it bigger and more likely that it will cause you to take some serious action.
You are most likely familiar with terms like "cystic acne," "hormonal acne" or "digestive acne" being thrown around, which are different types of acne that occur in different areas of your body, in particular your face. For the time being, set aside any preconceived labels or notions of these various forms of acne and view these as only symptoms of an underlying problem which can be simplified into one term:
We can spend all day trying to identify what your "disease" is called and finding the corresponding prescription OR simplify the problem by looking at your skin problems as signs of inflammation.
So the next question we have to ask ourselves is:
Where & how does this inflammation occur?
Your initial thought maybe "obviously on the skin" and most likely what you already know about acne, as explained above.
However, I would like to propose an alternative explanation that you may be familiar with as well: skin inflammation is gut inflammation.
I believe your skin is a direct reflection of the health of your gut & digestive system. Imagine your digestive lining as a parallel for the skin of your body. If there are continuous sources of inflammation that are being moved through your digestive tract, these sources of inflammation (toxins, bad bacteria, waste, etc.) will sift through the digestive lining, which will eventually come out through your skin.
For anyone who feels I am beating a dead horse, my goal here is to simplify your understanding and not overwhelm you with the complexity so we can get onto finding a quick & effective solution right now. The how is prominently available as long as you know what to look for online but because of our access to every piece of information available on the planet, the next challenge comes down to validating this information with scientific truth in a world where anyone can start a blog, Youtube channel and be perceived as an "expert." Right now, I can only share my experience but as I become more knowledge about the biological functions of the body, I will also strive to find the truth because it's how I am hard-wired and I'm not one to just "talk" without being able to back up my claims.
So, if skin inflammation is occurring in your gut & your digestive system, the next question we must ask is:
How do we reduce inflammation?
The quickest way to reduce inflammation in your body is to do the following:
Look at it this way: If you were a smoker and wanted your lungs to heal, what's the first step to achieving this? Stop smoking.
And what are we eliminating?
Look at the lungs of a smoker as the digestive system if you struggle with acne (or other common skin problems). The cigarettes you are smoking can be found in:
Your relationship with food (what you eat, how you view food & why you eat) is the relationship you have with your skin. Food is something we must consume every single day, and in today's world, we don't have to do much to get it and have a plethora of options to choose from, that may be good or bad, depending upon what you normally eat.
To get straight to the point, if you eliminate the following "trigger" foods from your diet for a select period of time, you will not only develop clearer, more healthy & more beautiful looking skin, you will also have more energy, less whole body inflammation & less body fat overall.
At Restoar, we believe beauty lies in simplicity and like to focus on the 20% that will generate 80% of the results. Over the past 2 years, I have identified the 20% of foods that will cause 80% of your inflammation below:
The 20% of Trigger Foods That Cause 80% Of Your Skin Problems
- Hydrogenated Oils
If you eliminate the majority of these foods from you diet, I can promise you that your skin will begin to process of clearing up immediately, because you are simply not inputting sources of inflammation into your body, so as a result, the inflammation on your skin will fail to persist.
However, if you have the majority of these foods on a consistent basis, you must gradually eliminate these foods from your diet instead of going cold turkey, as your body & taste pallets are most likely not adapted to cleaner, healthier foods.
Cheek, Jaw & Nose Acne (Otherwise labeled as "Cystic" or "Hormonal")
I recommend removing dairy & gluten from your diet first, as these are the 20% that cause the 80% of cystic & hormonal acne, because our bodies & digestive systems are simply not suited to digesting these "foods" (if you want to call them that). You will notice that your jawline & cheek acne will begin to disappear. Eating processed sugars (everything in the center of a traditional grocery store), which are heavily predominant in dairy (milk, ice cream, etc.) & foods that contain gluten (cereal, cookies, crackers, etc.) will only amplify this inflammation and existing acne, especially if consumed at an extreme level.
And Ladies, yes I know you have a completely different body & biological makeup than myself, but stop pawning your "acne" as "hormonal" because you give up your power to do anything about it. Same goes for "sensitive skin." I can say this bluntly because I've spoken to thousands of females at local farmer's markets in San Diego when first starting out selling the RESTOAR® Apple Cider Vinegar Facial Toner and know that "hormonal" and "sensitive skin" terms are tossed around loosely without any conscious recognition what they actually mean. On that note, I also find it quite disturbing Dermatologists prescribe birth control pills to help clear up acne. That sounds just as bad as antibiotics and the damaging effects they have on our bodies inability to reproduce the good bacteria that are cleared out through antibiotics.
I'm not trying to bash you. It's not your fault. Just like you may think your skin problems aren't your fault. Or the antibiotics, the Accutane, the Proactiv, the Neutrogena or any other product you use that actually made your skin problems worse, isn't your fault. You can continue playing victim by continuing to use labels and pointing the finger. But it doesn't help you or anyone else. It doesn't help you solve your skin problems and clear your skin.
What you can do is make a choice to educate yourself about the problem in order to respond differently to it. I had to do this myself and it's the only way you'll be able to naturally heal & clear your skin from within. Knowledge is power, but it is only potential power unless you apply it. If I knew these when I was 12 years old, I would have prevented myself from becoming addicted to sugar for almost 12 years, eating foods that contain loads of gluten, consuming dairy and so much more. I wouldn't have struggled with the skin problems, wouldn't have suffered emotionally because of it & wouldn't have had to spend the time, energy & hassle of looking in the mirror and continuously applying these products.
Think about it:
What would you do if there were no skin care products available?
How would you solve the problems now?
Remember, eliminating inflammatory food groups is a simple yet highly effective way to quickly treat & cure your acne, starting today. This is only Step 1 out of the 3 Step process to naturally clearing your skin from within.
The next blog post in this 3 part series, How To Heal Your Gut To Clear Your Skin - Step 2: Balance, will be released later this weekend.