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Acne and Diet
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Hansgrohe Away
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Acne and Diet

(WARNING: TL; DR)
You're wondering why I'm creating this thread. Well, to say the least, like any teenager, I'm suffering from the god-damned scrooge that is known as acne. Yes, red pimples, and sometimes cysts and all those ungodly things. For many acne can be caused by genetic factors, or obviously, puberty. Sometimes it comes from stress. Overall though what exactly causes acne isn't clear. Given that this is School Survival, I'm certain most of you have experienced acne in some way.

However, after reading a lot on the web, and doing my own experiments, I can safely say that I believe that food sensitivities probably do cause/aggravate acne. I noticed that I was breaking out so much and I didn't even know why. Pimples just wouldn't stop coming out and I was getting frustrated. Eventually, I started reading more about diet and acne. There are conflicting reports on this, but given the general cynicism that surrounds the food industry, it's more than likely food plays a role in acne.

I've since cut out a number of foods from my diet, and while I wouldn't say my skin is 100% clear, one thing that is impressive is that I've stopped breaking out. No freaking joke. At the very least, breakouts have ended. In addition, some of the benefits of certain foods (such as antioxidants) may increase the healing of your skin. Let's get into this more.

What causes acne?
To be fair, not even scientists are even sure what the cause of acne is, and it has been hotly debated. I'll give you some generally accepted wisdoms.

1. Puberty - The hormonal changes that a teenager experience will obviously cause some pimples (lest they have great genetics). Simple as that.

2. Genetics - For some unfortunately acne can be a genetic feature and a bit more difficult to get rid of. This may (or may not) involve bacteria that pervades under the skin. The general health of a parent may also play a role in breakouts.

3. Stressful Lifestyle - Stress is known to aggravate certain hormones which theoretically encourage the production of acne and all that other crap.

4. Diet - Simply put, acne is a reaction to all the stuff that your body just didn't digest properly, and just doesn't like. This may indicate a potential food sensitivity.

Why don't I hear so much about diet and acne?
Part of the whole reason why diet and acne is so controversial and inconclusive is because for some people, certain foods don't cause acne, while other might. On the other hand, some people are able to eat so many damn foods yet never breakout at all because they inherited such a great body from a parent (hence the genetics). Basically, the fact that it only happens in part of a population complicates things.

In addition, the food industry is (assumingly) quite shady. It'd be pretty easy to imagine certain industries with such high profits (especially dairy and wheat) to try to prevent such conclusive studies coming out saying that there's a link between certain foods and acne. Imagine what it would do to their sales.

Okay then, Hansgrohe, what foods should I stay away from?
Okay, I'm going to outline what foods you most definitely need to cut out. These 4 foods MUST be cut-out if you want to stop breaking out.

ABSOLUTE MUST:
1. Dairy - The most obvious suspect. Even raw/organic milk products should be avoided. The hormones that a cow gives off are the reason for why it has so many links to acne. Basically, no milk, cheese, yogurt, or anything that has some kind of dairy product. (To be fair, I've eaten a few chocolates here and there and even meals with some cheese and sour cream without breaking out; however, these are insignificant levels of dairy that probably shouldn't be ingested till a month or so)

2. Gluten/refined grains - This is another big one. Basically gluten is found in a lot of wheat products (even in most commercial breads). The reason why gluten makes acne so bad is actually rather complicated: it's not necessarily gluten itself but rather all the crap that's been added to commercialized wheat products since the 19th century. Believe it or not, a lot of cases of celiac disease and well as gluten sensitivity have been rising (I myself have a gluten sensitivity), and this may be because of so much crap in wheat products. Unlike dairy a gluten free diet isn't so simply to explain, so this website is a bit better at explaining things.

3. Hydrogenated fats/oils - Junk food in general has very few benefits, despite it's very delicious taste. I can't imagine that the digestive system likes all those preservatives it keeps having to take in. In addition, some vegetable oils can also aggravate acne as well, so keep on a lookout for many of these (such as corn oil, for example). (Basically, this would include most processed junk foods as well as most fast food)

4. Sugar - Excessive amounts of sugar also aren't good for you, pretty much for the same reasons as all those fats and oils. Yep, bye bye junk food.

5. Peanuts and soy - Oh boy, let me say this: fuck peanuts. I hate them. I remember I ate some peanut butter and it absolutely destroyed my fucking face. This has to do with the androgen levels that these foods (peanuts and soy) contain.

FOODS THAT MAY/MAY NOT BE WORTH CUTTING OUT:
(These are foods that some people say cause acne, and others don't really have problems with; I'd suggest testing around with these foods; don't go overboard, feel free to adjust when needed)
-Processed meats/eggs (Again, preservatives, although the preservatives aren't so bad as with other foods, and may vary by brand)
-Corn (some might have a corn sensitivity; not the case for me)
-Nightshades (such as tomatoes and strawberries; this really only applies to people with vitamin C sensitivities)
-Legumes (again, this depends on sensitivities)
-MSG food additives (this one definitely applies to me since every time I eat something that has been cooked with an MSG food additive it inflames my acne; I'm not sure whether it's the MSG itself or the other crap that comes with it; regardless, check what you/your parents cook with, and ask them for a potential change in just pure salt or other less crap flavorings)

So, what should I be eating, and what can I do as well?
Well, here are a number of foods that I would recommend to eat, instead of the foods that I had listed.

1. Fruits and vegetables - This is pretty damn obvious one. Let's not mention the fact that a lot of these foods contain antioxidants, which are very good for your skin! Really, feel free to indulge (lest you have a vitamin C sensitivity). A number of fruits and vegetables also have anti-inflammatory properties.

2. Nuts, and all kinds of nuts! - Nuts generally have a high amount of omega-3s and other good fatty acids. Walnuts are probably the best in this regard. Nuts can serve as a replacement for typical snacks that you eat.

3. Almond milk and butter - Use almond milk to replace the usual milk products that you have. There are almond replacements to dairy everywhere, such as ice cream, cheese, etc. Almond butter is also much, much better than peanut butter. Heartier, too!

4. Sourdough bread - If you hate the thought of giving up bread, just go with sourdough! Try to find authentic sourdough bread if you can. The reason: because of the way sourdough is made and processed, the bacteria that is used typically breaks down the gluten. This gives sourdough the distinction of having little to no gluten, which is a plus. In addition, a lot of sourdough brands typically use less preservatives compared to white/whole wheat brands.

5. Olive oil - Overall if you suffer from acne it's best to go with olive oil. Olive oil is much healthier and won't clog you like other cooking oils. I'm not too sure about canola oil though.

6. Meats/fish - I'm not too sure about typical meat you find in a supermarket. However, fresh meat is definitely a must eat, especially given the zinc and protein content! Fish also contains omega-3, so that's always a plus. Overall, zinc and protein contain benefits.

Overall, it's definitely best to plan a diet with foods that you like that don't aggravate your condition. I can't really include all foods in a "good" category, since it varies by person. Each person varies, so adjust.

What else?
1. See a dermatologist - They'll be able to assess your condition, treat it, and perhaps give products to help treat it.

2. Get more exercise - Exercise relieves stress, and actually also helps your skin as well. Just remember to shower after you're done, since pores can get clogged by sweat.

3. Try reducing sources of stress - Stress makes acne worse or even causes new pimples to happen. Try to find out your sources, and see how you can reduce them.

4. Look for other treatments that don't involve products - This can include aloe vera juice, lemon juice, baking soda, and a number of other home remedies that can speed up the process.

5. Supplements - Omega 3's and Zinc supplements can help you get enough of those vitamins you don't get enough, and may increase the healing of skin.

6. Make your own food! - A lot of foods that you might buy on the market probably do contain sugars, hydrogenated oils, etc that you normally wouldn't get if you just made it at home. This is where home-made food has an advantage. Find recipes for common snacks such as tortilla chips, ice cream, pancakes, etc and not have to worry about preservatives. Plus, it's fun!

What about Accutane?
Accutane is typically reserved for only severe cases of acne, though a lot of people who are prescribed it probably don't need it in the first place. It's unlikely that you have severe acne, although look at photos, consult doctors, and do your research and see what you are comfortable with. In addition, Accutane may be prescribed for acne that does not go away with any kind of treatment. If you notice that even after dietary changes and such and your acne hasn't really gone away, and this has been a consistent pattern for a year, then you may also be prescribed Accutane. I'm not here to speak about its side-effects, since the side-effects aren't 100% clear. If you're pregnant, do NOT take Accutane. If you're planning on having children, well that'll have to wait till you're done with the prescription.

Just wanted to post this as a help guide. There's a lot of info regarding diet and acne but this seems to be the most simple and basic, cut and dry guide I could make.

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(This post was last modified: 02-01-2015 05:47 AM by Hansgrohe.)
01-31-2015 03:13 PM
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brainiac3397 Offline
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Post: #2
Acne and Diet

Thank god Im genetically blessed from my mother's side, who have never really had acne issues. I never had any sort of "breakout" and the worst is the rare zit pimple thing that pops up on my nose(which is actually more my fault since it doesn't actually get so bad till I start poking,scratching and picking at it causing it to enlarge). Otherwise, my face is pretty clear.

My sister on the other hand...not so lucky.

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Acne and Diet

Thanks for writing this. I never had very bad acne, but I've certainly had some.

I think this, and similar articles, belong in the updated (upcoming!) Survival Kit, rather than the edgy-era suggestions like "disassemble your school with a screwdriver."

FFS, as they say. Let's get life-relevant information to people who are living life.

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Hansgrohe Away
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Acne and Diet

Yeah, especially young people who have to go to school.

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01-31-2015 03:51 PM
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Acne and Diet

Basically, focus on what causes certain negative effects on ya. The problem people have is they don't realize each human body is NOT similar to another for most biological stuff. Sure some stuff are common, but the more "complex" stuff are pretty much varied based on the person.

Which would explain the reason some are frustrated by various acne treatments and prevention. They don't realize they should look out for what works for themselves, rather than looking for a one-solution-fits-all thing.

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(06-14-2013 08:02 AM)Potato Wrote:  watch the fuq out, we've got an "intellectual" over here.

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Acne and Diet

Why do people make a big deal out of getting acne again?

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RE: Acne and Diet

Hollywood criteria of beauty means having zero acne and sexy tanned skin with a thin waist.

But there are also normal concerns involving other stuff like comfort, self-esteem (depends on how comfy u are with ur body. Some people just cant feel comfort with current state. Whatever the reason, it aint an issue since its their individual preference) and also health (too much acne can be a pretty bad thing).

Most cases are superficial obsession with unnatural beauty though. Its a human fact that many people get acne.

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(06-14-2013 08:02 AM)Potato Wrote:  watch the fuq out, we've got an "intellectual" over here.

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RE: Acne and Diet

I never really gave a crap about all the pimples on my cheeks and forehead, my mom however...

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RE: Acne and Diet

Since I have been worried about my acne , I had cut some of products. Also mostly we eat healthy food at home , and some sweet once in a while. Now about issues at school, some teacher at the school I went before, she usually said to me and other students :' oh stop eating chocolate' ... When I rarely ate chocolate . It is not always about the food but genetics too , as you said. Ofc who didn't experience jokes about the acne at school and get insulted for no reason?
02-01-2015 02:23 AM
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RE: Acne and Diet

(01-31-2015 11:14 PM)Missile Wrote:  I never really gave a crap about all the pimples on my cheeks and forehead, my mom however...

this

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RE: Acne and Diet

kfucceee Wrote:Why do people make a big deal out of getting acne again?

It's painful as all hell, for me anyhow.
I use a lot of products to keep my acne in check, simple over-the-counter apothecary goods usually. Unfortunately, I can't cut out milk or dairy as a whole from my diet, since it's the only constant source of protein I have access to, unlike poultry and fish.
One thing that helps in my case is not indulging in masturbation.

inb4 backlash

I'm just a normal functioning member of the human race and there's no way anyone can prove otherwise.
(This post was last modified: 02-02-2015 06:22 AM by Username.)
02-02-2015 06:13 AM
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RE: Acne and Diet

(02-02-2015 06:13 AM)Username Wrote:  
kfucceee Wrote:Why do people make a big deal out of getting acne again?

It's painful as all hell, for me anyhow.
I use a lot of products to keep my acne in check, simple over-the-counter apothecary goods usually. Unfortunately, I can't cut out milk or dairy as a whole from my diet, since it's the only constant source of protein I have access to, unlike poultry and fish.
One thing that helps in my case is not indulging in masturbation.

inb4 backlash

Yeah. Some people get acne a lot worse than others, which make things a hell lot worse. Not to mention it is physically painful.

Also, Username, have you tried almond milk? I imagine that because it's made from a nut source it actually might have more protein.

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(This post was last modified: 02-02-2015 07:47 AM by Hansgrohe.)
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Acne and Diet

I knew a kid with such bad acne, he needed to use some special cream before shaving(or to shave, I didn't really understand it completely because I just overheard him explaining to a school admin).

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(06-14-2013 08:02 AM)Potato Wrote:  watch the fuq out, we've got an "intellectual" over here.

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RE: Acne and Diet

(02-02-2015 07:45 AM)Hansgrohe Wrote:  Also, Username, have you tried almond milk? I imagine that because it's made from a nut source it actually might have more protein.

I don't control the shopping list unfortunately, I also don't believe it's in the same price range as regular 2% milk, but I'll look into it.

I'm just a normal functioning member of the human race and there's no way anyone can prove otherwise.
(This post was last modified: 02-04-2015 12:39 AM by Username.)
02-03-2015 05:47 AM
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brainiac3397 Offline
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Acne and Diet

I prefer milk from a cow.

"If it ain't from an animal, it ain't milk" is my motto.

Almond milk tastes more like almond-flavored water that is white in color.

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(06-14-2013 08:02 AM)Potato Wrote:  watch the fuq out, we've got an "intellectual" over here.

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Acne and Diet

Whole milk FTW

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02-03-2015 07:49 AM
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Hansgrohe Away
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Acne and Diet

Meh I personally prefer almond milk honestly.

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