Yesterday, I wrote a blog post about the causes of acne and mentioned a client who needed help with clearing acne on his face. Helping clients with nutrition, and developing clear skin is just one of the services I provide at the Healthy Lifestyle Clinice in North London. Today, I wanted to continue the theme of helping you to stop acne and clear your skin by providing you with ten different ways to do that. Today is parts 1-5 and tomorrow I will outline parts 6-10
1) Avoid refined/ highly processed carbohydrates such as the ones found in fast foods. Avoid processed sources of sugar such as those found in commercial juices (don’t be fooled: the only ‘fresh’ juice is the one you’ve just made with fresh fruit or veg), sodas, food stuffs with added sugars (which is why you need to read your labels carefully).
2) While you suffer from acne, you would also do well to avoid all grains and grain-based foods. This is because these get broken down to sugar rather quickly…which feeds the bugs. ‘Even wholegrains?’ I hear you say. yes, even those. They may be complex carbs but your body prefers the complex carbs found in vegetables to those found in grains, as these don’t spike your blood sugar the way grain products do..
This means no bread, rice, pasta, cereal, potato (not a grain but does spike blood sugar in a hurry, especially white potato), corn. If you’re serious about this, you will find healthy alternatives to these eg quinoa instead of rice, mashed cauliflower instead of mashed potatoes, etc.
3) choose the right type of protein for you: Dairy products and meat from animals that have been reared commercially contain hormones which increase the secretion of sebum. Dairy products also produce an insulin response (likely due to the whey content), that increases the secretion of androgens which in turn cause you to make more sebum. so if you suffer from acne it may be wise for you to avoid dairy.
And don’t worry that you can’t get enough calcium without dairy. That’s a myth that’s busted in this article on calcium.
4) do eat lots of vegetables in any form, especially the green leafy ones. Sweetcorn doesn’t count as a veg but as a grain, in terms of the way the body handles it…so that means, for example that you could eat veggie omelettes, salads, stir fries, steamed veg, you name it, go for it at least 4 portions a day. With a little imagination you can come up with more ways to eat veggies in a day…(4 portions of veg a day. 1 extra portion to make up your ‘5 a day’ can be a piece of fruit – while you have acne, even the so-called ‘good’ sugar in fruit- fructose – must be minimised. Truth be told, fructose isn’t all that it’s cracked up to be…but that’s for another blog post.)
Vegetable sources of protein are less likely to trigger such responses, particularly organic sources. If you must eat meat, be sure to choose grass-fed animals reared in a free-range environment, which have not had hormones or antibiotics fed them, and which have fed on pesticide-free grass.
5) Do drink lots of water: either drink a glass every 4 hours, or drink a total of (your body weight in kg x 33ml) per day, but to know if you’re drinking enough, your urine should be a clear colour, almost colourless. If it’s dark chances are you’re dehydrated. (Unless you’ve eaten something or taken a medication or supplement that could darken urine or make it deeply yellow).
Those are my first five tips on how to stop acne and enjoy clear skin. Chances are you will need help coming up with a new nutritional plan that will ensure your body gets the right nutrients it needs to stay healthy and to help your skin. If you want to talk to someone about your skin and you are based in the North London/Hertfordshire area click here to complete our enquiry form and we will be in touch. If you have any questions or comments feel free to leave them in the comment section below.
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