If you struggle with acne, low energy, or are just looking for a way to undo all your bad habits over the holiday season –Read This!!
After an extremely rich and indulgent holiday season, it’s time for quick 8-day New Years detox. For me it’s a great time to practice some much-needed discipline & start the year off right. Normally I do a colon / liver / kidney cleanse to ensure that my system
is working at peak performance. I also like to break any bad habits that I’ve formed over the year – such as drinking too much tequila and coffee. 😉
It’s no shock to anyone that diet plays a big role in how we feel, but it also greatly impacts the way our skin looks and our overall energy. Beyond the advice of drinking lots of water and eating fresh in-season veggies, more and more nutritionists, as well as dermatologists are encouraging a more holistic approach to solving skin problems.
My journey to clear skin began by doing a colon / liver / kidney cleanse. I prefer to do full body cleanse on a regular basis because it helps the body to purge toxic build-up in the intestines, which allows our bodies to process everything more efficiently. If that seems too drastic, you can do an elimination diet instead. By doing this you remove things that could cause sensitivities to your system and then slowly introduce them (one by one) to see which trigger negative reactions. Wheat, dairy, sugar, processed foods, meat and alcohol are the main culprits to inflammation. Any foods that cause a spike in blood sugar can theoretically increase inflammation and insulin levels causing skin irritation and acne. Diets that are high in glycemic index can result in cystic acne and other irritating skin conditions.
I used this system in my diet, as well as my skin care routine to solve my 10-year battle with cystic acne. Keep in mind that doing an elimination diet is only the first step. It’s not about a quick way to lose weight temporarily, or just to determine what you’re allergic to – its about changing your way of life to give your body the nutrients it needs and avoid foods that are detrimental to your health.
I started doing cleanses when I was 34 because I was trying to figure out what I was eating that was making my skin break out. To tell you the truth it didn’t fix my skin condition right away, but what it did do was allow me to figure out what foods I was allergic to. My adult acne started when I was 27 and lasted til I was about 35. Looking back, I realize that there were a few major factors that contributed to my sensitivies to food and certain chemicals found in skincare products. Stress from challenges with running my business & personal life trauma triggered sensitivities to certain foods & chemicals found in many cosmetics. The result was cystic acne and a rash that would happen on my neck. My breakouts would occur whenever I was overly stressed or used products certain chemicals. Doing cleanses on a regular basis helps our bodies purge toxic build up in our intestines & allows us to process everything much more efficiently.
Keeping your gut in good health is an important part of allowing your body to process foods and chemicals. Foods that convert to sugar easily such as soda, pasta, white rice, white bread and alcohol feed the health of bad bacteria in your lower intestine. To find out if you have an overgrowth of bad bacteria you can visit your doctor for a stool analysis to analyze your bacteria levels & candida count. Or if you prefer, you can use uBiome (an at-home gut microbiome sequencing test). Foods that are great to maintain the integrity of your intestines are: coconut oil, saurkraut, kimchi, kombucha, probiotics, bone broth and kefir. If you are overly stressed – refrain from foods that don’t work well with your system. Not eating enough fiber, dealing with environmental toxins, or toxins in food such as GMO’s and pesticides and processed foods can all weaken your gut lining.
The second part to solving my issues with cystic acne was realizing that I was also allergic to products that contain certain chemicals. Anything with perfume, salicylic acid, parabins, red dye #9 and titanium dioxide (found in most sunscreens) where things that triggered break outs for me. This was discovered by switching my cleansing routine to something really simple. I put all my expensive cosmetics in a drawer and went to CVS to buy the cleanest soap I could find – Cetaphyl. I used witch hazel to tone and oil to moisturize. Making a blend of Jojoba oil, lavender, eucalyptus & frankincense and using it day and night. When I switched from using a water to oil-based moisturizer – it was a total game changer!! Think about it; oil and water don’t mix, so if you’re putting a water-based moisturizer on your skin it won’t blend with your natural oils deep inside your pores. It’ll just sit there on top of them not allowing the dirt and debris to get out. If you have problem areas, make sure to steam, exfoliate, use witch hazel or a clean toner – then give the problem areas an oil massage to pull any dirt and pore clogging debris. Jojoba oil is close to the same viscosity of my own combination skin. If you have dry skin try avocado oil mixed with olive oil, if you have dry skin try coconut oil. trust me!! I also switched my mascara and foundation to using Clinique and avoid cosmetics with red dye #9.
I wish someone would have explained this to me this when I was struggling with bad skin and stomach problems in my late 20s and early 30s. Unfortunately I had to figure it out on my own. Now I have the opportunity to share my knowledge with young brides getting ready for their big day, and friends who also struggle with their own health issues. This lifetime is precious and we only get one body. Stop the excuses, stop procrastinating and take the time to know what your body needs to look and feel your best.