Clean Diet for Clear Skin
By: Khadija Dukes
Acne is a disease (yes, I consider it a disease) that I have had for a very long time. I have gone to several good and not so good dermatologists, swallowed more pills than a prescription druggie, and used enough skincare products to stock a whole aisle in Wal-Mart. While my acne has been remedied with several of these treatments, I found that the results were only temporary. Once I stopped using my creams or ran out of pills, the acne would always come back with a vengeance. Having so many ups-and-downs with my skin caused me to become stressed out which (guess what?) made my skin breakout even more.
It was during these moments that my skin was at its worse. I not only had tons of whiteheads and extremely oily skin. I also had cystic acne. If you’ve ever had cystic acne or even just one cyst, you know that it’s no walk in the park. Swollen, painful, oily, inflamed skin is the result of cystic acne. Not to mention horrible self-esteem and constant embarrassment. Antibiotics helped with the cysts, but once they were treated I was left with huge, hideous dark spots. At times, the acne scars can seem even worse than the acne because at least you don’t feel the need to wear makeup everyday just to even out your skin tone.
Going through these periods of clear skin then inflamed skin made me want to get to the root of my acne so I that I could treat the cause of it. I began researching foods for clear skin and began incorporating more fruits and vegetables into my diet. I even began drinking green smoothies. In addition, I cut out all of the white bread and white rice and switched to whole grains. My skin saw major improvements from this alone. However, as a southern girl I still loved my fried foods and extra sweet tea, causing me to still experience breakouts. Therefore, I cut back on the greasy, fried foods and limited my sweet tea addiction. This was not enough, however, to completely clear my skin. I then looked into foods that could cause acne and I noticed that the added hormones in milk could contribute to acne, so I switched to almond milk and upped my intake of water. Yet, still no crystal clear skin.
Having a friend who went vegan, I decided to look into the health benefits. One of the many benefits was clear skin. By cutting out all the meat and dairy that is pumped with hormones and putting only plant-based foods in my body, I would experience better digestion, a clean colon, a healthy gut, and clear skin. I learned that when we have unhealthy gut and an overloaded liver, the body expels these toxins from the skin, resulting in acne. Having been vegan for about two weeks, I have already experienced better digestion. I hope to see clear skin as well as I embark on this vegan lifestyle.