Sometimes we get acne as adults and it makes us feel like an insecure teen all over again – but we’re to tell you it may be as a result of these six foods.
Hormonal acne is the result of a serious endocrine imbalance and women are especially susceptible; most women experience the effects around mid-cycle when they ovulate, and/or right before their periods.
This makes sense from a hormonal perspective: It’s the two points in the cycle when estrogen and testosterone are both at their highest points. For women with optimally functioning endocrine systems, these hormonal peaks don’t wreak havoc.
But for other women, this is a major problem.
Here’s why this hormonal chaos plays out on your face (and maybe chest and back): Your skin is your biggest organ responsible for elimination, and it works in tandem with other important players in elimination like the liver, lymphatic system, and large intestine.
To put it simply, what you put into your body is what will determine the outcome on your skin. The foods you eat, the products you use, and even the cleaning substances you handle have to be properly eliminated.
Here are some items to avoid — and add! — to get your skin clear and gorgeous again.
What to Skip
- Dairy: Aside from the fact that a lot of our dairy options include synthetic hormones that add to your body’s hormone excess, dairy is also a primary cause of leaky gut syndrome since it’s an inflammatory agent.
- Soy: If you’re already hormonally sensitive, then the phytoestrogens in soy may compound the problem and contribute to more acne. Soy can pop up in unexpected places, like supplements, so keep an eye on nutrition labels.
- Gluten: Just like dairy, gluten contributes to inflammation of the gut.
- Peanuts: Even people who don’t think they’re allergic to peanuts can experience adverse reactions to them, including skin inflammation and breakouts.
- Canola, sunflower, safflower, and vegetable oil: These cooking oils have more omega-6 than omega-3 fatty acids, which produces skin inflammation during peak estrogen time.
- Caffeine: I’m not a fan of coffee or black and green teas. Both can strip your body of essential B vitamins, magnesium, and zinc — which affects the skin’s immune response.
What to Embrace:
- Get the right nutrients: Try this clear skin juice recipe: half a cup of cilantro, half a green apple, two stalks of celery, half a cucumber, four leaves of romaine lettuce, four frozen or fresh strawberries, and the juice of half a lemon. Add up to a half-cup coconut water if needed.
- Replenish good bacteria: Probiotics are so important to good gut health, and good digestion is key to balanced hormones. There’s a set of gut bacteria (or bacterial genes, more specifically) called the “estrobolome” that produce an enzyme that helps to metabolize estrogen. To ensure you have enough good bacteria, start taking a daily probiotic.
- Go organic with your beauty products: You may already be eating organic fruits and veggies, but putting organic products on your face and body is just as important.
Throw out anything containing:
- Endocrine-disrupting phthalates (look for the acronyms DBP and DEHP)
- Sodium lauryl sulfates and ether sulfates (look for the acronyms SLS and SLES)
- Parabens (including methyl, propyl, butyl, and ethyl)
- Anolamines (look for the acronyms DEA, TEA, MEA)
- Petrolatum or petroleum jelly.