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Addressing Acne and Aging From the Inside Out

By: JoElle Lee
Posted: January 2, 2014, from the January 2014 issue of Skin Inc. magazine.
Addressing Acne and Aging From the Inside Out

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Poor nutrition. This leads to the second biggest contributor to acne: poor nutrition. Food allergies or food sensitivities can worsen or cause acne. Fat, sugar and processed foods accelerate skin inflammation that leads to problem skin. They also contribute to constipation, and the body responds by trying to release the toxins and poisons through a different avenue. The skin, along with the lungs, bowel, liver and kidneys, are all organs that assist the body in getting rid of waste products. When the development of a skin condition or even unhealthy-looking skin occurs, it may be due to one or more organs of elimination being overloaded or not functioning properly.

Diet. Your client’s diet is where you should start first when addressing skin problems. In general, acne-sufferers should follow a simple diet of basic, unprocessed foods. A diet full of excessive starches, fried, fatty foods and other junk foods has been shown to aggravate acne. Chronic constipation is also a contributing factor.

Dark green or orange vegetables are especially helpful due to their beta carotene content, which helps maintain and repair the skin. Eating them raw or lightly cooked helps to retain their nutrients and fiber. Clients who suffer with acne tend to have fewer breakouts when they follow a diet that is centered on whole foods, such as fruits and vegetables. Suggest limiting fruit juices and instead opting for vegetable juices. Juicing helps to make things easy when trying to get plenty of healthy fruits and vegetables into the body. A good vegetable juice combines carrots, beets, cucumber and celery.

Other foods that benefit clients with acne are those that contain omega-3 fatty acids. These special fatty acids can be found in many different foods, such as nuts and seeds—almonds, walnuts and pumpkin seeds—and fresh, cold-water fish—salmon, mackerel, herring and sardines. Flaxseed oil and cod liver oil also have essential omega-3 fatty acids and can be incorporated into the diet.

Recommend that clients avoid fried foods and solid fats, such as margarine, lard and vegetable shortening. Saturated and hydrogenated fats are difficult to digest, and they can worsen acne. Alcohol, sugar, chocolate and soda should be consumed in moderation and also suggest cutting back on meat products. Excessive amount of these foods can all create an acidic environment in the body that will encourage acne. For clients who are avid coffee-drinkers, try recommending herbal teas instead and drinking a glass of purified water every two waking hours to prevent dehydration.

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