I've been paleo for a year, and at first it worked : acne started to disappear, never had new zits. Then went lower carb, and everything got messed up. Everything. I now have more acne than I ever used to, my legs even have acne, I have sinus aches and fungal infections, ...
So I started eating veggies again. No luck. I started eating fruit again. No luck. I tried tubers. No luck.
What is this all about? The only 2 differences that I made are : I stopped retinol supplementation and also upped vitamin D supplementation. It's winter, I don't see a lot of sun...
Please help me, I really eat a fine diet but it just won't work. As a sidenote, eating vegan made it even worse than this (I had tinea all over my leg, and maybe you know this, tinea takes months to disappear, I almost cleared it all until I went low-carb).
The amount of money I lost to trying out different solutions is extreme. I want to do a blood test for vitamins, minerals and hormones, but I'm not sick so my doctor doesn't want to. I'd go to an other doctor but they're all like this, and my doctor is actually an awesome guy (he's very open-minded).
I've read through a lot of posts here and I do everything right it seems : fatty fish, organs, bone broth, veggies, and recently I tried going higher carb and all. Why don't I have a bit more luck???
I had acne since I was 11 (I'm 29 now), and had to use a 10% benzoyl peroxide cream every day to avoid turning into a pepperoni pizza. About 5 weeks ago, I completely cleared up my skin and stopped using the BP cream (and I want to cry with joy every morning when I wake up and my skin is still clear).
I went strict paleo 5 weeks ago, eliminating all grains and upping my fat intake. I wasn't focused on PUFAs at the time, but looking back I had DRAMATICALLY reduced my PUFA intake, and also upped my intake of fatty grass-fed beef, chicken cooked with the skin and (I love me some chicken skin), butter and coconut oil all over everything, bacon and eggs every morning, and increased consumption of full-fat, grass-fed dairy.
For me, I'm pretty convinced that wheat/gluten trigger acne for me, because the one time I had wheat over the past 5 weeks, I got a zit the next day (but just one, and it went away pretty quickly). But I've recently become a Ray Peat convert, and I'm thinking that reduction of PUFAs and increase of good animal fats and proteins has helped to heal my skin and whatever was going on in my system that was causing my acne. I've never in my life reduced PUFAs as much as I have in the past 5 weeks, and I've never in my life had skin this good. This is all speculation though, as I'm not about to switch back to a PUFA-heavy diet just to see if my acne comes back.
I wish you the best of luck - keep searching, and you'll find the answer!
Have you tried low PUFA? My acne seems random but recently has been clearing.. When I think back to what I've been doing.. I have been eating heaps of fruits (oranges 1 a day), taking a low dose of iodine when I wake, using iodised salt and trying a new approach to PUFA of keeping it as low as possible.
My protein is kangaroo mince, lamb liver/kidney, bonebroth and my only real PUFA is a can of sardines every other day (low PUFA anyways at only like 400mg O3 a can)
My fat is coconut oil or tallow from bone broth.
I also have been sleeping amazing for the first time in a while (using a bit of melatonin) and only washing my face by wiping it with a wet rag. Cold showers before bed as well.
I think my approach might have been influenced by Ray Peat. I know I have been VERY bad to my thyroid in the past when I thought I was eating a perfect paleo diet.
I think mainly you need to get yourself feeling well and good physical and mental energy - then slowly but surely the skin will follow... I'm convinced at least for me, Acne will never be a quick fix. Do some heavy lifting too maybe to stimulate the CNS.
My zits occurrences went down dramatically after having handful of roasted pistachios daily. Don't know any science behind it but it just works for me. I'd like to try raw pistachios to see if the effect would be the same.
I believe that acne is always connected to your health, most likely, gut bacteria and other organs.
To address your gut bacteria issue I would most definitely start by adding sauerkraut and kimchi to your diet on a daily basis. For the first couple of months I would eat them three times per day with meals. Also, since you might need more gut bacteria, check this site for the best pro-biotic supplement. I hate supplements, but I would start taking one if I had this issue.
I always notice when my (usually flawless) face flares up and it always have something to do with my hormones or digestive health.
Oh, and NO GLUTEN. Make sure there is no gluten in your lipstick, toothpaste or facial cream.
Stick to being 100% Paleo with no cheating for a while.
I would not do dairy for a while either unless you personally own that cow/goat and what it eats.
No sugar either, not even fruits because of the gut issue.
i would strongly recommend you try supplementing with 25-50mg of zinc picolinate every evening - myself and my partner have had radical results from upping our zinc, and both have clear skin now. there is a lot of reading on the topic on paleohacks - i would definitely give it a shot.
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