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My Steps To Clear Skin!

May 18, 2011

I just looked at myself in the mirror and my face is SO CLEAR!

I have battled red blemishes, blotches, pink scarring and an oily/greasy face ever since I was 12. I always wear makeup in public to cover up the hideousness. Many tears have been shed over my skin. Many jealousy thoughts have entered my head because I feel like I’m ugly because of my acne.

Ever since I was 12, I’ve never had clear, blemish free skin. Never.

My mom also has acne problems and we have tried EVERYTHING.

We did Pro-Activ for the LONGEST time. It did help at first, but it mostly dried me out!

We visited a Dermatologist and he gave me a pill and some special face washing stuff, but it always COMPLETELY dried me out and it HURT really bad and didn’t help me in the long term!

We also paid ridiculous amounts of money for this special face washing kit called CleanStart at a fancy beauty store. It seemed to help at first, but again it DRIED ME OUT and didn’t help in the long run! And was too expensive to keep buying!

This was also back when I was eating white flour quesadillas with MOUNDS of cheese, Ramen noodles and frozen pizza on a daily basis!

Come on, you have to admit, Ramen noodles are delicious! I grew up on them! I was addicted and would eat 2-3 packages in one sitting! 😦 Yikes!

So let’s see, my face today is looking GREAT! The redness has decreased, the greasiness has DEFINITELY decreased and I look like I’m glowing!

So this is probably WHY:

The last few days I’ve been really focusing on EATING INTUITIVELY. And NOT BINGING.

I’m done counting calories. That was short lived.

I eat when I’m hungry. And I’m hungry a lot.

It’s not easy Β to teach myself to listen to my body’s hunger cues since I have been ignoring them for the last year, BUT I feel so much better when I’m giving it what it wants instead of depriving all the time!

I’ve also been eating almost NO dairy! Sometimes I’ll sprinkle a little feta on my eggs or on salad and I put 1/2 cup of fat free milk in my smoothies, but other than that I’ve been DAIRY-FREE! Oh wait, the protein powder I use is Whey, but I only use it like, once a day.Β I never meant to start eating less dairy, with my dad losing his job we just can’t afford extras like Greek yogurt and cottage cheese (my favorite dairy products!).

I’ve also been drinking LOTS of water! I feel like I’m ALWAYS in the bathroom now, (TMI?) but that’s a good thing! If your pee is yellow and you’re not peeing every few hours Β (TMI again? Sorry!)…you’re not staying hydrated!

Also, I’ve been eating almost no sugar. My only source of sugar lately has been agave nectar in baked goods or on French toast. And I use it sparingly!

I also have STOPPED worrying about FAT. Thanks to Carrie’s post, especially! That post really hit home with me. I used to DEPRIVE myself, and put limits on how much fat I could eat. Then I would always end up having a BINGE FEST with the peanut butter jar, anyway! So, that definitely wasn’t working! Now I eat fat at every meal in some shape or form! It helps keep you full and satisfied and is also DELICIOUS!

On top of all this, I eat WHOLE, REAL, NON PROCESSED foods. No crazy additives, no super scary ingredients. I eat whole grains, vegetables, fruit and I’ve been trying to eat less meat and more plant based proteins!

So….yeah! I bet my clear skin is a combination of all those things! I definitely hope this clear skin sticks around! I wish my Dermatologist that we paid SO MUCH MONEY for had told me to eat a REAL FOOD DIET! That would have been helpful!

33 Comments leave one →
  1. May 18, 2011 3:25 pm

    My skin is something I’ve strugged with as well, so I feel you girl! I’ve tried the more water thing but it literally makes me pee every 5 min which totally interupts my life! (Try running when you have to pee every 5 min, you don’t get very far!!) Anyway, I’m glad you’ve discovered what helps you! I’ve tried cutting out dairy before as well, but I love my greek yogurt so much!!

  2. May 18, 2011 3:29 pm

    Looking at you I would have never guessed you had struggled with skin problems in the past. Your skin truly is so clear and perfect!
    It’s interesting that eating less dairy has helped you, I’ve heard of it being a problem for a lot of people. Personally it doesn’t affect me so I don’t think I’ll be giving up my love for cheese anytime soon. πŸ˜‰
    I too think drinking lots of water helps and also, I swear by Proactiv. ha, for me that stuff works wonders. Of course, I eat a healthy diet too so maybe that’s why I have clear skin and I just think it’s the Proactiv. ha, either way I am so grateful that I don’t have to deal with skin problems.

  3. The Teenage Taste permalink
    May 18, 2011 3:50 pm

    I’ve been lucky enough to be blessed with good skin, but I still suffer from breakouts and dry spots every once in a while. Diet is huge in helping with that! It’s the only thing that works! πŸ˜€

  4. May 18, 2011 3:51 pm

    Loved, loved, loved this post!!! πŸ˜€
    I’ve also definitely had skin issues, but have noticed a lot of improvement after balancing my diet out!!!!!

  5. May 18, 2011 4:47 pm

    I’m so glad that your skin is looking clear, girl!!

  6. May 18, 2011 5:11 pm

    IM SO HAPPY FOR YOU!! u have made such awesome strides.. and seriously im so freakin happy that my post has helped you! that truly makes me SO SO SO HAPPY!!! YAY FOR CLEAR SKIN- join DA CLUB πŸ™‚

  7. May 18, 2011 5:39 pm

    Great post!! I wish more people would understand the way you do that sometimes the simplest changes yield the best results!! You know, like you don’t need to buy fancy products to have clear skin! Less is definitely more πŸ˜‰

  8. May 18, 2011 6:34 pm

    It’s great changing your diet helped out so much! That was definitely my problem too. I used to eat cheeseburgers and a mound of fries for lunch everyday only to go home to drink tons of sodas and stuff my face with more junk. My face looked horrible as a result. It wasn’t until I started eating healthy that it all cleared up!

  9. May 18, 2011 6:43 pm

    I have a couple breakout issues in a few areas and dry on the rest, so its really awful. I think these are some awesome tips. I realized that when I eat whole, nonprocessed foods and limit dairy my skin instantly gets clearer!

  10. May 18, 2011 7:10 pm

    I love what you are saying in this post!! Eating intuitively is so hard to do and I’m having a lot of trouble with it. I think it will be a lot easier during the summer when I can really listen to hunger cues. I also think that eating unprocessed foods, less sugar and less dairy contributes to healthy skin. I need to work on all three!

  11. May 18, 2011 7:13 pm

    I always struggled with my skin in middle and high school.. even in to college I tried proactive, retinols.. prescriptions.. done it all.
    I’ve never really made the connection until now – but I think the change in my eating habits – about a year ago – have REALLY helped my skin. I still get the occasional zit… especially near my period..but that is normal! Eating better is definitely related to my skin looking more fresh!

  12. May 18, 2011 8:05 pm

    LOVE the idea of real, unprocessed FOODS!! You go girllll πŸ˜€

  13. May 18, 2011 9:38 pm

    My skin still breaks out like crazy. This week I have limited the milk I drink, but I still have Greek yogurt. I don’t know if I can give up dairy.

  14. May 18, 2011 11:40 pm

    I feel like doctors know these things but they never tell us…seriously eating good delicious food is so much easier than paying buttloads for acne medicine so why can’t they just help us out a little bit? Rant aside, I’m glad your feeling better about your sounds like your diet is super super healthy and nourishing!

  15. May 18, 2011 11:50 pm

    I used to have such problems with my skin too and I think it was because of my diet and that I wasn’t drinking enough water. Now that I eat cleaner and drink a ton of water, my skin is the smoothest and clearest it’s ever been. I also use an aloe system from the Body Shop that I think helps. πŸ™‚

    Glad to hear that your skin is getting better!

  16. May 19, 2011 12:05 am

    It sounds like you’ve got great perspective on your eating habits! That’s awesome. I like you new outlook. Intuitive eating is really hard, especially when you’re not used to it, but like anything, I’m sure you will find it gets easier with time!! Good luck πŸ™‚

  17. May 19, 2011 1:12 am

    I’m so happy for you!! That is so great, Kayla. How awesome that you’ve finally found something that works… and it isn’t an expensive treatment! Also, it’s great that you’ve learned to follow your body’s hunger cues and eat intuitively. I am all too familiar with the deprivation thing. I still struggle with it on a daily basis. But I am so much happier and healthier (mentally and physically) when I just trust my body!!

  18. May 19, 2011 1:13 am

    yay this is awesome!!! ive found for myself that eating intuitively and not depriving yourself is really important for my skin because a lot of skin breakouts actually come from STRESS. so if you are stressed out about food all the time, your skin will more likely be stressed as well!!! i also eat very little dairy, some sugar because i like it =) and TONS of fats + whole grains – im also loving my skin at the moment =)

  19. May 19, 2011 9:02 am

    Eating real food does numbers for your skin! Dairy totally helped mine – I mean it’s not even like you have to give it up completely just reduces your intake seems to help loads!
    Congrats on eating intuitively!
    FATS are amazing on so many levels.

    P.s I used to eat several bowls of ramen when I was a kid too. I used to make the best ramen . All the kids came over to my house so I could make some for them πŸ˜›

  20. Molly @ Mollyrunsfresh permalink
    May 19, 2011 10:16 am

    This post was great! I have battled blemishes since 6th grade but didn’t start eating clean until high school. It has improved my skin incredibly! I ditched proactiv, monocycline, and acne-free for fruits, veggies, and whole grains and saved a ton of money and tears! I also think use Bare Minerals helped a lot because my old makeup had so many chemicals.

  21. May 19, 2011 11:11 am

    That’s so awesome that your skin has cleared up!! I’ve struggled with skin problems for what seems like forever and I definitely notice a change based on what I’ve been eating! πŸ™‚

  22. May 19, 2011 3:06 pm

    YOU GO, GIRL! how great does it feel to listen to your body and eat accordingly?!

  23. May 19, 2011 3:22 pm

    Girl, I am so sure that you are right about why your skin is glowing! Getting processed stuff and sugars out of your diet help SO MUCH! Especially when you replace them with healthy fats and veggies! πŸ™‚

  24. May 19, 2011 3:52 pm

    So glad everythings going good for you πŸ™‚ ive just been doing similar things with my diet, Id been binging quite a bit due to not eating enough during the week and been managing my eating more and things seem much better!

  25. May 19, 2011 4:11 pm

    great job girl! I have cut out dairy (besides some whey protein post workout) and my stomach has felt a lot happier. I always used to break out when I used cow’s milk. And yes, fats rock! They make my hair and skin so silky and smooth!

  26. May 19, 2011 5:30 pm

    Kayla– I can feel your amazing sense of accomplishment through my computer screen! I have naturally good skin (which is interesting– my mom and little sister have bad skin, and my dad’s is good, but mine is better than his :D). I never sunburn and I don’t where makeup. But I know from living with people with similar issues how hard it can be.

    (well I suppose another reason my skin is so clear is becuase I went vegan around the time I hit puberty– then as it progressed my diet got better and better. Then I hit disordered eating which threw everything off, but that’s another story).

    I am so happy for you! Here’s to the wonders of a good diet!


  27. May 19, 2011 6:17 pm

    What great tips! I always used to struggle with my skin but I’ve noticed quite an improvement since changing my diet!

  28. May 20, 2011 9:21 am

    is canned beans processed food?

    • May 20, 2011 2:51 pm

      Good question! I guess cooking beans at home is healthier, but I don’t think there’s anything wrong or extremely processed about canned beans. Just watch out for added colors and sodium!

  29. May 21, 2011 5:18 am

    Hi Kayla:)
    Im so happy for you that you are working on your eating habits! I really belive intuitive eating is the only thing that can ever last! Im working on this soo much at the moment too! Listening to my body sounds like such a easy thing, but I find it hard! Im so scared Ill eat to much, so I keep restricting myself! But, I start over every day, and cant wait til I really trust my body πŸ™‚
    Good luck on your way! This is the first time I comment on your blog (I think), but I have read it for a while and love it! So sorry bout your Dads job!
    Have a nice day πŸ™‚

  30. theflourishingfoodie permalink
    May 21, 2011 11:54 pm

    I can completely relate to everything you said in this post! I’ve had acne issues a long time and have tried so many different things without much success. I’ve never admitted it to anyone but one of my main reasons for adopting a healthier diet was because I thought it would help clear my skin. Unfortunately, I haven’t been very strict about my diet lately and I think it’s negatively affecting my skin. I honestly was never strict enough for long enough to see huge results. But, looking back, in the fall when I ate very little dairy my skin cleared up some. I just didn’t totally realize it at the time. I want to go a week completely dairy free and sugar free, I know it would be great for my skin. I’m so glad you’ve found what works for your skin though! There are so many benefits to eating a healthy diet πŸ™‚

  31. spoonfulofsugarfree permalink
    May 22, 2011 1:49 pm

    Yay!!! So glad! I definitely think healthy eating=clean skin. I have never had skin problems (THANK GOODNESS!), but started eating healthily before the hormones kicked in. I gave up dairy and sugar before all that stuff πŸ˜‰ So glad I did!

  32. May 23, 2011 5:47 pm

    Kayla, I love love LOOOOVVVVEEEEE this post!!!! You are spot on girl!!! πŸ™‚

    HEALTHY EATING EQUALS HEALTHY SKIN!!!! I had to bookmakr this!! I love it so much!! πŸ™‚

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