If you have acne prone skin you know exactly what I mean by "four letter word", and you've probably found yourself in front of the mirror uttering plenty of four letter words on occasion. Acne is incredibly frustrating, hard to treat, and hard on your self esteem. There are different grades of acne- but what do they have in common? Inflammation (with the exception of Grade I, which is fairly responsive to OTC treatments) . Redness, swelling, and pain. They have other stuff in common, too. Bacteria, hormonal imbalance, stress, and excess sebum production. But let's just take this one thing at a time. Inflammation first.
Why do some people tend towards inflammation? The tendency comes from within, most specifically the digestive system. "Hey miss know-it-all, what does my tummy have to do with my skin?" you might ask. Well let me explain. It's a matter of modern diet: refined sugar and carbohydrates, allergenic foods like milk and wheat, and a shift in EFA levels (the most common modern EFA is Omega 6, which is pro-inflammatory). So here's what you do: stop eating refined sugar, cut way back on the simple carbs, the milk & wheat, and the omega-6 rich oils. That is easier said than done... But it's worth it for more than just acne, reducing inflammation is really important for overall health.
Supplements you can take to support your digestive health:
Garden of Life Omega-Zyme Ultra Ultimate Digestive Enzyme Blend, Capsules, 90-Count Bottle
Take with meals to help your body make the most of the foods you eat, and combat inflammation.
Planetary Formulas Triphala Internal Cleanser, 16 oz (454 g)
This stuff is a digestive system toner- strengthening & toning the walls of your intestines. To make this into a tea pour boiling water into a mug, gently place about a teaspoon of triphala powder into the mug and allow it to settle. Don't stir this unless you really like bitter, awful tasting tea. Let it steep for 10-15 minutes and then drink it. It's best before bed, it'll keep you regular in the morning.
Eclectic Institute Inc Turmeric, 50 Caps
Turmeric is amazing for inflammation. I think everyone should take it.
Another internal organ worth talking about is the liver. The liver is the body's main detoxifying organ, it filters the blood and makes bile (bile sends toxins to the intestines where they can bind to fiber & be excreted... unless you don't eat enough fiber). I'm having a hard time really explaining the wonder-organ that is the liver so check out this website for a really detailed education. The most important thing you can do for your liver is take Milk Thistle. You can also eat some yummy vegetables like beets, carrots, burdock, and artichoke. My favorite Milk Thistle supplement is the freeze dried capsules from Eclectic Institute.
In the next installment we'll tackle topical anti-inflammatory products.