Do you often wonder, “Does chocolate cause acne?” The old time physicians used to believe that chocolate was related to acne. Someone came along in the 1960’s and did a study and showed that chocolate did not cause acne. That study was part of Harvard dermatology resident bibliography.
And so the training programs all over the country in the early 70’s taught those residents; taught those dermatologists in training that acne had nothing to do with chocolate. Which was of course a great news for all kids because people love chocolate. The problem is, that acne can be aggravated by chocolate in a significant number of people. And so for a generation or so we used antibiotics to suppress the acne that was being caused by the chocolate. In the past a dozen years or so somebody came along and re-examined that study and showed that, that it was not true. The conclusions were not based on sound data, and that there is some aggravation of acne by chocolate.
Now it could be for several different reasons. It could be from the chocolate, it could be because a lot of chocolate is milk chocolate, and some people react to milk. And it also could be because of the amount of sugar, and also because people who are eating chocolate are eating other sweats with sugar in it. So there are a number of things that tie chocolate eating to acne. So it’s important nowadays for people who have acne to seriously consider removing chocolate from their diet and seeing if that makes a difference.
3 HIDDEN HORMONES IN FOOD THAT CAN CAUSE ACNE~BEST NATURAL ACNE TREATMENT
There are various types of hormones that aggravate acne. Some of those are seen with your own cycle if you are a female and with puberty if you are a male. There are also hormones in the food that can disturb your hormone metabolism and aggravate the acne and cause it to be worse. Those include the hormones present in milk and dairy products because cows are usually pregnant when they give milk, as well as hormones injected into cows to produce bigger cows or more milk such as bovine growth hormone. That type of hormone can also be in meat if you are eating beef that has been injected in that way.
Sometimes, hormones are injected into other animals like the necks of chickens, to fatten them up. Finally, there are hormones which are much weaker, but are present in other kinds of foods because of the nature of the kinds of food itself or because they are added in as preservatives. For instance, soy has some hormone-like activity.
So too, do various types of preservatives that are used in foods and creams and topical products. Now those are fairly weak, but when you use them on a repeated basis, day after day, you do get some significant hormones that can also aggravate your acne and disrupt normal cycles.
I want to speak about the condition that is so bothersome and horrendous that some people can’t even go to work and go out and function normally. The spectrum includes mild forms that are just plain disturbing, to other forms that completely make it difficult to want to be part of a society.
Hidradenitis is an accentuation of what acne is, especially occurring under the arms, in the groin area and elsewhere of the body such as below the breast. This condition is called Hidradenitis Suppurativa. I call it acne from hell. Sometimes involves draining lesions that can be as big as a golf ball or even as big as a baseball.
And the lesions may be draining chronically. It’s not fun. Some of the conventional treatment for this involve cutting the entire area out down through the fat. Current treatments for Hidradenitis are some of the new drugs, which poison the dividing white cells. And those are called biologics. For some they are successful ways of treating their acne.
But I fortunately have been able to treat some of these patients in the way that I treat acne. We avoid foods that are causing inflammation. By making a whole variety of changes in the diet and in the digestive tracks, in the hormones using supplements that contribute to the inflammation involved. So here is another inflammatory disorder that can be controlled by changing the underlying conditions for the inflammation. So, working to reduce inflammation is the one of the best cures for hidradenitis.
That is really one of the questions that has been asked so many times, certainly by teenagers, certainly by drug companies and the question still stands out there. Now, there are many different types of treatments that can make acne get under control. However, the problem is that it often comes back. I think that the biggest issue is that acne is not just a condition.
Acne is a symptom showing that something is “off” in the body. The cure for acne is getting that rebalanced so that the body no longer needs to produce that inflammation that has been going on. This is the start of holistic acne treatment.
Some people ask me, “How can I be breaking out from this food when my friends can eat as much of it as they want and don’t seem to have any problem with their skin?”
Well, acne is caused by a number of different factors and one of them is the hypersensitivity reaction at the level of the hair follicle and the oil gland in the skin. When they have a reaction occurring, there is an accumulation of white cells in that area that are part of this inflammatory process and so a specific sensitivity could exist that’s causing acne.
There are also ways in which acne can cause disturbances of the digestive system or be related to disturbances of the digestive system caused by various foods. People who have that kind of sensitivities of the digestive system can also get in trouble by some specific foods and sometimes from a variety of different foods. This is the start of the best natural acne treatment.
Curious about Natural Acne Treatment? Integrative Dermatology
I want to speak briefly about what goes on in acne from a Holistic Dermatology standpoint. Acne is caused by inflammation in the hair follicle, oil gland, sweat gland apparatus. And that apparatus is known as the pilo sebaceous unit has inflammation and attack by white blood cells that lead to the formation of pus, the redness and the swelling that you see. Part of that process involves inflammation and attack of the normal bacteria that live in the skin, the acne bacteria, corany bacteria and acnes.
But my understanding of acne is that there are other things that are being secreted in that area that we know and other things that are being attacked that comes from your digestive system or come from outside. From outside it could be cutting oils, from inside it could be any kind of food you eat. Changing the diet is extremely important in reducing the inflammation that leads to acne.
Hidden Hormones in your Cosmetic Makeup Causing Acne?
There are a number of hidden hormone-related substances in your cosmetics and in your creams that you apply to your skin that could actually cause damage and even cause cancer.
One of the problems with these creams is that some of them have preservatives and have hormone like activity. Know all that hormone like activity is the weak activity if you apply then on a regular basis day after day, they can influence the subtle interactions of your cells and lead to damage that goes on to cause cancer.
I had a patient who was a model and who actually developed cancer and became a real advocate of using products that were free of these potentially dangerous compounds. Now most people don’t get cancer that we know of from them, but the ones who do are very unfortunate. It’s important to consider the possibility of using a more natural product that avoids hormone like activity when you’re applying it on a regular basis to your skin.
Acne drugs are antibiotics. Because of that, there’s a possibility that the wrong kinds of bacteria or yeast have overgrown in your intestinal tract. You need to remedy that overgrowth so that it doesn’t cause a cascade of problems that makes your acne worse.
The first thing to address is to do whatever is necessary to restore a more normal population of bacteria in your digestive tract and gut.
You may need to make some changes to eat a cleaner diet which basically involves more steamed vegetables and less sugar and dairy.
And finally, your issue is related to hormone activity, you’ve got to reassess all the factors that are aggravating your acne hormonally. Sometimes, that means taking various kinds of herbs and making dietary changes, so that you correct hormonal problems, which can happen when, for example, you are stop and start taking birth control pills. These are a few of the things to consider when your traditional acne treatment stops working, and you are ready to begin looking at natural acne treatment.
Looking for the best natural acne treatment? For many people, acne is a reflection of consuming an excess of sugar. So acne may be one of the first signs that a person is headed for pre-diabetes. Also, in general acne tends to be a sign that people are putting too rich a diet into themselves.
Just like in a car, if the mixture of gas is too rich, the car chokes. A mixture that is too rich into the body can cause problems. In the case of acne, there is usually excessive sugar and inflammation. And with inflammation in the arteries can later be related to heart disease. So it’s important to calm down and treat acne as a symptom–not just as a condition.
What’s the Difference Between Conventional and Natural Acne Treatment
Interviewer: Give us an example of how a Conventional Dermatologist would treat acne as compared with methods you employ with Holistic Dermatology.
Dr. Dattner: As a Conventional Dermatologist depending upon the severity of the acne, I might use some topical Benzoyl Peroxide. This opens up the clogs and calms down any infection in the area. If it’s worse, I’d go to antibiotics, and if it’s worse still, I might even go to Retinoids or oral Retinoids.
In my practice I did a little of those things before I started using more alternative methods. But I began to see some problems with people who had been to dermatologists and been on antibiotics for a long time. They started developing yeast overgrowth, chronic fatigue, and various other problems.
Dr. Dattner: So as a Holistic Dermatologist for the past three or four decades, I work on the digestive tract. I try to get the intestinal organisms more normalized. I try to enhance the digestion. I try to fix leaky gut and inflammation and fix the liver and… I keep working from the bottom up until I have gotten to the skin.
Interviewer: Right, and then the skin is going to react.
Dr. Dattner: Yes.Then I’ll help with drainage products to help the skin. And I get a longer cure when my patients have learned how to take care of themselves.
Interviewer: Yeah, I mean it’s not just putting something topical on–it’s about getting rid of the cause of the problem and following through, right?
Dr. Dattner: Right
Interviewer: And it’s a lifelong change.
Dr. Dattner: Right. And they can still use topicals, but as a part of a larger holistic program of natural acne treatment.