Tag Archives: hygiene

Got Acne?…Don’t Eat Chocolate

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  There is ongoing research of whether or not chocolate causes acne.  Some researchers say these delicious treats may not cause acne directly; however, it may cause certain things to develop in the body that can lead to acne.  

  According to WebMD, young men who ate up to 8 ounces of chocolate saw their number of pimples rise from as low as four to about 70.  Based on observation, the more chocolate they ate, the more they broke out.  

The Experiment: 
   Scientists studied 10 men who ranged in ages 18-35 who were previously diagnosed with acne.  These men were observed by the researchers.  They ate as much pure chocolate as they wanted.  This went up to a maximum of four ounce candy bars.  Then they were told to follow a normal chocolate free diet for a week.  
   At the start of the experiment, the men had about three pimples.  By the fourth day of observing the men, some of them had about 13.  By the end of the week they had about 18.  The men who had less than a four ounce chocolate bar had fewer than 10 pimples the next week.  One young man, who had the most chocolate, had about 8 ounces of chocolate.  This resulted in about 70 pimples by the end of the week. 
Why Does Chocolate Do This? 
   Researcher Caroline Caperton, an MD, stated that people that ate chocolate typically eat chocolate that had sugar, milk, and other ingredients that can aggravate one’s skin.  Some of these ingredients may also include caffeine and theobromine.  These are known for clogging your pores. According to a dermatologist, Dr. Shamban, there is little evidence that fatty foods, such as chocolate, will cause acne.  On the other hand, it has been discovered that foods high in sugar and fat can increase sebum production and promote inflammatory responses in the body.  The increased production of these parts of the body can result in acne.  Over eating too many of these fatty and sugary foods can increase your chances of developing or getting more acne.  
The Solution:
   According to the Huffington Post, dark chocolate, in certain cases, is better for you than milk chocolate.  It is better for your cardiovascular system and for your skin.  Dark chocolate has high cocoa content.  This can result in higher amounts of flavonoids, catechin, and procyanidin.  These chemicals are antioxidants in the body which protect the body’s cells against free radicals.  

   It may not always be the chocolate that is causing the increase of acne, it can be the things inside the multiply in your body.  Certain ingredients that chocolate has can overproduce in your system and cause an increase in acne, especially when you are prone to it.  Although the test study I spoke about earlier in the blog was not done with enough people to really support the case, scientists are doing bigger and further research on this topic to finally be able to come up with an answer. 
  
articles used: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/06/05/does-chocolate-cause-acne_n_1566076.html
http://www.webmd.com/skin-problems-and-treatments/acne/news/20110208/does-chocolate-make-acne-worse

Breaking Out

As an 18 year old who has battled acne since 6th grade, I’ve always wondered: why?  Why is my face so bad when others’ aren’t?  I’ve seen four different doctors, taken over a dozen different antibiotics, and even tried the ever-questionable Accutane.  Now, 7 years later, it’s still here.  So why is it that my roommate can use Dove soap and have a perfect complexion? 

Acne vulgaris (which basically just translates to the “common type”) can pop up basically anywhere from your face, neck, and chest to the shoulders and upper back.  The sebaceous glands create sebum, an oil, and most of the time the glands make an amount that is compatible with the skin.  But, while going through puberty, hormones make the glands produce more sebum.  Because of the excess of oil, the pores become clogged.  Once the pores are clogged up, bacteria can find its way inside and begin to multiply (hence the endless prescriptions of antibiotics).  The results of these bacteria traps are usually redness and swelling (so, believe, it or not, chocolate consumption is not the reason). 

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Unfortunately, the traditional cure-alls don’t always work.  Even if you wash your face religiously and apply two dozen creams and ointments, you may just be that person that can’t shake acne.  However, if your acne isn’t bad enough for surgery (yes, surgery), then there isn’t much to do but wait it out until your hormones are finished transitioning.

Until that time, do not poke, push, or pop any blemishes on your face.  It only leads to more damage such as scarring which can last a lifetime.

 Source: http://kidshealth.org/teen/your_body/skin_stuff/acne.html#

Got acne?

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I highly doubt that I am the only one in this class that struggles with chronic acne. I also doubt that I am the only one who grew up loving milk, ice cream and cheese. I have had several conversations with many dermatologists and most of them have told me that acne is not caused by the food that we eat. I am not trying to undermine their professional opinions because they are all (from what I can tell anyway) well- educated people. However, I’m just not sure that I believe them any longer.

            Some of you may have already heard or read about the suspicions that dairy products are a big factor of sever, chronic acne. Researchers have found a strong correlation between dairy consumption and acne. But wait a sec, isn’t milk supposedly the perfect food? According to Dr.Mark Hyman and Seppo Puusa the answer is no… at least, not for humans anyway.

             The biggest link between milk and acne comes in the form of hormones. Milk is supposed to make living beings grow. As a result it is loaded with hormones such as IFG-1, testosterone and DHT-like hormones that each contribute to milk’s acne-causing status.

            IFG-1 or Insulin like growth factor-1 triggers skin cell growth. Rapid skin cell growth leads to extra dead skin cells, which lead to clogged pores, which eventually leads to pimples.

            Women can sometimes have high testosterone levels. This can cause not only unwanted facial hair growth but also acne in the chin region.

Last but no least the DHT-like hormone is transformed into dihydrotestosterone  or DHT quickly after entering the body. DHT provokes excess sebum production leaving the skin oily and making it more prone to acne. 

In addition to hormones, milk is also full of bacteria, even after pasteurization. Milk can contain measurable quantities of many different toxins such as but not limited to: herbicides, pesticides, blood, pus, feces, and viruses to name a few. Once consumed our bodies attempt to rid our systems of these substances thus causing inflammation and sometimes leading to big red pimples. 

In conclusion, if you are chronic acne sufferer and an avid milk drinker / dairy product eater you may want to consider altering your diet. I know I will be. 

Can Soap Get Dirty?

As I was showering this morning, I dropped my bar of soap onto the (not so clean) floor of the mens bathroom. As I picked it up, I immediately ran it over the water to get rid of whatever germs were on the bathroom floor. Then I thought, is this process of washing my soap getting rid of the germs on the soap? Or does the soap just completely destroy those germs? (because it is soap after all) I didn’t know if it was safe to wash myself with this contaminated soap! I seeked an answer. I realized that I had my…FIRST BLOG IDEA!! So, is there such thing as dirty soap?

Ok, so after a brief google search, I found out some information that helped me solve this epic mystery. Soap is made up of sodium and potassium salts, which come from fatty acids and alkali solutions, through a process called saponification. All of the molecules in soap repel water, and attract oils and dirt. They are trapped, then washed away by water. So, indeed, soap DOES in fact get dirty. But, soap can trap harmful microorganisms from being dropped or sitting on a dirty counter. This does not seem to propose a problem, because of some tests that have been run. In one study, test subjects were given soap with trapped E. coli and other bacteria. They washed up, and nothing was transferred to the hands.
My question was, can soap get dirty. The answer is YES it can, but soap can clean itself, so there is no need to fear some dirty soap.