Welcome to My Journey to Clear Skin – Part Two – Diet Changes! Over the past few months I have made two major changes to my diet that have already showed positive benefits to my skin and overall health. I do suspect that they might just be the most important steps in this whole journey. You know what they say “beauty starts within!”
The first major change I made was eliminating dairy from my diet. I had heard over and over again that dairy can be a major contributor to an acne problem. Here are the main reasons why the internet thinks dairy could cause acne or make existing acne worse:
• It’s full of natural growth hormones that are great for baby cows, but not so great for your skin. These hormones have been thought to boost testosterone levels in humans which could trigger more sebum production and lead to breakouts.
• All animal proteins are thought to be inflammatory to the body and have been linked to disease. But dairy’s proteins have been most linked to skin problems, especially whey and casein proteins.
• dairy is hard to digest, even for people without a known allergy. Having optimal digestion is great for your whole body including your skin.
Those are just a few of the reasons I found on why dairy could mess with your skin. They may or may not be true for everyone or true at all as a matter of fact. But I was totally willing to give it a try to see if eliminating dairy from my diet could help. I have also seen and heard so many personal success stories that I thought I couldn’t disregard it any longer.
• Earth Balance Spread • Cashews (soaked and blended to make creamy sauces, yum!)
• Coconut Yogurt • Silk Vanilla Coconut creamer for coffee
I first heard about The Beauty Detox Solution book a few years ago when my friend Sandy introduced me to the Glowing Green Smoothie. A start-your-day-off-right smoothie that is full of greens and actually tastes really good! Just one recipe/suggestion made by author Kimberly Snyder. I did make it off and on for a while there, but like with a lot of things in life it faded into the ether of my brain. In other words, I forgot about it.
Fast forward to about a month ago when Sandy and I are leaving our boxing class and I start complaining about my breakouts. ” Did you find the glowing green smoothie helped ” Sandy asks. “Maybe?” I think I said, but in all honesty I don’t think I ever gave it a fair shot. That small conversation got me thinking about how maybe just eliminating dairy wasn’t enough. Maybe I had to really clean up my diet and eat healthier all around. In the past I had been resistant to admit my skin issues had anything to do with my diet because I love food of all kinds! And I didn’t want to have to change that.
With that being said, I still felt it was time for me to get my hands on the book and give it a read. It didn’t mean that I had to follow along, but at least I would know what it is all about.
The Beauty Detox Solution book is hard to categorize. It’s a healthy eating/daily detoxing kinda book. It’s not a diet plan nor does it require you to calorie restrict. It teaches you how to change the way you think about food and to be more mindful of when and what you eat. Although if you are eating a lot of dairy, a ton of carbs and packaged foods to begin with this plan will require you to change a lot. Just FYI.
– the main part of your diet will be “beauty foods” – all vegetables (especially greens), fruit, nuts, seeds, grains and healthy starches.
– a limit on animal protein to a few times a week (or completely eliminate)
– eliminate dairy and gluten from your diet
– a focus on healthy food combining and timing during the day (like eating heavier meals later in the day)
– a focus on healthy digestion
– adding in probiotic rich foods to your diet like raw sauerkraut
The theory behind the eating plan is that you will be eating mostly whole, nutrient dense plant-based foods. Which will allow for better overall health and easier digestion. Freeing up your body’s “beauty energy” to focus on building muscle and creating healthy hair, skin and nails rather than struggling to digest processed foods and animal proteins. In a way it sounds kinda hokey, but really the basic idea is a sound one.
Like with most eating plans I have modified this one to fit my lifestyle. I’d say I’m at about 85% following it. There are just a few things I can’t give up quite yet and possibly never will.
• Peanut Butter. Kimberly claims that peanuts are prone to mold and fungi that are potentially toxic. To me this was a major bummer, but I will still eat it in moderation. Because I love it and besides what isn’t “toxic” these days!
• Cashews. They have the same issue as peanuts apparently. I do love to use cashews for cream sauces when cooking vegan recipes. This is also only once in a while, so not a huge deal.
• Coffee. Because coffee! I do only have one cup a day, but my morning quite time with my glorious coffee is too precious for me to give up. Sorry not sorry.
• I do eat a bit more animal protein and beans/legumes than suggested in the book. I still struggle with the belief that my body requires more protein. In the book Kimberly talks about how we have been brainwashed to believe that our main source of protein needs to come from animal products. I do believe that you can get enough protein from a plant-based diet, but she also suggests not eating beans or legumes because they combine starch and protein (a no-no for proper food combining). I’m still just trying to sort this puzzle out for myself, so in the meantime I will give my body an extra shot of meat, protein powder or beans from time to time.
• I do still sneak in a bit of gluten here and there, in the form of bread mostly. Kimberly is not a gluten fan because of how genetically modified wheat has become. Wheat alternatives get the green light and I have myself stocked up with those so I’m prepared at home. It’s just the occasional time when I’m out and about and refuse to stress too much about it.
So as you can see I am not a stickler for the rules. I do truly believe that if an eating plan makes your life unenjoyable you won’t stick with it. And my life wouldn’t be the same without peanut butter and coffee, plain and simple. I still think you can gain a ton of benefits from this plan whether you follow it to a T or just mostly follow it like me. Even if you just add in the Glowing Green Smoothie to your diet you will still reap major benefits.
All and all I dig this book and feel way healthier and lighter eating this way. I also don’t find it too restricting (probably because I’ve modified it!) I could have stuck with just eliminating dairy but I wanted to bump up my plant food consumption as well. The Beauty Detox Solution will help you do both of those things and more.
As for my results so far – better digestion, clearer, plumper and brighter skin, sustained energy and mental clarity. Which is enough motivation for me to keep going and to see where this journey takes me!
Up next in my clear skin journey I’ll share with you all the makeup changes I’ve been making lately. I’ve been testing some wonderful all natural, organic brands!
∗ Here’s a quick link to a very helpful post if you’re new to the world of green smoothies. It will help you get started or get you out of a green smoothie rut with tons of tasty recipes!