How I cleared my cystic acne.
Its funny. When I look back on my teenage years in high school, I honestly thought that my skin issues would eventually subside one day. I never thought that at the age of 27 years old, I would still be dealing with the battle of acne and the snowball of emotions, thoughts and feelings that came along with it.
I know that talking about this publicly is going to reach so many young women, even men, in the same position that I was in about a year ago. A year ago, I had acne all over my face. It was heart wrenching - how vain does that sound?! But it was. It was so bad that I would run late for appointments and meetings because I would underestimate the time It would take me to cover it up with makeup… I could literally spend hours trying to cover it up - which only made it worse. I would call in sick to my job or cancel plans with girlfriends because I didn't want to be seen in public.
Many of you know I work in an operating theatre at times as an anaesthetic nurse… Well, there were days there were I would literally grab myself a mask that was only meant to be worn in sterile conditions and walk around for my entire shift with one on so I could cover my face up. I spent hundreds of dollars worth on treatments to try and combat what was happening on my face - microdermabrasion, skin acid peels, laser… you name it (thank goodness my mother is a skin specialist - she really did help me control my skin and helped me in so many other ways… emotionally and mentally… more than she’ll ever know).
A client of mine who recently went through a similar thing with her skin explained it perfectly. She said her acne was worse than feeling overweight. She said "It’s on your face, people talk to you and look straight at your face and it's something that you just can't hide. You see people’s eyes zig zag from left to right, subconsciously or maybe consciously judging your face and you cant help but wonder how it looks at that very moment in time. Are they looking at my face? Does it look bad? Has my makeup worn off?”.
She was so right, those of you in the same boat would know that your confidence reaches an all time low. You go through waves of emotions of having a ‘good day’ followed by a ‘bad week’ where your skin just does its own thing and is so unpredictable. In a day and age where you feel as though looks sadly matter - it's every girl's nightmare.
Well today - I am acne free. Actually I’m 100% pimple free! And I'm going to share with you what I did to combat 15 years of acne issues. YES 15 years! ZOMG. Thanks goodness it's over.
It started in my early teens for me, I was 13 years old, I guess my hormones kicked in and it snowballed from there. I didn't have the best diet back then believe it or not (fizzy sugary drinks, lollies, chocolate, not so healthy lunch boxes because I was a fussy child & hated fruit), plus I was dealing with stress from trying to be an academic at school, plus other stressors of being a young teenager… boys, fitting in, sports, acceptance. It was certainly a collection of things that contributed when I look back now. How I wish I could teleport to my high school self and just give myself a big hug now.
Today when someone asks me for advice on skin, the first thing I say is (and I wish I knew all this all those years ago), whats happening on your skin is indicative to whats going on inside your body. Its an inflammatory response. Our bodies have this amazing power and beautiful capability of sending us messages about what's going on inside, but sadly this isn't taught to us in school or at any point in our lives actually. We’re not taught to read messages and become intuitive with our bodies and treat the underlining issue, we’re taught to go to a doctor for a prescription, go to a chemist, purchase a ridiculous amount in dollars worth of pharmaceuticals and mask symptoms with bandaid fixtures instead.
I spent 18 months on roaccutane at the age of 17 years old. One of the most potent pharmaceuticals known in the medical industry. So toxic that if a woman falls pregnant on this drug she is forced to terminate her pregnancy. So strong and harmful on our bodies that our lips crack and bleed, your eyes stop producing natural lubrication so eye drops 3-6 times a day are a regular routine thing, your skin totally stops producing natural oils so your flakey, dry and you don't heal as quickly if you cut or burn yourself. Your gums bleed, your nails don't grow, your hair looks as dry as a hay stack from a farm barn and your joints and muscles take such a hit that any form of exercise or movement, even yoga, is a no deal. And guess what, 18 months went by, my skin was clear for 6 months, and then I found myself at square one. If I knew the things I know now about roaccutane, I wouldn't have ever gone anywhere near it not even with a 10 foot pole. Especially now knowing I was able to heal myself so simply and naturally.
Fast forward to 2015 and I'm 27 years old, still combatting acne. Not so bad - but it's still lingering around at this point in my life. You can check out my photos above. The before photos were taken last year in June, 2015. At this time in my life I had spent 7 years studying subjects pertaining to health. Exercise science, nursing, nutrition & health coaching. So my lifestyle and habits changed and my skin improved, but not 100%. I was lucky enough that my mum was a specialist in the cosmetic & skin industry and was able to help me out with treatments for my skin to keep it under some type of control. The things I changed were:
- diet and lifestyle habits including how i ate, when i ate, stress & the types of exercise I did,
- balanced my hormones (several ways - that's for another blog),
- completely removed dairy from my diet,
- decreased my intake of wheat & gluten (I'm not gluten free because I don't need to be, but phasing this out and reducing it certainly has helped) and,
- included a daily support in my regime via a wholefood supplement.
This combo = magic!
If you check out my blog archive, you’ll see I went to The Democratic Republic of Congo (The D.R.C) last year in August 2015 to work in a small hospital theatre in the town of Goma for just over a month. You can read about it here. Before I left for Congo a good friend of mine, Dr. Anthony Golle (you may know him from the amazing documentary Overfed & Undernourished) introduced me to something that was absolutely life changing. Not only for my skin, but for so many other aspects of my health that I'm about to share with you that I honestly won't ever have anything to repay him back with.
He introduced me to the only product in the world that is organic, natural and 100% whole food put into a vegan capsule. Yep, crazy. No added anything, no sugar, no preservatives, no additives. JUST fruit, vegetables and berries. There's nothing in the ingredient list except for actual food and it even has a nutritional label... something you don't see very often on the back of the bottle of any capsule.
When I was introduced to this product I was actually sold on the fact that the product contained 27 different serves of organic fruit, vegetables and berries in the capsules. They're picked at their most ripest state, made into a big old smoothie, dehydrated at a low heat so the enzymes are still active and THEN encapsulated into a vegan capsule. I was about to hit one of the most poorest third world countries in the world where vegetables and fruit, and any type of nutritious food for that matter, was totally non existent so taking this product over with me was a total no brainer. Um hellooo, 27 different serves of real food in one hit - YES PLEASE SIGN ME UP. Not to mention it has over 20 published medical and scientific research journals and 10+ more currently underway. I’m a girl who does her research, and they had me at hello.
You're probably wondering what fruits, berries & veggies have to do with skin, right? What began to happen to me when I implemented all this high quality nutrition into my daily diet - I don’t even know how I can put this in words to make you understand but I’ll try. I travelled to Goma with a team of 10 surgeons, anaesthetists, nurses, physiotherapist’s and administrative staff. We all worked a ridiculous amount of hours in extremely tough conditions with a poor diet of just bread, rice and potato for the whole month, and for some reason - I was the only one who didn't get sick. I was the only one who didn't suffer from some type of gastro bug, cold or flu symptoms, bloating, digestive issues, sickness or lethargy. In fact my energy was at an all time high the entire time (not like my colleagues who needed naps and sick days off in between), my immune system was pumping and to be honest I only noticed on the plane home when I realised how unwell the others felt, and how unreal I felt. When I stepped off the plane to meet my family, the first thing everyone noticed was my skin. Not a single blemish in sight. And I had just spent a whole month in a third world country, in a high stress environment, with no nutrition & hardly any sleep or exercise.
Today, I implement that entire combination I mentioned above in my online program The Healthstyle Emporium. Why? Because everyone needs to bridge that gap (even health nuts like me). It's amazing what a bunch of veggies, fruit and berries in your daily diet will do to you when put hand in hand with some lifestyle changes - energy increase, sleep quality increase, cravings decrease, skin, hair and nail health multiplies by 100 fold, weight loss is a dream, memory and concentration goes through the roof ... the list positive effects goes on & on.
The Emporium was created to make people realise we REALLY don't need to do anything to crazy to change our health other than flood our bodies with the delicious nutrients, enzymes, vitamins and essential micronutrients that our ancestors grew up on & that our bodies so deliciously thrive off. The second thing we need to do is simply implement some healthy lifestyle habits and look at our health holistically, I call it going back to basics.
After 15 long years of trial and error, i figured it out. And I want to show you how easy it is!
Whether you’re wanting to:
- Clear your skin,
- Lose weight,
- Improve your lifestyle, health & happiness,
- Learn how to make delicious, easy and healthy meals,
- Introduce yoga, meditation & relaxation into your life,
- Decrease stress,
- Learn all there is to know about nutrition & exercise,
- Be kept accountable,
- Improve the appearance of your skin, hair & nails,
- Treat uncomfortable digestive issues,
- Have a support group where you know you're not alone,
- Or you just want to improve your general overall well being, feeling & motivation
Pretty much, have a total life flip...
Then I'd love for you to join us in The Emporium, where you'll have access to all of our resources, monthly educational webinars, one on one coaching, access to our amazing team of health professionals & where you can dive deep on our meal, exercise, yoga, and meditation guides. The best part about it… your kids get to be apart of the emporium and have the wholefood component FOR FREE. Increasing the value of life for our little humans in our lives … energy, behaviour, immune, concentration...
If you feel like this blog resonated with you, I would so love to hear from you & I would so love to help you. I personally respond to every single email that comes through my inbox so if you feel the universe tugging at you to hit that ‘contact me’ button. Please do. I’m here waiting & I can't wait to meet you.
Wishing you health & happiness,