4 Ways to Reduce Acne

Dear Dr.Kim

I have developed acne on my face over the last 6-months even though I am in my 20s and it wasn’t too bad as a teenager? Do you have any suggestions for my skin?

G.M. Victoria

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Dear G.M.

Thank you for your question. Skin health can be an important outward barometer of inner health. Our body has 4-5 routes of elimination: the skin, the urinary tract, lungs, the bowels, and menstruation. Commonly, when elimination through the digestive tract is compromised or burdens on health are high, other pathways of elimination begin to get congested.

Assuming you are putting a good effort into washing your face and staying hydrated, success at solving skin ailments can come from assessing the balance between burdens on the body and areas of vulnerability. Three frequently sites of burden or compromise are found in the hormone balance, digestive system, and at the liver. These three groups actually interface as hormones impact digestion; digestion clears nutrients and microbial metabolites to the liver and the liver breaks down hormones and compounds for elimination or circulation.

It is important to note that transit time from eating to eliminating should be 24 hours and so if you are eating throughout the day then you should also be moving things out multiple times per day. I like to say –have you ever looked after a toddler? ;) As we move through life and establish health or lifestyle habits, it is common for people to shift off a baseline of optimal elimination.

There are several things you can consider to help pivot your inner health and when there is change within, you can look for improvements in your acne.

Begin your day with ½ lemon in warm water. Lemon is bitter and so it encourages your gallbladder to contract which helps to get bile and digestion moving.

Make sure you are having several servings of vegetable each day. Vegetables are a nutrient-dense source of fibre that will help ensure you have enough bulk to support elimination.

Add a daily probiotic to your routine –to strengthen digestion of food and support balance of gut microbes.

Consider adding liver herbs to your plan. Herbs such as Dandelion, Artichoke, Burdock and Barberry stimulate bile flow from the liver/gallbladder into the start of the small intestine. Enhancing bile flow helps balance the pH of the digestive tract, balance microbiota and encourages elimination of waste.

If your plan is on track, you should be noticing some change within the first month and then month over month. Looks to have no new blemishes appearing and then clearing of old ones. The key is finding the source of burden or disharmony.

I hope these suggestions help you abolish the acne.

“Health from the inside out.”

Dr. Kim McQueen, ND