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Acne vulgaris is an inflammatory disease of the skin that affects those areas containing the largest sebaceous glands, including the nose, central forehead, cheeks, middle chin, back, and trunk. Acne is characterised by small cystic eruptions and inflammatory lesions that are generally more severe and prevalent in males, but more persistent in females.

Acne most typically appears during adolescence as the sebaceous glands under the hair follicles are sites for hormone synthesis, which escalates rapidly during the teenage years. This process causes blockage of hair follicles, leading to the formation of small cysts called comedones. The transition from a comedone to a pustule is caused by a bacterium called Propionibacterium acnes, resulting in inflammation and infection within the follicle wall.

Resolving persisting and severe acne requires careful consideration and support of all the potentially relevant factors, including a thorough review of

  • Family history
  • Medication use
  • Occupational and environmental exposures
  • Digestive health
  • Cosmetic use
  • Menstrual cycle history
  • Stress (nature, degree, and duration)
  • Accompanying systemic illness
  • Diet

Supporting an optimal diet is an essential part of supporting the resolution of acne. This may include the detection of key trigger foods via food sensitivity testing. Generally the following are important:

  • Avoidance of a high glycaemic diet as it elicits an endocrine response that simultaneously promotes unregulated tissue growth and enhanced androgen synthesis (Smith et al 2008)  A low glycaemic load and high quality protein diet (animal and vegetarian)  is associated with reduced lesion count.  In addition, irregular dietary patterns were found to aggravate acne
  • Avoidance of trans-fatty acids, found in margarines, spread, frying and cooking oils, are associated with increased inflammatory markers (Jung et al 2010)
  • Zinc has been recognized for its potential effectiveness in the treatment of inflammatory acne.   Foods rich in zinc include pumpkin and sunflower seeds, ginger, herring, oysters, whole grains
  • Vitamin C: 500mg twice daily
  • Vitamin E: 400-800 IU/day
  • Vitamin A: 5000IU/day
  • Essential fatty acids – Omega — 3 fatty acids Recommended dose:3g/day (equivalent to 360mg DHA and 540mg EPA) (Hechtman 201
  • Appropriate gut repair, pre and probiotic support

Contact Judith today for more information about optimising your skin’s health and recovery

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Judith Magee is an accredited and registered Homoeopath, Naturopath, Herbalist, Nutritionist and Health Educator, with post graduate training in Holistic counselling. With over 20 years spent in private practice, Judith provides safe, effective treatment for a wide range of chronic and acute conditions, combining the best of clinical experience with the latest in technology and integrative health advances.

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