Does dairy cause acne – how do I cure acne?

Yes it is confirmed – dairy does cause acne. The billions of cows that we kill for dairy, unintentionally returning the gesture.

As our dairy consumption has increased over the last 100 years so has the number of people with acne. We now have over 17 million acne sufferers in the U.S alone, costing health care in the States over $1 billion a year. Eighty to ninety percent of teenagers suffer acne to varying degrees. But this is not just prevalent in teens, millions of adults are suffering too

The pimply millions rely on infomercial products hawked by celebrities or over-the-counter lotions, cleansers, and topical remedies. Recent research suggests that it’s not what we slather on our skin that matters most but what we put in our mouth.

Many have suggested a diet-acne link, but until recently it has not been proven in large clinical studies. Instead dermatologists prescribe long-term antibiotics and Accutane, both of which may cause long-term harmful effects. In 2009, a systematic review of 21 observational studies and six clinical trials found clear links. Two large controlled trials found that cow’s milk increased both the number of people who got acne and its severity.

The dietary pimple producing culprit – diary, cause spikes in certain pimple producing hormones. Dairy boosts male sex hormones (various forms of testosterone or androgens), increases insulin levels. One does not need pills to cure acne, the cure is at the end of ones fork.

Nutritional deficiencies as well as consuming dairy worsens acne. Correcting common deficiencies including low levels of healthy omega-3 anti-inflammatory fats, low levels of antioxidants such as vitamin E, zinc, and vitamin A, and including an important anti-inflammatory omega-6 fat called evening primrose oil are helpful in preventing and treating unwanted acne. One can correct and incorporate all of these nutritional elements of ones meal plan through a well balanced healthy vegan diet.

Stay away from dairy and avoid acne:

One scientist referred to milk as a “complex aqueous, suspended fat, liposomal, suspended protein emulsion”. What we do know is that milk is designed to grow ‘things’ – namely, babies – and in the case of cow’s milk, calves. It is naturally full of what we call anabolic hormones.

These are mostly androgens (like testosterone) and growth hormones including insulin like growth factor 1 (IGF-1). There is no such thing as hormone-free milk.

Here’s a short list of the 60-some hormones in an average glass of milk – even the organic, raw, and bovine growth hormone free milk:

  • 20α-dihydropregnenolone
  • progesterone (from pregnenolone)
  • 5α-pregnanedione
  • 5α-pregnan-3β-ol-20-one, 20α- and 20β-dihydroprogesterone (from progesterone)
  • 5α-androstene-3β17β-diol
  • 5α-androstanedione
  • 5α-androstan-3β-ol-17-one
  • androstenedione
  • testosterone
  • dehydroepiandrosterone sulphate acyl ester
  • insulin like growth factors 1 and 2 (IGF-1 and IGF-2)
  • insulin

This is what our governments suggest we drink —at least 3 glasses a day according to the mypyramid.gov website. Those guidelines have been strongly criticized by many including leading nutrition scientists from Harvard such as Walter Willett and David Ludwig.

The famous Nurse’s Health Study examining health habits of 47,000 nurses found that those who ate dairy as teenagers had much higher rates of severe acne than those who had little or no milk as teenagers. If you think it is the fat in milk, think again.

It was actually the skim milk that had the strongest risk for acne. In other studies of over 10,000 boys and girls from 9 to 15 years old, there was a direct link between the amount of dairy consumed and the severity of acne.

It is not just the anabolic or sex hormones in milk that causes problems but milk’s ability to stimulate insulin production. Drinking a glass of milk and eating dairy spikes insulin levels by 300 percent. Not only does that cause pimples, but it also contribute to prediabetes. This is true despite studies funded by the dairy council showing that milk helps with weight loss.

Recent studies also show that sugar and refined carbs (a high-glycemic diet) cause acne. More importantly, taking sufferes off dairy and sugar and putting them on a healthy vegan diet resulted in significant improvements in acne compared to a control group eating a regular, high-sugar nonvegan diet. In addition to less pimples, the participants lost weight, became more sensitive to the effects of insulin (resulting in less pimple-producing insulin circulating around the blood). We know that women who have too much sugar and insulin resistance get acne, hair growth on their face, hair loss on the head, and infertility. This is caused by high levels of circulating male hormones and is called polycystic ovarian syndrome but is a nutritional, not gynecologic disease.

But the dietary influences don’t stop there. It is not just dairy and sugar, but the bad fats that we eat that also contribute to acne.

So consider getting an Oil Change:

Non vegan diets is full of inflammatory fats – saturated fats, trans fats, too many omega-6, inflammatory, processed vegetable oils like soy and corn oils. These increase IGF-1 and stimulate pimple follicles. Inflammation has been linked to acne, and anti-inflammatory omega-3 fats help improve acne and help with many skin disorders.

Balance the hormones that cause skin problems:

The link is clear – hormonal imbalances caused by ones diet triggers acne. What we put into our mouth influences sex hormones like testosterone, IGF-1, and insulin, which promote acne. The biggest factors affecting hormones is the glycemic load in diets (which is determined by how quickly the food that one eats increases blood sugar and insulin levels), and the dairy products one eats. The great news is that going vegan balances those hormones. Exercise also helps improve insulin function.

How to prevent and treat acne:

1.Stay away from dairy. Milk is nature’s perfect food – but only if you are a calf.

2.Eat natural sugars such as those from fruits.

3.Up fruit and vegetable intake. People who eat more fruit and veg (containing more antioxidants and anti-inflammatory compounds) have less acne. Make sure to get  5–9 servings of colorful fruits and vegetables every day.

4.Get more healthy anti-inflammatory fats. Make sure to get omega-3 fats and anti-inflammatory omega-6 fats (evening primrose oil).

5.Include foods that correct acne problems. Certain foods have been linked to improvements in many of the underlying causes of acne and can help correct it. These include turmeric, ginger, green tea, nuts, dark purple and red foods such as berries, green foods like dark green leafy vegetables, and omega 3.

6.Antioxidant levels have been shown to be low in acne sufferers. So up antioxidants, also up zinc citrate, as well as vitamin A.

7.Probiotics also help reduce inflammation in the gut that may be linked to acne. Taking naturally fremented probiotics can improve acne – kombucha etc.

8.Avoid foods you are sensitive to. Delayed food allergies are among the most common causes of acne—foods like gluten, dairy, yeast, and eggs are common culprits and can be a problem if you have a leaky gut. More people are sensitive to these culprits but just don’t know it as yet. More than 75% of the world population is actually allergic to dairy and it shows up in more ways than one.

Following these simple tips will help you eliminate acne and have that glowing skin you have always dreamed of. And it’s much cheaper (and safer) than expensive medications and dermatologist visits. Go vegan – watch pimples disappear.

Have you struggled with an acne or skin problem? What seems to be a problem for you?

Why do you think we are encouraged to consume so much dairy when the risks to our health (and our skin) are so high?

What other steps have you taken to fight acne? What has worked? What hasn’t? Please leave your thoughts by adding a comment below –

To your good health – vegan love.

Switching from dairy to nut milk is easy.

You have never thought about switching from dairy to nut milks – why not? Nut milks are so much healthier for you than any dairy product ever produced – you don’t know how? It’s so easy – here’s how: this is all that you need to do it.

This is why you want to make the switch: Dairy is cruel there is no logical argument to prove otherwise. Dairy is the cause of most  illnesses including the common cold, all inflammatory related illnesses, diabetes, obesity, osteoporosis, allergens etc.  – so it’s something that you want to avoid. It’s unhealthy in that it contains, violence, blood, puss, antibiotics and unhealthy fats. It’s calcium content which is meant for the babies it was made for leaches calcium form our bones causing aches and pains and premature aging. 75% of the worlds population is allergic to dairy. The dairy industry is one of the major contributors to climate change as well as land, water and air degradation. The dairy industry is also a major contributor to poverty and hunger, as well as ‘slavery’ and animal exploitation but only because humans ‘demand’ it. Switching to nut based milks improves both our physical and mental health in that they offer us healthy fats, omega’s, essential oils, feeding our body with high foliates, magnesium, tons of vitamins and minerals and they taste delicious – nut milks feed our brain – decreasing brain related illnesses such as dementia.

What you will need: Your favourite nuts. Blender. Nut bag. Bowl.

How to make: Soak your favourite nuts overnight in water – this releases their enzymes and creates a ‘sprouting effect’, making them so much easier to digest. Add  a handful  to your blender,  top up your blender with about half a litre of alkaline water.  If you would like your  nut milk to be more creamy or thicker,  add more nuts to less water or the other way round for a thinner texture. If you like your milk with a little more  flavour you could add a couple of drops of natural organic vanilla, a pinch of cinnamon, a couple of majool dates  – though just the nuts on their own are stunning too.  Blend for about 30 seconds. You can drink just like that  a little chunky or, if you like your milk very smooth – you can strain that through a nut milk bag. This you can then bottle up and keep in your fridge, use in your recipes –  you can also make ice cream out of it etc. Making nut milk is so much easier than you thought –  go on – make the switch for all the right reasons. Get off of the toxic dairy train. Go vegan today.

Vegan Chef On The Run

Got the facts on milk?

For years we have understood that abstaining from red meat is an important way to avoid disease, and tread lighter on the planet. Growing research now shows that avoiding dairy products is just as key, after all, it does come from the same cow, and it certainly isn’t natural. 

Got the facts on milk? 

The Journal of the American Medical Association – Pediatrics published an editorial that might surprise you. The authors, Dr. David Ludwig and Dr. Walter Willett – both of whom are physicians and professors at the Harvard Medical School – strongly question the consumption of cows’ milk, even by children.

Quoting their article, “Dairy milk evolved to promote the growth of grazing animals at high risk for predation when small. The consequences of lifetime human exposure to the growth factors in milk have not been well studied. Milk consumption increases serum concentrations of insulin-like growth factor 1, an anabolic hormone linked to prostate and other cancers. In addition, modern industrial methods maintain dairy cows in active milk production throughout successive pregnancies, resulting in a milk supply with high levels of reproductive hormones.”

They cite a large body of research to support their claims. Adequate calcium, they point out, is easily obtained from other sources. They note that dairy consumption is not protective against bone fractures and that it is strongly correlated with prostate cancer. As Drs. Ludwig and Willett say, we’d do much better getting our nutrients from diets that include green leafy vegetables, legumes, nuts, seeds, and adequate protein.

None of this is news. That this advice is appearing in one of the world’s preeminent pediatrics  journals highlights its importance.

Safeguarding personal health, of course, is not the only good reason to avoid dairy products.

Dairy cattle, like all cattle, are surprisingly heavy polluters.

Cows belch a lot of methane ¨C by most estimates 100 to 200 liters per day. Because methane is some 34 to 86 times more potent a greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide (depending mostly on whether one counts its effects over 100 or 20 years, respectively), this adds up to a huge impact on the climate. In fact, when one does the arithmetic, this amounts to about the same global warming effect, per cow, as a car.

Cows also produce a lot of manure. According to the BC Ministry of Agriculture and Food, better than 2 cubic feet of the stuff a day. Besides polluting our waterways and our drinking water, this manure is responsible for enormous amounts of ammonia pollution. Indeed, the majority of all ammonia pollution comes from cows. Much of this becomes nitrous oxide in the atmosphere, a gas which, at 300 times the effect of CO2, dwarfs even methane in its global warming potential molecule for molecule.

There is also indirect pollution involved in dairy production. Most important among those is the effects of corn and soy production. The great majority of corn and soy in North America and elsewhere is grown to feed animals. This is incredibly inefficient all around and cows are just about as inefficient as inefficient can be. According to Vaclav Smil’s careful analysis, some 95% of the protein taken in by cattle is lost to humans. We get only 5% of what we fed them back. This is made all the worse since it requires enormous amounts of fertilizers and pesticides to produce all of that corn and soy. Much of the fertilizer runs off into water ways and creates dead zones in lakes and bays and even the Gulf of Mexico.

All in all, dairy, like other animal agriculture, is highly polluting and highly wasteful. The fact is that dairy, like beef, is among the worst polluters, animal per animal, on earth.

And then, there’s the plight of the cattle themselves. Like humans, cows have to give birth in order to produce milk. So, the cows are artificially inseminated once each year. Nine months later, a calf is born. Almost always, 24 to 48 hours after that, the calf is taken away. This causes great emotional pain both for the mother and for her offspring. Former cattle rancher Helen Weston describes how the mothers react: “The cow is an exceptionally loving and gentle creature. She cries for days when her calf is taken from her. It is a pitiful sound, a pitiful sound.”

Female calves are usually allowed to live. She’ll be raised to be another dairy cow. If the calf is male, however, he may well be quickly killed. Or he may be raised for beef. More likely, though, he’ll be sent to a veal farm instead. At the veal farm, he’ll probably be fed an iron-deficient gruel so that the meat will be pale.  He’ll likely be chained by the neck in a tiny stall – with no room to walk or even turn. At 16 weeks of age, he will be sent to slaughter. The veal industry would not exist were it not for the ‘surplus’ (i. e., male) dairy calves.

Dairy cows are bred to produce unnatural amounts of milk. Annual milk production per cow has more than doubled since the 1940s. The cows routinely suffer calcium deficiencies and painful mastitis. And, while their natural lives would span some 25 years, they are sent to slaughter before their fifth birthday. They become hamburger and “processed” beef.

We don’t need dairy. It does a great deal more harm than good. So, eat like the doctors from Harvard suggest. Adopt a high quality diet filled with beans and grains and leafy greens and nuts and seeds. Your body will be better off. The world will be better off. And fewer cows will suffer so.

~ Active Vegan ~