Saturday, May 10, 2014

Acne - Vitamins, Herbs and Other Natural Treatments

Acne is caused largely by the overproduction of sebum, an oily substance that causes the pores of the skin to become blocked, resulting in spots or pimples. They are found on the face, though they may extend to the shoulders, back, arms and chest. The condition is particularly common in the adolescent years due to hormonal changes.
Acne occurs in two main forms:
  • acne vulgaris - affecting the hair follicles and oil secreting glands. It manifests as blackheads, whiteheads and inflammation and

  • acne conglobata - the more severe for with deep cysts formation and subsequent scaring.
Acne is frequently treated with antibiotics. Tetracycline is the antibiotic that is frequently prescribed for the treatment of acne. The most common side effect from treatment with tetracycline is the overgrowth of candida albicans and other yeast in the gastrointestinal and genitourinary systems.
What you can do to treat acne
The natural approaches to acne treatment include the following:
  • The place to start is with internal cleansing. This means that you will be clean from the inside out. It is really the only effective way to deal with acne in the long term.

  • Restrict foods that do not support the immune system. These foods include: dairy products including goat milk and yoghurt, eggs, grains, especially gluten rich grains such as wheat, oats, barley and rye, sugar salt, excessive animal fats and artificially coloured and preserved foods. In particular it is important to remove any chocolate as it contains sugar, dairy products and fats.

  • The diet should include plenty of fresh vegetables and needs to include garlic, onions, ginger, leeks and horseradish in the foods.

  • Drink of a lot of pure filtered water.

  • Commence probiotics (friendly bacteria) to establish the correct balance of bowel flora.

  • Avoid medications (if at all possible) that can lead to acne. These include: anabolic steroids, such as testosterone, corticosteroids such as cortisone and prednisone, oral contraceptives, progesterone and drugs containing bromides or iodides.

  • Avoid exposure to oils and grease particularly in skin creams and cosmetics.

  • Commence a good multivitamin and mineral supplement and omega 3. It is thought that acne may be caused by deficiencies of vitamin A, vitamin B6, essential fatty acids (Omega 3), zinc (take a zinc supplement 30mg every day) and vitamin E.

Herbal treatment
Herbal treatment can include the following mixture:
  • Cleavers 1 part
  • Echinacea 1 part
  • Figwort 1 part
  • Poke root 1 part
Place these herbs into a pan and add a cup of boiling water. Allow to stand for 10 - 15 minutes and strain out the herbs. This tea should be drunk three times per day.
Additional herbs that could be used include dandelion and yellow dock.
The following mixture will be of assistance and can be taken for a while:
  • 1 part blue flag
  • 1 part cleavers
  • 1 part echinacea
  • 1 part figwort
  • 1 part poke root
Combine all the ingredients. Take 1 teaspoon of the herb blend and place into a suitable sized saucepan and add one cup of boiling water. Allow this to stand for 10-15 minutes. Strain out the herbs. Drink 1 cup three times per day.
Externally a lotion or infusion of the following herbs will be useful:
  • 1 part marigold
  • 1 part chickweed
Distilled witch hazel will also be useful as will frequent washing with pure non drying soap.
In addition to these factors you also need to work on generally improving you general health - follow the guidelines for healthy living that have been provided in earlier articles. In particular if you smoke you need to quit. Join Growerz for the support and assistance you need to stop smoking for good. You will also benefit from cleansing your body - clean your body and skin - from the inside. This is a skin that will be healthy and acne free.
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