Antibiotics for Clear Skin? I Think Not….

Antibiotics for AcneSo often I hear from people wanting to clear their skin.  The products aren’t working and it’s time to call the dermatologist.  Let me start by saying, I feel your pain-I get it.  I had acne in my teens.  The dermo. put me on antibiotics and Retin-A and sent me on my way.  Little did I know I had just stepped on a train I couldn’t get off of for years and years.  While the round of antibiotics was only a few months, my stomach issues and skin problems plagued me for years.  You name it, my stomach felt it at one point or another.  The acne cleared only mildly and after about a month of getting off the antibiotics, those zits starting rearing their ugly heads once again.  As a young girl obsessed with being beautiful, dealing with acne was heart breaking.  Dealing with gut issues added to the immense stress I was under just being a teen.  Hind sight is 20/20, huh?

Let me be straight-Antibiotics clear skin.  They do.  The remedy is short lived though.  Little do dermatologist tell you about the side effects this drug will have.  I hate to play this card but antibiotics are a multi-billion dollar business.  Natural remedies like prescribing a diet of vegetables and probiotics are not.  You do the math…. Doctors sure have.

I believe healthy, clear skin begins in the gut.

Yes, the gut! The stomach contains more bacteria then cells in our entire body-this might sound like a bad thing, but when there is a balance of good bacteria and bad bacteria, all is well in the body.  Our gut needs bacteria to carry out the functions needed to absorb nutrients and keep things moving, if you know what I mean….

When you take antibiotics, they kill all the bacteria in the gut in order to fight infection.  When all bacteria is gone, the gut can not function properly.  This is why you get stomach issues when put on a round of antibiotics.  Slowly the body will replenish the bacteria, but in some cases this can take years.

Antibioitics lead to an over growth of Candida, or more commonly known as yeast.  Yeast is a fungal issue.  I believe fungus is one of the biggest causes of acne.  Bad bacteria can cause a yeast overgrowth.  It can also cause damage to the gut wall and lead to leaky gut syndrome.  This condition causes small gaps to open between cells in the intestinal barrier. Through these small gaps bacterial toxins and other inflammatory substances can “leak” into the bloodstream.  Uh, no thanks!

Skin Clearing Antibiotics for acne

What Antibiotics Do To You and Your Gut:

  • Rids your gut of good bacteria
  • Causes Inflammation-Inflammation is one of the leading causes of disease and premature aging in the body.
  • Leaves you vulnerable to depression-There are many cases that link depression and gut issues.
  • Causes nutrient deficiencies.
  • Causes gas, bloating and constipation/diarrhea-cha, cha, cha.
  • Exacerbates food allergies.

Other causes of an unhappy gut

  • Ill management of stress
  • Sleep issues
  • Unbalanced stomach pH
  • Eating processed foods
  • Lack of fiber

PLEASE, think twice before heading to the dermatologist to treat your skin.  It may be a quick fix but the after math is mind blowing.  There are a few things you should do instead.  These might not be quick fixes, but they will help long term.  A healthy lifestyle is something to constantly strive to reach.  Changing some bad habits and starting some good habits can make all the difference in your skin!

Good Habits for Clear Skin:

  1. Take a probiotic daily-this little supplement will help increase the good bacteria in your gut.
  2. Eat lots of YOGURT!  Go for organic, and make sure it states that it contains live cultures.  This is another way to increase good bacteria.
  3. Drink tons of water.
  4. Eat your fiber.  Women should get about 25 grams of fiber a day-YIKES!  Go for beans, veggies and limit your whole grains.  I take psyllium capsules daily to increase my fiber.  Psyllium is like a broom sweeping and cleaning out your intestines!  Prunes are also a good idea.
  5. Steer clear of processed foods.  I’m talking microwave dinners, box dinners, sugary drinks, sugary snacks etc.  Basically, make it a habit to shop on the outside corners of the grocery store.  The inside aisles are mostly processed foods.
  6. Watch your salt intake.  Too much salt triggers your body to retain water.  For me, this throws me off in every way.  The more bloated I feel, the more frustrated I get which leads to bad food choices.

The bottom line is-skip the antibiotics!  It is not the cure you are being told it is.  There are very few quick fixes with skin problems.  Using good products that will calm the skin is very beneficial-Try an Anti Acne Toner with apple cider vinegar and French Green Clay should be your new bestie!   Look into Melaleuca Oil (tea Tree) for applying directly to blemishes.  Lavender essential oil is anti fungal-anything that says “anti-fungal” is probably a good thing!

Take control of your own health-No one is going to do it for you.  While you might be prone to acne more then most, you can take charge of it by changing aspects of your lifestyle.  On the positive side, your skin issues are going to cause you to live a healthy lifestyle which will reward you for the rest of your life!   My hope is that you can enjoy your journey towards healthy habits, knowing you value yourself enough to do the right thing by your body.

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