People seem to start looking for an acne rosacea diet once they realize that all the creams, gels and other pharmaceutical medications your physician or dermatologist may prescribe, only work for a short while. Let’s face it, rosacea acne is something that originates from inside you, so all the ointments that you rub into your skin can only have limited effect. The problem will keep “popping up” if you’ll pardon the pun.
The bottom line is, that when you experience acne rosacea symptoms, your body is trying to tell you something. So it makes sense to clean up your insides and give your immune system a fighting chance.
Acne Rosacea is not Acne
Before we get into our acne rosacea diet recommendations, we should first explain that there is a difference between acne and rosacea. The term “acne rosacea” has been coined because some rosacea symptoms resemble acne breakouts. But they are definitely not the same. Acne is the result of skin pores that have become blocked due to secretion of oil from your sebacecous glands. The blocked pores then collect bacteria and when your immune system comes to attack the bacteria, inflammation is the result. The typical sign of acne is the blackhead, which is absent in rosacea.
Rosacea on the other hand, is a vascular problem. The blood capilliaries are closer to the skin surface than they need to be. When these become dilated they can become more susceptible to any toxins or mites that inhabit your skin or pores, resulting an infection that looks like acne. Not all rosaceans get acne like symptoms though – there are other types of rosacea too. In summary, whereas acne is a blocked pores problem, rosacea goes deeper into the genetic makeup of the individual. For this reason, we need to come at it from the inside and cleanse and strengthen our vascular system to minimize breakouts.
So let’s look at the best diets for rosaceans . . .
Many years ago, a crazy naturopath put me on a strict vegan detox diet. I’m not recommending you ‘go vegan’ here, but I want to share this with you because the experience proved something to me. I was only allowed to eat fruit, nuts, seeds, legumes and vegetables for a period of time. Oh yeah, I almost forgot to mention the colon cleanses, but you don’t want too much information. I also had to try to swallow this horrible powdery stuff called “spirulina” and take detox tablets. When I complained to the naturopath that it was all making me feel light-headed, he said that I should drink more water to keep hydrated. Being the kind of person who will “try anything once” I went along with it until I reached a point where I decided that, for other reasons, I couldn’t do it anymore.
But one memory sticks with me. I have naturally oily skin and I noticed that during this cleansing diet, my skin became less oily and took on a smooth, clear silky texture. Other people noticed it too. So the thing I learned from my cleansing experience, was that a healthy diet will reflect on your skin.
The Alkaline Acne Rosacea Diet
Why an alkaline diet? The reason is, because our bodies naturally release lactic acid through sweating, exercise or any kind of movement. This makes our blood acidically inclined, so if we add more acidic content in the form of certain food types, the result will be unbalanced and toxic.
In addition to this, it is also well known that stimulants such as tea, coffee, alcohol and excessive sugars are vascular dilators, which is the primary cause behind rosaceans flushing and other associated symptoms.
So the theory behind the alkaline acne rosacea diet, is to consume products that will serve to neutralize the naturally acidic state that comes as a by product of our bio-energy generation. The diet consists almost entirely of vegetables – particularly green leafy ones, juices, soups, low sugar fruits, pure water, salads and omega oils.
You should avoid all soda drinks containing aspartame or sugar, as these stimulants have been found to produce redness in about 30 percent of rosacea patients. Anything designed to awaken the nervous system and potentially increase stress levels should also be avoided, because stress causes our sebaceous gland to produce excess oil which has to leave our bodies via the pores, contributing to acne papules and pustules. Also avoid acidic foods like chocolate, crisps, sweets, dairy, coffee, processed foods and bad fats.
The best acne rosacea diet will include the following:
- Use fresh vegetable juices. Consider buying a juicer and a book on juicing.
- Eat berries (low sugar fruits), e.g. bilberry, blueberry, blackberry, etc. for vitamin C and bioflavonoid content.
- Avoid foods which cause flushing, e.g. hot drinks, spicy foods, alcohol, coffee.
- Avoid beef, pork, lamb and the skin of chicken and turkey, as well as dairy produce. These promote inflammation.
- Avoid fried foods for the same reason.
- Avoid salt and sugar.
- Allow food to cool slightly before eating it.
- A vegetarian or vegan diet may be best suited.
In addition, you should also include:
- A multivitamin and multimineral
- An antioxidant formula
- Digestive Enzymes, and
- An omega oil blend
It should be noted that in the end, nothing you eat will ultimately disturb the pH levels (acid vs alkaline) in your blood because your body will continually work to correct the balance. However, before the correction takes place, inflammation will occur and damage will be done, including the unpleasant rosacea symptoms that trouble you.