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No Dairy? No Sugar? What Really Works for Clearing Up Acne


isabel-marantThis column features tips and advice from a revolving cast of industry leaders on hand to discuss your beauty dilemmas, from blemishes to Botox.

I’ve heard cutting out dairy and sugar can help clear up acne. True? I want to be sure before I make the sacrifice.

Yes, studies link a diet high in dairy and sugar to acne, sadly. The same research also shows acne sufferers tend to have low fish intake and high saturated and trans-fat levels. It seems that this kind of diet can induce insulin and sebum production in the skin, which can aggravate acne. So avoiding sugar, high-glycemic-index foods, and cows’ dairy, and taking a probiotic (at least 5 billion organisms) would be the first step. Next, I would recommend a dietary supplement containing specific nutrients: zinc, B-complex, vitamin A, vitamin E, and copper, for example, have been shown to clear up 88 percent of patients’ acne in eight weeks (with 76 percent citing this blend as effective as antibiotics). Herbal medicine can help as well. An individualized consultation is best, but I often find that a formula with skin depuratives, immune boosters, and lymphatic stimulants is very successful. I developed a version, called Fresh Faced Skin Tea, which targets all these areas. If you can’t get ahold of this, taking burdock tea three times a day along with an echinacea (thirty to forty drops of tincture) is a good alternative. Lastly, if your breakouts are hormone-related, add in the hormone-balancing herb Agnus castus in the morning (twenty drops of tincture). Stick with this regimen and your acne should clear up in two to three months.

A leader in herbal medicine, Daniela Turley is a board member of The American School of Natural Health, a member of The American Herbalists Guild, and The College of Practitioners of Phytotherapy. Born and raised in England, Turley received her bachelor of science in herbal medicine, and held an honorary position at the Hale Clinic, the renowned complementary health center in London. In 2011, Turley moved to the New York City where she joined the practice of Shellie Goldstein Acupuncture.

Photo: Sonny Vandevelde;

The Doctor Is In