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Aww, thanks Cashewboy & Joeh =)

Exercising is another way to decrease insulin resistance. I too sweat during workouts, but I've never broken out as a result of the sweat. I know some do major weight lifting, and feel that may have a slightly opposite effect, but I don't know. Then again, how many of these people are also consuming the wrong protein shakes (ever try rice protein powder?) and carb loading (to produce testosterone)?

As for as the sex = acne part, well yeah it's possible. A major testosterone increase is absolutely synonymous with sex. The problem here for those of you that have found that you only breakout after sex or that it gets worse after sex, may be that you are deficient in something. Of course, acne sufferers are always deficient in at least one enzyme, nutrient, etc, right? ;-)
Well here's a few possibilities:

[B]Zinc Deficiency:[/B] May hold true more for males, I don't know, but it (along with B6) is a DHT (and aromatase) inhibitor. Zinc also inhibits DHT indirectly by being apart of 13-cis retinoic acid (natural accutane) synthesis from Vitamin A in your body. Hmm, or maybe that is the mechanism as to how it is a DHT

[B]Aromatase Deficiency:[/B] This is the enzyme responsible for converting androgens into estrogens. This is a way to keep things balanced in the body, and more particularly for a woman, if this enzyme is defective....then we've got too much testosterone floating around that [I]could[/I] cause damage. DHT inhibitors (natural or synthetic) work by inhibiting the conversion of DHT, but they also inhibit the conversion of Estrogen from Testosterone. So this may be a good or a bad thing depending on your needs. There are good and bad estrogens. The bad estrogens feed certain types of cancer and since DHT inhibitors work to prevent those as well, it makes sense to partially block this action. Of course, some men and women have noted that they have increased breast growth, therefore, it can't be blocking that much estrogen conversion (supposed to be blocking the bad estrogen). ;-) There are natural ways to boost aromatase.

[B]SHBG Deficiency:[/B] This is the protein that is used to bind steroid hormones in the blood. While it can also bind estrogen, it has a much [U]greater[/U] affinity for binding androgens. The funny thing is that the [U]more[/U] androgens in your blood, the [U]less[/U] SHBG there is. While the [U]more[/U] estrogens in your blood, the [U]more[/U] SHBG there is. This may be due to the fact that your body produces Testosterone, before it will produce estrogen (as you need aromatase). So when you boost estrogen, such as during the use of BC pills or HRT, you are boosting your SHBG levels. Thus, it makes sense that the more testosterone you have the less of this protein you will have to help balance things out. There are natural and synthetic ways to boost estrogen production, thus boosting SHBG.

[U]So what are these natural ways to boost aromatase and SHBG? [/U]
Well some are herbals, others are B Vitamins or other vitamins, and others are through the avoidance of Insulin or IGF-1 Spiking/Mimicking foods. Of course if you combine all of these in the correct amounts for [U]you[/U], youíve got a super fighter against these hormones.

1. I think most of you are aware of some of the herbs and dietary factors, but I think all of us, are not fully aware of the importance of a vitaminís role. Most of the [B]B Vitamins [/B] (along with their cofactors) play some role in hormone production.

*Some metabolize cholesterol, thus leaving less of it to be converted into steroids (B5, Niacin, Inositol, Choline, Lecithin, Folic Acid, Biotin, B2).

*Others are apart of Insulin balance (Biotin, B2).

Others boost digestion (B12)

*Others boost production of estrogen (Folic Acid - B9, PABA, B12).

*Others prevent the conversion of DHT (B6, B2).

2. Prometheus first brought this next supplement to my full attention. She said that it was good at retaining Calcium, Magnesium, & Vitamin D in the body, thus may help with osteoporosis. This supplement is known as [B]Boron [/B] and there are studies supporting the above. That alone, makes it sounds so amazing, but on top of that, studies have suggested that it has estrogen mimicking abilities or estrogen (& testosterone) boosting abilities. On the other hand, [B]Manganese[/B] is also estrogen-like, and is responsible for boosting the above minerals, but high levels of Boron will deplete Manganese (high amounts are toxic). LOL, itís a delicate balance here, but itís a shame itís not talked about more often, let alone used in most Bone or Calcium supplemental formulas.

3. Another supplement is that of [B]Flaxseed[/B]. Apparently [B]fiber[/B] has the ability to balance sugar & fat levels, and reduce bad estrogens, testosterone, and other toxins. However, when you use a particularly type such as phytoestrogenic [B]Lignans[/B], you can also mimic good estrogens. So by consuming ground flaxseed (has the highest content of lignans), not only do you get your DHT fighting omega 3s, but also your good estrogen & SHBG boosting lignans. Of course since it is a natural DHT inhibitor & Aromatase inhibitor, you are slightly raising your regular testosterone levels, but that isnít as bad as DHT. Itís very weird balance they way these work, but nature knows best.

4. For now, the last supplement Iíd like to mention is that of [B]Probiotics[/B]. Good bacteria are involved in many processes of the body. They help metabolize certain foods that we canít and they also help boost or even create select acne fighting B Vitamins. One such good bacteria that boosts estrogen and phytoestrogen metabolism is Acidophilus.

Therefore, that may explain why Natural Accutane (if any of you saw that post), Vitamin B5 Therapy, Optizinc+B6, D-chiro Inositol or Myoinositol (working on as a prescription), and what Iíve recently discovered thanks to another, Mega Folic Acid Therapy, yield results that aid in clearing the skin, require select B Vitamins.

As for me, Iím currently looking into Folic Acid therapy as means of controlling my hirstuism so that I donít have to go back on Spiro. Various drugs, Bacterial infections, alcohol, a zinc deficiency, or a vitamin c deficiency can lead to poor folic acid metabolism. Furthermore, I found out that BC (estrogen) can leach folic acid. Maybe it does so due to the fact that you are already receiving estrogen, so why does the body need to naturally produce more estrogen. BC may be acting as a sort of negative feedback mechanism, so once a women goes off these, maybe this is why her acne may appear to have worsenedÖ. Just a thought.

The thing is, these vitamins do work together, so if you are supplementing at mega, but not toxic, amounts (dietary levels are not always significant enough), you may want to ensure you are also taking a B Complex or a Multivitamin & Mineral formula to keep things balanced. Just because B Vitamins are water soluble, doesnít mean that they wonít throw off your balance with other vitamins or essential B Vitamins. A good example of this is those that do use B5 Therapy, they found they needed not just a B Complex, but specifically additional Biotin to prevent hair loss.

Hope that inspires you some =)

P.S. There are studies dating back to 1976 that have supported that certain forms of acne, incl. a type of rosacea, are increased with B6 or B12 supplementation and is also more prevelant in females (past puberty). This may have something to do with the amount supplemented and one's gender, but I've always heard that B12 can cause breakouts. Perhaps due to the mechanism for which B6 works and Flaxseed (some have reported breakouts), it is possible that this can cause flare ups in select individuals. I suppose if that happens then you are closer to understanding the form of hormonal imbalance (or it could be an allergy) that you have.

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