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If you think there is a definite determinant to your acne, you may want to read my story.

Who? What? Where? When?

The fact is, you could be feeding your acne problem and you don't even know it -- because apparently, "your diet does not contribute to your acne." Well, think again.

I've always had very mild acne on my face, until my second year of University when all of a sudden I started developing more blackheads on my forehead and back. Regardless, I knew it was moreso hereditary than anything. But suddenly last summer, when I began developing the occasional acne lesion below the skin, I became worried. Only intensifying on my forehead, I really had no idea what was causing the sore bumps to hang around, and eventually scar my skin. And the fact that they would appear on an on-and-off basis together with my mild acne, it was reason enough for me to start investigating the problem.

So I first went to my dermatologist... I told him of the acne forming under the skin, how long the bumps took to go away, and the scarring that took place as the result. He really didn't have much of an answer for me -- so I decided to do some Internet research on the topic combined with following my daily habits to try and determine why they would pop-up on a seemingly random basis.

Gradually, I started to check off most of the culprits I had set aside to be the cause. Marijuana, beer, lack of physical activity, excessive fast food consumption, lack of sleep, lack of water -- they all passed the test, although some of them more than likely contributed to my mild acne somewhere along the lines, but that was beside the point

No, not until about a year later did I discover the immediate culprit -- and it's amazing that more documentation isn't available to us as patients on the subject matter, because we deserve it. Especially after being told time and time again, our diet does not show immediate reflection on our acne cases.

Anyways, without rambling too much more, I was in the mall the other day when I decided to hit the food court for a sub. Not sure if anyone has tried a sandwich place called 'Quizno's' -- it may be solely Canadian. Anyways, I got some sort of steak sub that I thought would taste good, which ended up tasting terrible. Largely because of the excess of onions, green peppers, and tangy sauce -- each item of which came with the sub by default. So me not being a picky kid, I sucked it up and ate the majority of the large sub.

And boy did I pay for it. But maybe the consequences were worth the findings.

I had been relatively clear on my forehead for weeks, in fact, I hadn't had a pimple form under my skin for about a month to the day. All of a sudden, that evening, my forehead (where I usally develop most of my acne) began feeling really uncomfortable -- as if it were overheating. I remember being at school, and wondering what the hell type of poison they put in my sub.

Lo and behold, when I got home from school late that nite... I noticed that my forehead had broken out more than I had seen in quite some time, and damnit, I had developed another pimple under the skin. It was already becoming sore, and I was terribly upset over the finding. And then I began thinking that this was my opportunity to identify the culprit for many reasons:

1.) I had been clear of any significant acne for quite some time (approx. 1 month).

2.) Being at school almost all day, I didn't eat or do that much to provoke the acne flare.

3.) Obviously, something I did over the course of the day had immediate relevance to why I had broken out again.

It must of been the sub. Not long after getting home, I began thinking of that sub and what was on it. It had bread of course, but I love bread and it eat quite frequently. It had cheese, but I love cheese, and eat that quite frequently too. It had steak, but I knew that wasn't it because I'm an avid meat eater. It had some sort of tangy sauce, but I'm always trying out sauces on stuff (I like fatty stuff at times). The only two things I could think of, were the excessive amount of onions and green peppers put on the sandwich. Neither of these two toppings, I eat very often.

So I did a search on !Yahoo for "acne onions". Lo and behold, there is a stir around the world that onions can cause the inflammation of acne. But see, I knew it must of been much deeper than that, it had to be something in the actual onion. Finally, I came across the overall culprit:

Iodine (aka the silent killer)

The mineral can be found in a lot of what we consume. In fact, it's present in cheese, broccoli, mushrooms, carrots, gatorade, and a lot of vitamins we take among many other things.

But only when taken in excessive amounts does it irritate the skin -- albeit it is not very hard to reach your excessive daily intake. In fact, some items are so rich in Iodine that they can put you over the recommended level of Iodine intake (which is 'apparently' 150 micrograms per day) almost immediately. Onions, which are grown in iodine-rich soil, kelp, *milk* (wow eh?), spinnach, cabbage, brussel sprouts, are just a few of the more rich Iodine cotaining items.

The list goes on really. I think it is very important to weed out the ones that are heavily contaminant of the mineral. For instance, onions are a no-no for me from here on in. Because I had previously linked milk to be a culprit (I thought it was the excessive dairy intake but I was wrong) I rarely drink it now.

Anyways, my point is made -- Iodine 'is' a culprit despite what any dermatologist or individual has told you, and if you do Internet research on the relation between acne and Iodine, you will soon find out the truth yourself. In fact, if you are a trying individual, conduct a self-study where you use your own case as the guinea pig -- testing different levels of Iodine... I mean, a lot of us, what do we have to lose?

I suggest you also research which items are way too rich in the mineral, to limit your daily intake. I can get by on things like cheese, and fish, but seemingly can't when it comes to things like onions, and milk -- and how coincidental is it that both are apparently extremely rich sources in Iodine content?

It's one thing to suggest chocolate does not contribute to your acne (which is true), but it's another to blatantly suggest that nothing we consume contributes to the disease. And I question how many dermatologists are aware of the direct relation that I, a friggin' University kid with no medical background (but a persistent case of acne), was able to find.

Hope this helps, and sorry for the novel.


[This message has been edited by Matty (edited 02-16-2002).]

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