Schedule An Appointment With A Tampa Dermatologist
Cystic acne can be painful and stubborn, but with enough time, care, and patience, its possible to reduce or eliminate symptoms and feel better about your skin.
If youre struggling with cystic acne and are ready to try clinical solutions, schedule an appointmentin personwith Dr. Lisa Diaz today at our North Tampa office.
Disclaimer: This blog is not intended to substitute professional medical advice. Always talk with your doctor before starting or stopping medications or treatments.
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Supplement With Vitamin D
A Vitamin D deficiency is more common than you may think, with over a billion people worldwide suffering from either a deficient or insufficient supply of this critical vitamin. Vitamin D plays an extremely important role in a number of bodily functions, such as immune function, cell differentiation, and inflammatory response. Low levels of Vitamin D have been associated with an increased risk in colon, prostate, and breast cancer, as well as tuberculosis, influenza, and heart disease. A relationship has also been found between hypothyroidism and a vitamin D deficiency.
Ideally, we would get our daily dose of Vitamin D from 10 to 30 minutes of uninterrupted sun exposure, but this is unrealistic for most. Thats why its important to take a Vitamin D3 supplement and eat foods rich in Vitamin D, such as pastured eggs and wild salmon. Its also important to note that as we age, our production of Vitamin D decreases, so make sure youre monitoring your levels and getting them checked by your primary care provider.
How To Know If Your Acne Is Hormonal
In general, acne is considered to be hormone-related if it :
- Occurs on the lower part of the face, such as the chin and jawline.
- Flares up before your period, during menopause, during pregnancy or other phases of life when theres a significant shift in hormones.
- Becomes worse as you go on or off hormone therapies .
In addition to the above, hormone-related conditions like PCOS can also cause acne to worsen.
This is mainly due to the fact that high androgens and insulin resistance are quite common in PCOS patients. And as weve seen, imbalances in both of those hormones contribute significantly to inflammation and hormonal acne.
NOTE: the tips in this section are general guidelines. The only way to know for sure if your acne is hormone-related to get your hormones tested by a doctor.
Understand How Insulin Impacts Weight
Insulin is one of the most important hormones when it comes to weight loss and weight gain. Made by the pancreas, insulin is responsible for storing blood sugar, or utilizing it, depending upon your bodys needs of the moment. After you eat a large meal, a substantial amount of insulin releases itself into the bloodstream. It also enters the bloodstream as needed throughout the day, ensuring that blood sugar levels remain stable.
Another key function of this essential hormone is fat storage. Insulin decides how much fat to store, and how much to convert for energy expenditure. Chronically high levels of insulin can lead to a condition known as insulin resistance, which is linked to an uptick in blood sugar as well as continued elevated insulin levels.
Preventing this insulin imbalance is crucial, as it leads to weight gain, and eventually type 2 diabetes. When insulin levels remain high over an extended period of time, obesity and metabolic syndrome are often the unfortunate outcome.
What Is The Best Diet For Women With Menopausal Acne
Most dermatologists agree that diet plays a role in acne. Although the exact effect of food on acne is not apparent, it disbelieved that reducing cows milk dairy and high glycemic food and refined carbs can help with acne treatment and reduce the frequency and severity of acne breakouts.
Try to limit alcohol and caffeine and ditch the junk food. To improve your skin and reduce your acne breakouts, look for foods rich in the fatty acids omega-3 and 6, such as oily fish and chia and flaxseeds, and fill your diet with whole-grain, fiber-rich products. Cruciferous vegetables such as spinach, cabbage, broccoli, and cauliflower are beneficial because they contain a DIM compound that helps with hormonal balance. You can also look for DIM supplements .
Drink a lot of water. Dehydration makes your skin rough and dry. When the skin too dry, the skin oil glands produce more oil to moisturize the skin. The excess of skin oil mixed with the dead skin cells clog the skin pores and can cause more acne.
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Reduce Exposure To Hormone Disruptors
Toxins are one of the most common reasons why hormonal weight gain occurs.
You see, toxins cause inflammation, which basically throws your body into a state of confusion.
The most common source of toxins is the food we eat.
Food toxins that contribute to hormonal weight include:
- Processed and genetically modified fats
- Processed sugar
- Processed meats
So, if you want to lose weight fast and reverse hormone-related weight gain, reduce your consumption of these foods and ingredients.
This single step will make a tremendous difference in your bodys ability to shed excess pounds.
Signs Of Hormonal Belly
Indications your hormones are making you put on weight and how to get rid of hormonal belly.
- Less satiated after eating.Suppose a meal that is utilized to fill you up now unexpectedly leaves you desiring more. In that case, it could be a signal that your sex hormones are indirectly impacting your main metabolism-regulating hormones. Estrogen and testosterone are the two primary gamers here.
If you have lower than typical estrogen levels circulating, you may find yourself not feeling as pleased after a meal. This is because of the effect estrogen has on leptin, your satiety hormone. Leptin is launched by circulating fat tissue and tells your brain that youve had sufficient to eat. The more leptin you have distributed in your system, the more satiated youll feel .
In one study, the existence of estrogen was associated with an increased concentration of leptin and, therefore, a decrease in appetite. Thats one reason most postmenopausal women, whose estrogen levels are lower, generally gain fat mass and lose lean mass.
Testosterone, the primary sex hormone found in men, has also been revealed to affect leptin concentration negatively. This implies that as testosterone levels increase, leptin declines due to everything from routinely missed out on periods, PCOS, or chronic stress.
- Constant stress
- Poor sleep
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What Are The Signs Youre Experiencing A Hormone Imbalance
Everyone experiences fluctuations in their hormones across the course of their lives. It may occur when your endocrine system is not functioning optimally.
The endocrine glands are responsible for producing, storing, and releasing hormones into your blood. Multiple endocrine glands control different aspects of your body functions, and can present symptoms like:
Risk Factors And Causes
Hormonal imbalances are multi-factorial disorders, meaning they are caused by a combination of factors such as your diet, medical history, genetics, stress levels and exposure to toxins from your environment.
Some of the major contributors to hormonal imbalances include:
- Food allergies and gut issues: An expanding field of new research shows that your gut health plays a significant role in hormone regulation. If you have leaky gut syndrome or a lack of beneficial probiotic bacteria lining your intestinal wall, youre more susceptible to hormonal problems, including diabetes and obesity. Thats because inflammation usually stems from your gut and then impacts nearly every aspect of your health.
- Being overweight or obese
- High amounts of stress, and a lack of enough sleep and rest
Adrenal dysfunction is the largest cause of the hormonal imbalance with the sex hormones especially because of something called the cortisol steal.
This occurs when cholesterol, which usually helps to make the sex hormones, combines with too much stress and the enzyme 17/20 lyase blocks the conversion the production of cortisol ensues. Cortisol then causes the imbalance of progesterone, estrogen and testosterone, which then decreases the sex drive.
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How To Treat Hormonal Acne
“Preventing hormonal acne might seem like a tall orderit is caused by your hormones, after all but there are a few things you can do, says Love. It requires some lifestyle changes. These breakouts are coming from an excess build-up of testosterone in the body, so you need to get to the root of the cause to determine the right hormonal acne treatment. Ahead, dermatologists share their best tips for how to help treat hormonal acne.
Skin And Hair Changes
Acne. A sudden increase in acne is one easy way to identify a possible hormonal imbalance. One of the few hormones involved is androgens. Androgens, typically referred to as male hormones, but found in both males and females, regulate your skins sebum production. If your body produces androgens in excess, sebum can build up in your pores and cause a pimple to surface.
Hair loss. The quality and vitality of your hair is also directly related to your hormones. Thyroid abnormalities, for example, may cause dry hair or skin, thinning hair, or brittle nails. Hypothyroidism, hyperthyroidism, and parathyroid disorder can also cause hair loss.
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Changes In Blood Pressure
Your hormones play a major role in heart health, primarily due to one of your bodys largest hormone-producing glands, the pancreas. The pancreas is responsible for producing insulin, which regulates the amount of glucose in the blood. Without proper regulation of this hormone, your body could end up with too much glucose in the blood, leading to cardiovascular problems like high cholesterol or high blood pressure. High blood pressure, also known as hypertension, has also been linked to thyroid dysfunction, testosterone deficiency, growth hormone excess or deficiency, and more.
You May Need A Prescription Treatment
If youve tried a ton of OTC products and youre still breaking out, its time to call for backup. Your healthcare provider has plenty of prescription acne treatment options that will help get your acne under control.
You dont necessarily have to see a dermatologist, either. Its likely that your family healthcare provider has helped many teenagers with acne. Your regular healthcare provider can refer you to a dermatologist if they think its necessary.
The advantage here is that prescription medications are going to be stronger and they usually work faster. Also, they can work even when OTC products havent.
If your acne is severe, inflamed, or leaving scars, you should skip the OTC products and start with prescription medications right away.
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Some Of The Primary Causes Of Hormonal Imbalance May Include:
- phytoestrogens, naturally-occurring plant estrogens found in soy products
- exposure to toxins, pollutants, and endocrine disrupting chemicals, including pesticides and herbicides
As you can see, there are many factors that can lead to a hormonal imbalance, and a hormonal imbalance can lead to many different health issues, including excess weight gain and bloating. The bloating and weight gain caused by hormonal imbalance is often referred to as hormonal belly. If you are experiencing these symptoms and have seen no changes from diet and exercise, then you may need to focus on your hormonal health and make an effort to restore hormonal balance.
Acne Breakouts Around Mouth: Causes Treatments And More
- Acne occurs when pores become blocked by a buildup of dead cells, oil, dirt and bacteria.
- Acne around the mouth is caused by hormones, frequent touching and cosmetic products.
- This condition can be treated with over the counter or prescription medication, and home remedies.
Acne is a skin condition that develops when dead skin cells, bacteria and sebum , become trapped in the pores of the skin. It appears as whiteheads, blackheads, pustules, nodules and cysts. Acne around the mouth can effectively be treated with a combination of medication and an anti-acne skin care routine.
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Do Hormonal Acne Supplements Work
Normally, over the counter hormonal acne treatment and supplements vary wildly in effectiveness to clear your skin, though much will depend on whether you have mild acne or severe acne.
Many oral acne supplements that have been shown to help with acne to some degree will be vitamin or mineral based including:
- Vitamin B3
- Alpha Hydroxy Acids
- Essential oil
Many products youll find like acne facial washes, chemical peels, shower gels and creams will contain one or more of these ingredients inside.
The problem is that treating acne externally topically, on the skin doesnt fix the root cause of the adult acne, which is often internal. Specifically, hormones .
This is why many sufferers of severe acne symptoms dont find relief from over the counter treatment.
The Functional Medicine Prescription For Hormone Imbalance
Stress Reduction to Eliminate Estrogen Dominance
The vast majority of us have a fairly fast-paced life these days and that can lead to chronic stress. It is difficult to remove the stress, but there are some tried and true methods for helping your body respond differently to it. For example, if you learn to perceive a situation as an opportunity rather than a threat, it can change the chemical response in your body so you are no longer constantly in fight or flight and trying to produce cortisol. For some women, adrenal support supplements can help their body’s hormonal stress response in addition to lifestyle practices. Check out our article on managing Anxiety and Stress for more detailed techniques and supports.
Sleep is also essential to your body handling stress and repairs itself overnight. If you’re struggling with sleep, it is recommended you work with a provider to also address the root cause. It could be that your hormones are causing the sleep disturbance!
Read our article on how to Finally Get Some Rejuvenating Sleep!
Support Your Liver and Gut
- Eat quality protein
- Eat plenty of garlic and onions
- Take a methyl-B complex
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What Hormonal Imbalances Can Cause Belly Fat
- Thyroid: The thyroid gland secretes hormones that control metabolism, a process by which the body consumes energy. When your thyroid doesnt produce enough thyroid hormones , most body processes slow down, which leads to weight gain, especially around the abdomen. According to the American Thyroid Association, weight gain due to hypothyroidism may be caused by a buildup of salt and water as opposed to a buildup of fat.
- Cortisol: Cortisol is released in response to stressful situations. When you are agitated, your body goes into flight-or-fight or survival mode, triggered by the secretion of cortisol by the adrenal gland. Increased cortisol can lead to the accumulation of fat around the abdomen.
- Leptin: Leptin helps you feel full after a meal. However, when leptin levels increase and lead to leptin resistance, this can cause increased food intake and fat accumulation in the abdomen.
- Estrogen:Low testosterone levels may reduce libido and increase abdominal fat in both men and women.
- Testosterone: Low testosterone levels in males decrease growth and increase fat accumulation in the body. Increased testosterone levels in females increase insulin resistance, which leads to the accumulation of abdominal fat.
A Healthy Gut Is A Top Priority
When your gut is unhealthy, you wreak havoc on your body and your digestive system. You dont even feel well, and you wouldnt because an unhealthy gut impacts on hormonal balance. It is so vital to clean up your gut, starting by avoiding processed foods, hydrogenated oils, and added sugars. Eat the foods that restore gut balance. Excellent ones are fermented foods like sauerkraut and kefir, probiotics, bone broth and high-fiber foods.
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Other Hormones That Can Cause Hormonal Imbalance
There are several other hormones too that can get out of balance. One monster hormone, insulin, is what also causes weight gain, chronic disease, and inflammation. It is possible to naturally regulate insulin, so instead of storing fat, you can burn the fat. Other hormones, as listed above, are also responsible for hormonal weight gain. Lets look at more of these hormones:
Youre Eating Clean But Your Tummys Still Expanding
More often than not, belly fat can be traced to your diet. But if your tummys popping despite a steady diet and lifestyle, your weight gain could be hormonal.
Hormone levels can change for a variety of reasons outside your control, including:
- some cancer treatments
- underlying medical probs
Belly weight gain could just mean that your estrogen or testosterone levels are fluctuating because youre getting older. But if you havent changed your lifestyle and you arent approaching middle age, chat with your doctor about checking for underlying health conditions.
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Avoid Hormone Disrupting Chemicals
The first step is to avoid exposure to any and all chemicals that are known hormone disruptors. Avoid using plastics whenever possible, stay away from junk foods that have chemical additives and other toxins in them, and buy organic produce exclusively, as many pesticides used to grow conventional crops contain hormone-disrupting chemicals. Take an honest look at what you consume on a daily basisboth in your mouth and on your skinand eliminate all unnatural products and foods that may contain hormone-disrupting toxins.