Episode 069: Clear Skin from Within
“I have cystic acne but my skin is super dry too.”
“Most of the time my skin is okay but I have breakouts around my cycle. I know its hormonal.”
“I have keratosis pilaris on my arms which is why I always wear long sleeves. I really want to be able to wear t-shirts and tank tops this summer.”
“I have eczema / psoriasis / rosacea, and none of the products I’ve tried has helped.
These are the kinds of things so many people have come to for looking for help with.
So in this episode, we tackle:
The two types of skin problems we struggle with
How even the best, safest products are only the first step in trying to address chronic skin problems
How to take a functional approach toward resolving skin issues
Listen to the Episode:
Click Here to Read the Episode Transcript...
Hello and welcome back to The Live FAB Life Podcast! I’m your host, Naomi Nakamura.
Today’s show kicks off a mini-sode, a mini-series of episodes, on something that every single person I know wants, regardless of their age, gender, status, really everyone.
It’s something that I know YOU want and it’s something that I began struggling with when I was just 10 years old. And over the years, I’ve spent hundreds, if not thousands of dollars trying to get…
Any ideas on what it may be?
Clear skin! Skin free of blemishes, zits, breakouts, redness, skin that’s moisturized and hydrated, without dark circles or fine lines.
If you’re like me and the millions of people who struggle with breakouts, acne, even psoriasis, eczema, rosacea, and more and all you want is to have healthy, beautiful skin, then this episode and the next few episodes are for you!
Now like I said, I was just ten years old, just entering puberty, when I started to get breakouts. It started with a few zits on my forehead and as I got older, it got progressively and embarrassingly worse, and it stayed with me well past my teenage years into adulthood.
These breakouts and flare-ups always seemed to happen during the most inopportune, important, and probably the most stressful times in my life. Like, right before a job interview or when I was having photos taken or an event that was important to me.
I mean, am I right? Every single time you have something important coming up, somehow, as if a cue for our skin breaks out.
It’s horrifying, demoralizing and it is such a bummer.
I bet you’ve spent years, perhaps most of your life, dealing with this and searching for the ONE thing that could fix it.
Now looking back, I’m sure I spent thousands of dollars on over-the-counter products like Stridex, Clearsil, Oxy-5, and prescription that doctors promised to help like Eurythromycin, Retin-A, Tetracycline and birth control pills like Ortho Tri-Cyclen and they didn’t which is why I had to try so many different things.
And since they didn’t work, I also had to use the heaviest cosmetics like MAC’s Studio Fix, to try and cover it all up.
You know what it’s like going from one product to another, all with the promise to clear up your skin, and they might have, for a little bit, but the problems never completely were resolved and they always seem to come back. And sometimes, worse than before - with crazy, flaky dry, burning skin and sometimes issues in other aspects of your health, beyond your skin.
And that’s what happened to me. I had no idea of the kind of damage that taking medications like antibiotics and birth control pills for almost 30 years would do to my health. Nor did I realize that the topical stuff that I was putting on my face might actually be making my skin worse.
Because what I didn’t understand at that time was that how your skin appears externally is a direct reflection of what’s going on internally - inside of your body.
Now, I’ve been a safer beauty advocate and Beautycounter consultant for almost three years now.
And some of the things I’ve discussed with people are things like:
I have cystic acne but my skin is super dry too. Most of the time my skin is okay but I have breakouts around my cycle. I know its hormonal - do you have something for this? I have keratosis pilaris on my arms which is why I always wear long sleeves. I really want to be able to wear tank tops this summer - do you have something for this? I have eczema, or psoriasis, or rosacea, and none of the products I’ve tried has helped. Do you have something that can help me with this?
These are the kinds of questions that I’ve heard over and over and over again.
And for years, I asked the same questions.
I used to turn to magazines to look for the answers to my complexion problems - from Teen and Seventeen magazines to Shape, In Style, Cosmo when I got older.
And they would always have recommendations for the latest trendy products to try and I spent hours and hours at different cosmetics counters sampling, asking questions, trying products that I had read about in these magazines that ultimately didn’t work for the long-term.
And now I know why.
What I’ve come to learn through my years of training in the functional nutrition world is that using all the products will NOT permanently resolve these kinds of chronic problems.
Now before I go on, I want to clarify something here. I believe there are two types of skin problems:
Chronic problems that linger for years like cystic acne and deeper rooted conditions like keratosis pilaris, eczema, rosacea or even autoimmune problems like psoriasis - which is an autoimmune disease.
But there are also skin problems that can be seasonal - like dry skin in the winter.
I believe that using safer beauty and personal care products that are free of harmful ingredients CAN help these with both kinds of skin issues to a degree, especially the ones caused by seasonal weather changes or external factors.
And this is because conventional products tend contain harmful ingredients like fragrances, phthalates, sulfates, parabens - all things that disrupt our endocrine system and could be making the problems even worse.
So switching to safer brands can help, but for more deeply rooted, chronic skin problems, it’s only just a start. It’s just one piece of the puzzle because even the safest, highest-performing products won’t address WHY these problems are happening.
What’s at the root of them?
What’s going on internally, that’s causing these things to show up externally.
And this is the approach, a Functional Nutrition approach, that I take with my clients, to not only make product recommendations and create personalized regimens but also teach them how to incorporate principles of Functional Nutrition.
So switching to safer beauty is just the first step when it comes to beautiful skin from within.
Now some of you might be thinking, “Well I know what the root cause of my skin problems are.”
I mean, it’s commonly known that so much about acne is “hormonal” right?
When we break out around our cycles. When a teen starts to get zits during puberty. How many times have you said, “I have hormonal acne.” I hear this all the time.
But what does that even mean, “its hormonal.”
And more importantly, WHY is it hormonal?
What is it about your hormones that are imbalanced?
How did they become imbalanced?
Why is it happening?
And, what are you doing about it? What are you doing to rebalance your hormones?
Some of you might even know why your hormones are imbalanced because I’m told things like:
“I really need to cut back on sugar.”
“Its all the cheese I’m eating.”
“I’m so stressed out.”
And yet even though women know that these things are causing the problems that’s causing them so much angst, and what they’re seeking solutions to, they haven’t or aren’t willing to take the necessary actions to resolve them.
They keep looking for product after product, but a product can only help so much.
And I believe that some of this resistance is rooted (because I’m always looking for the root cause in everything) is not understanding how everything is connected, meaning, how are things like eating sugar and gluten and dairy or other foods that your body might be sensitive to, how stress or even the medications and products that you’ve been using to clear up your skin - how are these things causing hormonal imbalances and possibly making your symptoms worse or even unknowingly causing other health issues.
I believe you have a deeper understanding of the cause and effect of these things and how they indeed are connected, then you may be more open and amenable and committed to making the necessary changes to alleviate the problems that you’re seeking solutions.
I know this was the case for me.
I had painful treatments like peels and extractions, went through all of the skincare products, I saw numerous estheticians, changed all of my makeup and even had a special pillow.
I took antibiotics (15 years), birth control pills (10 years) and topical prescription (Benzac, Benzoyl Peroxide, Retin-A and Tetracycline) and over-the-counter (Oxy-5, Stridex, Clearsil, Clean and Clear, Neutrogena) products. Essentially, I’ve tried everyone at one point or another.
When I exhausted all of these “so-called” solutions, I finally realized that these solutions were never going to permanently fix my problems and I had to dig deeper.
I had to ask myself, “What else is contributing to my acne?”
The more research I did and the more I got into and studied Functional Nutrition, I began to realize that there was something deeper going on and all products in the world that could resolve those deeper problems.
And if I really wanted to resolve them for good, I had to take a different approach and attack the problems at the root. And that meant making dietary and lifestyle changes.
So I set out to figure out what those changes looked like for me - what I personally needed to change and when I did, I finally saw the transformation in my complexion and skin health that I had sought after for decades.
I went from having excessively oily skin with painful, cystic acne on my neck and jawline and pimples all over my forever to…
…not having to use the oil-blotting paper first thing in the morning upon waking
…not having to use heavy makeup to cover up my blemishes and hide my ever-present extra shine
…feeling comfortable being on camera for selfies and Instagram stories
And over the next four episodes, we are doing to dive into exactly how I did this!
But if you don’t want to wait, then I have two free tools that I’ve created just for you.
First, I have a free quiz that you can take that will help you figure out what the root causes of your skin problems are. You can take this quiz over at www.livefablife.com/skinquiz
And then secondly, I have a 30-page free guide called, “Clear Skin from Within” that walks you through how to take a functional nutrition approach to clearing up your skin. And you can find that over at https://www.livefablife.com/clearskinfromwithin
If you’ve been struggling with skin issues for years like I did, and you’re ready to take a functional approach to address them, these two resources are the place to start!
Now I’ll be back next week with another solo episode on common mistakes you’re making with your skincare and why perhaps the products you’re using aren’t working for you.
And don’t forget to check out the show notes for this episode where you’ll find links to all the things I’ve mentioned today, including the two free resources I have for you, as well as a transcript for this episode over at www.livefablife.com/069.
While you’re there, don’t forget to join my email list! When you do, you’ll be the first to be notified when my brand new program, Beautiful Skin for Life, opens - its just a few weeks away!
As always, thank you so much for listening and I’ll see you right back here next week!
Naomi Nakamura is a Functional Nutrition Health Coach. Through her weekly show, The Live FAB Live Podcast, programs, coaching services and safer skincare solutions, she helps people with chronic skin issues clear up their skin by teaching them where food meets physiology and how food, gut health, stress, and toxins are intricately connected to the health and appearance of our skin. Naomi resides in the San Francisco Bay Area and can often be found romping around the city with her puppy girl, Coco Pop!
Connect with Naomi at: Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest