The Kind Life is a community around Alicia Silverstone and The Kind Diet where friends, doctors, experts in green living, and members share vegan tips.

Kind Cures

How I Cleared Up My Acne

When I went vegan, I was on the pill, and acne wasn’t really an issue for me. In fact, after only two weeks of being vegan, people were beginning to ask, “What is going on with you? You look amazing!” I was still eating junk food like fries and white pasta, but I’d given up meat and dairy. That alone gave me a vegan glow.

Acne and the Pill

When I went off the pill, my skin broke out. At that time, I was experimenting with a raw diet. I was eating tons of fruits, nuts, and other cool, uncooked delicacies, but I wasn’t feeling great, and I was dealing with really bad cystic acne. I even had to reshoot a scene for a movie because of it.

Acne and Macrobiotics

Simultaneously, my husband got interested in macrobiotics. I went with him to see a macrobiotic counselor in New York – she’s the first person who suggested that trying a macrobiotic diet could clear up my skin. She also pointed out that eating tropical fruits in the middle of winter in NYC was neither good for my body nor eco-friendly. She convinced me to try macrobiotics, which I combined with a vegan diet to create what I now call the superhero diet. That’s what really made my skin turn around. Within just a week of eating superhero, my skin had significantly improved.

Here are five major changes that made the difference:

1. I started eating whole grains at every meal.
2. I had miso soup once a day and cranked up my consumption of vegetables.
3. I chose local and seasonal produce (apples instead of pineapples for example) instead of eating the non-indigenous fruits I’d been eating on the raw diet.
4. I cut out white sugar, white flour and all processed foods. Of course, I continued to avoid all meat and dairy.
5. In general I cut way down on fruits and nuts.

These changes made my cystic acne go away. I was still getting minor breakouts around my period, but nothing like before. Next, I’ll share how a facialist helped me to completely clear up those smaller breakouts.

 

What else would you like to know about diet and acne?
Ask me in the comments below.

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  • Karen Jennings

    I came off the pill a few months ago and have had terrible acne ever since. I have been vegetarian for 17 years, but decided to try being vegan to clear up my acne. I have been following a vegan diet for 6 days now and my skin is practically flawless already!

  • Christie Abbott

    Thank you for this article! I was an actress myself from a very young age to my mid twenties and acne was a huge deciding factor in retiring from acting. It’s unfortunately a difficult disease to fight when people are constantly looking at you and needing you to look “flawless”. I know not many are, but when you have acne you feel like everyone is. My acne became so severe it wasn’t even something I could cover up with make-up. I related to you having to re-shoot a scene. Its an awful feeling. I was shooting a pretty intense scene and my skin had broken out badly that week. Instead of concentrating on doing my best I was in constant fear that all the camera was seeing was my acne. The director had to shoot around it instead of picking the best scenes. It was so upsetting. We had talks about re-shooting, but it wasn’t an option. After thousands of dollars spent on potions, doctor appointments, prescriptions, lasers and giving up acting for awhile I am finally trying juicing and eating nuts, veggies and greens to improve my cystic acne. Its nice to not feel alone in this fight because sometimes you just feel like you don’t even want to leave the house! I’m 31 years old and I never thought I would still be fighting this. Fingers crossed this helps. Your post gives me hope! Thank you!

  • Christie Abbott

    Thank you for this article! I was an actress myself from a very young
    age to my mid twenties and acne was a huge deciding factor retiring from
    acting. It’s unfortunately a difficult disease to fight when people
    are constantly looking at you and needing you to look “flawless”. I
    know know one it, but my acne wasn’t even something I could cover up
    sometimes. I relate to you having to re-shoot a scene. I was shooting a
    pretty intense scene and my skin had broken out badly that week.
    Instead of concentrating on doing my best I was in constant fear that
    all the camera was seeing was my acne. The director had to shoot around
    it instead of picking the best scenes. It was so upsetting. After
    thousands of dollars spent on potions, doctor appointments,
    prescriptions, lasers and giving up acting for awhile I am finally
    trying juicing and eating nuts, veggies and greens to improve my cystic
    acne. Its nice to not feel alone in this fight because sometimes you
    just feel like you don’t even want to leave the house! I’m 31 years old
    and I never thought I would still be fighting this. Fingers crossed
    this helps. Your post gives me hope!

  • MF

    I’m so glad to have read this article. I get horrible cystic acne on my chin during my period. I became a whole foods vegan a few months ago and recently began eating 50% raw. I now have 5-6 massive, painful pimples on my chin. It’s horrible. My diet, despite being whole foods based, seems to be making my skin WORSE. It doesn’t matter how much water I drink, what kind of facial cleansing process I adopt …. nothing helps. I’m nearly in tears. I will follow your example and see how much it helps. Thanks!

    • Denja

      You got more acne because you are detoxifying your body with this healthy diet. Don’t worry, acne in this case is good and means that you are getting rid of build-up toxins through the skin of your face. Keep eating lots of vegetables and fruits, avoid milk-products and gluten.
      p.s i’m from sweden, my english is not so good. but hopefully you understood me