Raw foods and acne

I have been doing the raw foods diet for about 4 months now and have noticed a decrease in my acne.

Has anyone else had any success on a raw foods diet?


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19 thoughts on “Raw foods and acne

  1. Can you give us more details on that raw food diet? i dont understand well what it consist of thanks. Is that like veggis and such?

  2. Yeah, I eat primarily whole and ripe fruits and veggies, with green juice daily, too. I have noticed my health improve in so many ways from this style of eating, better skin being one of them.

    I am surprised that there doesn’t really seem to be anyone with much experience with this (at least, there hasn’t been any replies along those lines!). 🙂

    I was wondering though if many people have found oranges to aggravate their acne. Anyone?


  3. I have never tried it, though I’ve read a lot about it. I read about it for acne too. One explanation may be that you are getting more vitamins/minerals that cooking/heat has not destroyed. What do you eat concerning meat?

  4. Hey WallyEJones,

    Yes, that is a very viable explanation. Also, I am eliminating everything but pure food. I am 26 now and have been dealing with this since I was 12. It’s nice to have some relief!

    In answer to your question, I don’t eat any meat. I eat only fresh fruits and veggies. I am considering adding egg yolks or sashimi in the future, but not just yet.


  5. you must eat nuts then or some form of protein..if not you ultimately would suffer from a lack of protein which also can be damaging to your health.

  6. tdc, thank you for you concern. I forgot to mention that I do eat some sprouted legumes. Also, I have found that nuts make me break out, so that is not an option! 🙁 Isn’t this the case for others here as well? Believe me, if they didn’t make me break out, I’d be all over them!

    Actually, greens are 30-50% protein. I eat a lot of them!

    Though like I said, I am thinking of adding a raw animal protein (eggs or sashimi) in the future.


  7. Yeah, I eat primarily whole and ripe fruits and veggies, with green juice daily, too.

    I am very curious. When you say *primarily*, what specifically do you mean?? To help answer the question, do you mean that you also eat other items in addition to fruits and vegetables?? What are those items?? Also, what green juice do you refer to???

    Veggies can provide some protein but they are not complete proteins. To get complete proteins you must eat from several sources, such as a combination of grains, legumes and nuts/seeds. Then you would get complete protein…of course you could eat animal products to get the complete proteins.

    A fruit and veggie diet is one of the most difficult to stay on and be able to obtain all the nutrients necessary for optimum health. Do you take any supplements?? If so, which ones?? I am so curious. It is extremely rare to find anyone who eats primarily just fruits and veggies.

  8. Okay, I meant that I eat *only* fruits and veggies, with some sprouted legumes. Everyday I make a juice with celery, carrot, and chard.

    I don’t eat grains, and I don’t believe that the body needs them, especially since my body is allergic to most grains! Raw vegans deal with this protein debate constantly. If you want to inquire more about it, you can also go to http://www.vegsource.com/talk/raw/index.html.

    The only supplements I take are a probiotic nightly. That’s it.

    I have done tons of research, and my naturopath is well aware of my diet and helping me supervise it.

    Has no one noticed that their skin has improved from increasing the amount of raw foods in their diet?

    Does anyone else experience breakouts when they eat nuts and seeds? Are there any nuts or seeds that *don’t* make those of you break out? I was thinking of eating flax seeds.


  9. Shawna, I am a big raw foods advocate but don’t agree with your approach. I mono diet from time to time (eat raw foods ONLY) and juice.

    I think the least you could do would be to add some rice and beans and bean soups. That way, you could get more protein. If you aren’t consuming fish oil, your hair might start falling out. I’ve talked to plenty of vegans who had to switch back to eating animal proteins because they were malnourished.

    Most balanced nutritionists believe that having about 50-75% raw foods daily along with other proteins that include raw seeds, nuts and nut butters, and beans is about the best diet you could ever have. I know you can’t tolerate nuts, but after 4 months, if you consume them with digestive enzymes, they shouldn’t break you out at all. Besides that, it’s just too much darn work to fit your lifestyle around eating that way, especially if you are married with a family.

    Everyone, the reason why raw foods and juicing is very good for you varies from person to person but needless to say, it’s great for acne. Proteins and simple sugars are what aggravate most acne sufferers. Very simply put, when you eliminate them from your diet, then you don’t break out. Plus, if you are juicing, you are adding many live enzymes to your diet and your whole system works better. Acne flourishes in a body that has a very acidic ph balance. Juicing and raw foods helps bring the body back into a alkaline state.

    I’ve juiced for years and am about to go on a major detox for a couple of weeks and I’ll be doing lots of juicing and eating raw veggies. I’m a big advocate of it, but only for brief periods of time, though I do mostly juice everyday anyway.

  10. Thanks, Denise. It is nice to hear that you have some experience with raw foods.

    I plan on adding some bean soups in the winter. I actually just saw my naturopath the other day and we set out a little plan. Why do you say that my hair will fall out without fish oils? Are you referring to the need for EFAs? If so, I would prefer to take them in via some other form, such as flax seeds and such. Though, I would still appreciate a little input from you all about whether or not flax seeds promote breakouts!

    I have adjusted to living with this lifestyle. I have a husband with no kids, and my husband is supportive.

    Denise, have you managed to get rid of most of your acne? What is your diet/regimine?


  11. hello, thanks for the input.

    What do you mean when you say “juicing?” This is sometimes a phrase used as slang for being inebriated. Haha, I know thats not what you mean, I suspect you mean juicing fruits or veggies to drink, yes? So okay, what do you use to do that? Can a regular blender work or do you need some fancy gizmo??

    I have been eating raw foods pretty regularly over the past 4-5 months, yet I also eat many other items too, like some grains (rice, oats), legumes, dairy products like cheese and sour cream (moderate) and also meat (fish mostly, moderate). I try to eat a lot of fruit like bananas, peaches, pears, apples, oranges and raisins. For veggies I do a lot, like spinach, celery, carrot, onion, mushroom, lettuce (varieties), peppers, sprouts, etc. Salads have become a staple of my diet. I also like orange juice or lemonade, soy milk, almonds (no problem for me), sunflower seeds, most all beans, corn and some potatos (rarely).

    Okay so I can make some green drink? How do I make that? I used to work with a guy who made this celerey/carrot drink you speak of. I always thought it sounded gross. 😕 But now I would like to try it. So far my diet changes have been beneficial for me! But I got further to go and maybe more raw foods will help! BTW, I have used milled flax seed in my food, including drinks and it tastes good! You might like it Shawna.

    Russell 🙂

  12. Shawna: I’ve talked to a few vegans whose hair fell out due to malnourishment. I take Udo’s Choice oil and I have taken EFA’s before it became fashionable….about 12 years. However, I kept hearing from Dr. Barry Sears of The Zone Diet that fish oil is much better assimilated by the body. I heard that from many other sources as well. I added fish oil into my diet and I believe that it IS much better and assimilated by the body better. I still take Udo’s oil, because it has all 3 EFA’s, and they assimilate better if taken together, and his oil has other great things as well. But if the truth be known, fish oil seems to be better for acne, and that has been my experience as well.

    As for my regime, the most important aspect of keeping clear for me is taking supplements that support my liver. Currently I’m on a detox/liver cleanse so what I’m doing now doesn’t really reflect how I normally live or eat. But I try to juice everyday except I skip Sundays sometimes. I do want to try to get to the point that my leaky gut syndrome is totally dealt with and healed once and for all. That’s one reason I’m doing this detox.

    I try to use the most natural things on my face; no preservatives or chemicals and whatnot. I find this helpful as well. There are other threads that deal with many good topicals. I kinda turned everyone on to the manuka oil and honey gel and manuka oil as it is stronger than tea tree oil and really is very good. I use Retin A everynight along with copper peptides.

    Nevertheless, I’m still very concerned about the lack of complete proteins in your diet. No offense to your naturopath, but I find it strange that he/she is keeping you on this kind of plan. Adding bean soups in the winter? That is way too far away. It almost sounds like you are frightened to have something in your diet that might break you out. Again…..after all this time, food allergies and sensitivities shouldn’t be a problem if you add digestive enzymes. What you are doing isn’t healthy. Sprouts for protein is way too inadequate. You could easily be eating beans, nut butters (are you sure you are allergic to ALL NUTS?), and beans and rice. I’m very afraid that you are harming yourself. Even indiginous people groups all over the world who have no acne at all eat plenty of fresh fish and protein along with fresh fruits and veggies. At the very least you could consume a protein powder in almond/rice/soy milk. There are many protein powders that are dairy free. I even have one that is soy free as well.

    Having a diet high in raw fruits and veggies is very good for the body and skin. But to do ONLY raw fruits and veggies and sprouts for anything longer than one month isn’t healthy imho.

  13. Russell,

    By ‘juicing’, I mean I put the foods through a juicer. A juicer is different than a blender, which blends all of the foods together. I have a Champion juicer, which I would definitely recommend, though it is on the pricey side! I have really noticed some benefits from drinking my chard/celery/carrot/apple juice everyday.

    Thanks for mentioning the flax seeds! I may just try to add them to a smoothie or something.


  14. Hi Denise,

    Thanks for your input on the benefits of fish oil. Still, I doubt I will go that route. I did it for over a year, so I do have some experience with finding sources of EFAs.

    I don’t understand, though. You say that you use the most natural things on your face, but Retin-A is part of your regimine? I found Retin-A to be far too harsh on my face when I used it. These days I am using these wonderful homeopathic products. I have found so many other products to be over-drying, but these are not.

    FYI, there are many different opinions in the medical field regarding healthy proteins, how they are acquired, how much is needed, etc. Not everyone is in agreement, though I understand your intentions. I don’t mind dietary suggestions, but for you to tell someone what is and is not healthy for them without any detailed knowledge about their daily intake, background, and personal health is going a bit too far, I feel.


  15. Shawna, ofcourse I don’t know you or your background. I’m speaking in general terms. I understand all of the debate about how proteins are assimilated by the body and all of that. I’m just stating what I have seen over the years of studying this stuff for myself and trying to see what works to keep my own skin clear as well.

    If you think this is working for you, that’s all fine and good. But I don’t think that there are many people on this board who believe that what you are doing is healthy. How many sprouts are consuming on a daily basis? A pound, a half pound? Knowing what I know, it seems that there is a fat chance of consuming enough sprouts to adequately make up for a lack of protein. There are many vital nutrients that are lacking in your diet.

    Having a lot of live enzymes in your diet is important; it’s hard for acne to thrive in an alkaline body. I get that. But there isn’t any good reason to not consume beans, rice and beans, or protein powder along with some kind of green powder in almond milk. These are all things that you could easily consume with no problem.

    Sorry, but I just disagree with you that what you are doing is adequate to nourish your body fully. That’s not a condemnation or anything. I wouldn’t even say it’s bad to do for a month or so. I’ve done 21 day fasts and detoxes so I understand the process. I just don’t think it’s safe to do beyond a month or so.

    I’m glad that you are satisified and happy with your results.

    As for me using Retin A, ofcourse I use Retin A. I have very tough skin and can even wash my face and put Retin A immediately after washing. I also do peels every 3-4 weeks. My skin is very tough and these things help with keeping it clear. Because of free radical damage done to me due to leaky gut syndrome, I need to be on Retin A to reverse some of that damage, as well as help control acne.

    Again, I think that if this works for you, that is great. I just believe that most people would agree that it seems that your protein intake is adequate, and there’s really no good reason to not consume other sources of protein as well. It just doesn’t seem balanced. If you disagree, that’s fine with me. 😀

  16. Shawna: I’ve talked to a few vegans whose hair fell out due to malnourishment.

    I was also wondering about why my hair has become more diffuse all over. The low protein diet I’ve been on for years just doesn’t work for me. Acne is bad enough but to endure hair loss is beyond what I can accept. Ive also read that more protein in diets can help to reduce 5 alpha reductase enzymatic activity thus reducing acne.

    But I’ve found that lean proteins particularly fish works better for me.

  17. Christian…that’s exactly what the vegans I talked said they did. They added fish into their diet and it stopped the hair loss.

    I used to eat mainly vegetarian but not totally. I find that now since I’ve added more protein, I feel better and my acne is more easy to control, also.

  18. For a couple of weeks I have been thinking of modifying my diet. I am pretty sure now that as soon I as get this one book to use as a guideline, I am going to try an anti-candida diet (a raw one). This would involve eating no sweet fruits for a period of time, and just focusing on greens, veggies, and raw fats and proteins (nuts, young coconuts, seeds, avocados, more sprouted beans, maybe some oils, and some other stuff too).

    I am a little nervous about adding some of these fats in, especially since I have heard from people that fats make them break out more. It seems like many of you do fine with fats in your diet, am I right?

  19. Shawna..I believe that studies show that hydrogenated and partically hydrogenated oils are the ones that seem to cause breakouts. The beneficial oils like flax, evening primrose, and fish oils, are very, very, very good and even ESSENTIAL to healthy skin.

    Did you know that they started researching fish oil when they found literally no heart disease amongst eskimos, who had diets very high in animal fat? Ofcourse the trick is that they ate cold water fish and mammals, whose fats have anti-inflammatory properties.

    See, the anti-inflammatory properties in fish oil particularly but also all EFA’s, are what help acne. Acne is an inflammatory skin disease. Dr. Perricone also writes about aging and how inflammation is the prime cause of aging and wrinkles. It’s funny because when you look at people like Jack LaLanne, who is well into his eighties…..he doesn’t have any wrinkles! His skin is smooth as silk, though he has lost muscle tone. He eats a lot of raw and a low inflammation diet.

    Fish oil has been used to treat depression and ADHD also, as it acts as an anti-inflammatory in the brain as well, much more so than flax.

    These anti-inflammatory properties are very good for acne.

    I hope that helps and I hope that you didn’t think we were trying to come down on you. I totally agree with you that eating mostly raw even, is very good for controlling acne. As I said, I try to juice everyday. I think that what you are doing is excellent….just not complete.

    Take care. You can always do a google search on the benefits of fish oil and other oils. That could help you as well.

    Take care and happy healing. 😀

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