An A-Z Woman's Guide to Vibrant Health

ACNE (Hormonal)

During puberty, peri-menopause and menopause, sebaceous (oil) glands become more active. Pores can become clogged with sebum, dried skin and bacteria, causing skin to erupt into pimples, red blotches and sometimes inflamed and infected abscesses. Acne normally appears on the face, shoulders, scalp, upper arms and legs, upper chest and back. More than 40 percent of teens seek treatment from a specialist for their acne condition.

Hormonal acne break-outs tend to occur during ovulation or the week before menstruation. In those women with hormonally induced acne, when the ovary releases the egg, it often is not able to completely release it. When this occurs, androgens (male hormones) are secreted in excess, and women develop acne around the hair line, chin and chest and back. To correct hormonal acne, many doctors prescribe birth control pills to stop ovulation. (Today we have 12-year-olds on birth control pills to control acne.) Nutritional supplements can normalize ovulation and eliminate the problem at the source. Even mild episodes of acne can lead to scarring, and scars can be both physical and psychological.

There are various types of skin lesions: a papule is a round bump that may be invisible but makes the skin feel rough like sandpaper. A comedo occurs when an oil follicle becomes plugged with oil, dead skin, tiny hairs or bacteria. An open comedo is known as a blackhead, and a closed comedo is commonly referred to as a whitehead. The temporary red or pink spot after an acne lesion has healed is referred to as a macule, and several together contribute to the appearance of inflammation associated with acne. A nodule is another dome-shaped lesion similar to a papule, but it extends deeper into the skin, causing the destruction of tissues that leads to scarring. Nodules can be painful, as can cysts which are filled with liquid, can be severely inflamed and also affect deeper skin layers.

While food choices have been hotly debated as a cause of acne for years, research out of the University of Colorado is confirming that a diet high in refined carbohydrates permanently boosts insulin and thus promotes acne. According to Dr. Loren Cordain, sustained high insulin levels elevate hormone levels, stimulating the production of oil that leads to clogged pores, bacterial growth and acne. High-glycemic foods such as breads, cakes, sugars and soda are major culprits in acne. Although acne is epidemic in our society, it is virtually unknown in New Guinea and the Amazon where diets focus on fruits and vegetables. Those with acne should be conscious of foods that aggravate the condition. Acne is also associated with low stomach acidity, suggesting incomplete food breakdown and imbalances in the digestive tract.

With the shift between male hormones and female hormones during the menstrual cycle, acne lesions change. Synthetic progestins and estrogens used for menopausal symptoms, supplements of DHEA, endometriosis, polycystic ovary syndrome and estrogen dominance have been linked to acne. Other drugs such as corticosteroids, anabolic steroids, iodides and bromides are also known to cause acne, as are cosmetics that block pores.


Multivitamins with minerals; (contains no iron)
As directed; should contain the following nutrients:
  • Vitamin A 2500 IU
  • Beta carotene 15000 IU
  • Folic acid 1 mg
  • P-5-P (vitamin B6) 60 mg
  • Vitamin B3 30 mg, along with other B vitamins
  • Vitamin D 400 IU Promotes healing of skin
  • Vitamin E 200 IU
  • Zinc 15 mg per day. In one study 135 mg of zinc daily was as effective as 750 mg daily tetracycline without side effects.
  • Chromium picolinate 200 mg per day
  • Selenomethionine 100 mcg

Reduces sebum production, promotes smooth, clear skin

Facilitates breaking down of excess hormones

Promotes healing of skin

Acts as an antioxidant and encourages tissue repair

Essential for healthy immune function, promotes healing of skin
Improves glucose tolerance and fatty acid metabolism

To enhance glutathione and fight bacteria
Borage oil
GLA Skin Oil
2000 mg of Borage oil per day
Helps fight acne
Omega-3 Fatty Acids
2 softgels per day containing:
Calamari oil providing 720 mg
of DHA and 280 mg of EPA
Helps heal skin
2 capsules per day containing:
  • 2 capsules per day containing:
  • Indole-3-carbinol 150 mg
  • Sulforaphane 200 mcg
  • Calcium D-glucarate 150 mg
  • Curcumin 50 mg
  • Rosemary 25 mg
  • DIM 50 mg
  • Green tea extract 100 mg
  • Di-indolylmethane (DIM) 50 mg
Balances hormones supports healthy ovulation. Within two menstrual cycles acne will clear and PMS and period problems will ease.
Probiotic Plus
2 capsules daily, containing 5 billion active cells
Improves intestinalflora (especially important if you have taken antibiotics for condition)
eat foods containing garlic
Acts as a natural antibacterial
160-320 mg three times daily with meals, assuming standardized to contain 13-18% caffeoylquinic acids calculated as chlorogenic acid
Increases bile formation and flow to digest and absorb fats
Dandelion Root
Dandelion tea as a beverage
Detoxifies the liver
Digestive enzymes
1 or 2 capsules with meals
Aids digestion

  • Within two menstrual cycles Estrosmart will normailize hormones and promote clear skin.
  • Wash gently with warm water and an irritant-free cleanser. Avoid scrubbing, which can stimulate sebum production. Do not use make-up that will clog pores.
  • Do not pick at acne, as this can lead to infection.
  • If you have gas, bloating, indigestion or constipation, you have low stomach acid. Add a supplement with betaine hydrochloride or digestive enzymes to improve digestion.
  • Avoid the use of antibiotics which can cause Candida yeast overgrowth and vaginal infections that will worsen acne symptoms in the long term and may have little effect on the acne.
  • Focus on a diet rich in fruits and vegetables along with 25 g of fiber daily to help naturally eliminate estrogen. Avoid foods that you know aggravate the condition.
  • Treat constipation. Holding days of toxic waste increases the amount of toxins excreted by the skin. See Constipation.
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