Fighting Acne - The Unconventional Way
Prevention is better than cure.
I have read countless posts on how to treat acne/pimples/cysts. Extremely helpful as they may be, the take home message that I always get is that, prevention is better than cure. (I am very thankful for some of the articles, like Splendicity, and Viva Woman's.)
If in the first place, I don't have a pimple to begin with, then what for would I need a pimple cream, or tea tree oil (lol. I invested in a 100% pure one from Thursday Plantation, and it's left on my shelf collecting dust now.), or honey, or go through painful needle extractions during facial?
So after concluding from some of my observations, I decided that one of the best ways to fight acne, is by the "torturous", maybe time-consuming, but very beneficial way - A Healthy Lifestyle.
Leading a healthy lifestyle is the indirect, frequently overlooked, unconventional way of stopping all that unpleasant zits from popping out all over. And I have many athletic friends who can "prove" it. I am always so envious of the guys' baby smooth face. And even more envious when they say they use nothing but normal soap and/or water to wash their faces.
So how did I go about trying to lead a healthier lifestyle?
In my opinion, I feel that this can be divided into 2 big catergories, that is exercise and diet.
1. DECIDE that you want to lead a healthier lifestyle. (I wouldn't say healthy, just aim for moderate, healthIER lifestyle)
2. Start moving.
I started off with the little exercises that one kind friend devised for me. That includes things like leg bend, calf lift, squats, cruches, and swimming. Very simple, at low intensity, low repetition.
Then I also added in cycling.
Subsequently, I cut out magazine articles and start to follow them. This is very good! Just grab any girly mag, like Seventeen, Cleo, Women's Weekly, sure to see a page of healthy lifestyle.
3. Increase the repetitions and intensities as you go along.
I just increase after around 1 week, then 2, because by instincts, I feel that I am stronger, and can do more times. So this is up to individual to judge for yourself.
4. Stick to whatever movements you are doing for 4-8 weeks to see results.
Then you might like to change, e.g. your aerobic exercise can change from cycling to jogging, swimming, dancing/workout, ball games with friends.
Anyway, by that time, the next issue of magazine would have come out with new ideas, so just keep a lookout.
I don't mean go on a diet, starve yourself. I find it torturous to feel hungry. And I am against being extremely underweight, anorexic, bulimic etc. (My reasons range from being unable to donate blood, lack nutrients/hormones to have baby, bad fatless dry and hairy skin and more.)
Diet simply means change the things and way you eat, not don't eat.
1. Start by replacing one meal.
I chose lunch. Instead of just eating any amount of whatever I want, I choose boiled stuff, soup stuff, vegetarian, such as brown rice.
Also, take in protein from soy, beancurd, eggs, nuts, instead of meat. I don't abstain. Just take less. Cos I believe we should eat from every catergory.
Then for dinner, I also try to cut down on the processed food.
I am aiming to replace my peanut butter bread breakfast with banana, milk and oat by this week. (Here is a fellow beauty blogger's post on banana breakfast.)
2. Be on a calorie deficit
haha, actually this is for losing weight. But oh well, having a smaller waistline is part of beauty right. hehe.
Calorie deficit simply means eat lesser calorie than you use in one day. Normal sedentary lifestyle adult should be around 1500 kcal - 1800 kcal a day.
***It's very important to include the calorie from your drinks!!!
Simply don't take sweet drinks, you should be fine with this part.
3. Take vitamins the right way. Eat fruits, eat dark green leafy vegetables. Kiwi, banana, brocolli, mushrooms, all these are good food.
This is very important. Because it is quite common for people to think that going on a lean diet means cutting everything. You need to cut the bad things, but increase the nutrients. So that's why choosing is important. Choose the nutrients dense stuff.
The following is a simple list I can type off-hand:
Wholegrains/Carbo (oat, barley, brown rice, wholemeal bread)
Good fats (salmon, sardine, mackerel)
Vegetable (brocolli, spinach)
Fruit (kiwi, banana)
Protein (soy bean/milk (lactose free), plain boiled beancurd, eggs, skim milk/cheese/yohurt)
The idea is to cut fats/saturated fats. Protein makes us feel we are full, so we eat lesser. They are also used to build our DNA, bones, everything. Carbohydrates are to make us think we are full. We crave sweet things, and carbo, so if you cut carbo totally, you will just keep thinking you are so, so, so hungry. As for fats, the latest article I read says a normal adult only needs less than 50g a day.
A healthier, prettier, happier you!
Asides from my skincare, I do think that this change in lifestyle has contributed significantly to the fact that I don't need to touch the pimple cream for weeks already.
Not only for the face, but I read that if you suffer from body acne, diet also helps a lot. But I am unable to testify for that, as I only get one or two body acne if my clothes are too tight, and I fail to bathe quickly after sweating (during chalet).
I know, this post is so long. But I sincerely hope it can help someone out there. Signing off here. =) Bye.