In a nutshell my typically dry skin one day went a-wall and turned into horrific and painful red skin. It also was extremely itchy, feeling identical to having poison ivy. The diagnosis? According to the doctor and allergy testing I have contact dermatitis. So I am touching something that is triggering my eczema. What I am touching? Who knows.
Realizing I was the best advocate for myself I decided to do some major research on what could be the possible problem and look for the best solution.
I am still deep in the process of figuring out all that is going on with my health issues, but I have narrowed down a few things to help.
The first thing I did as soon as I saw my skin flair up was cut out ALL wheat, dairy, and sugar products. I tried to remove any trigger food that could be causing my irritation. Believe me, I am obsessed with bread, so this was not easy for me however the pain I was in, outweighed my desire to eat.
I also tried to switch as many of my products out for organic or all natural. The scary thing is that in almost EVERYTHING we eat or use on our body has some type of chemical/preservative/artificial ingredient in it. It’s scary. No wonder so many loved ones have cancer and illnesses.
As I was researching I learned that our liver processes everything. Like EVERYTHING. Our skin is also our largest organ, so when our liver is having issues and can no longer work it sends out a signal saying it needs help. For so long I was so mad that my skin was reacting this way, however it is a GOOD thing my skin is responding because it is notifying me that my liver needs help. If I ignore that cry, then greater issues could arise down the road.
Quickly I realized I needed to do a major detox and rid my body of all the toxic junk that was backed up. This encouraged me to go on a more plant-based lifestyle. Everyone will always ask me, “if you are not eating certain foods, what ARE you eating?”
Short answer? Super healthy. Along with eating healthy I have been juicing as well. Every morning I have been drinking 16 oz of celery juice. Celery juice has so many amazing benefits (take a few minutes and research it). I don’t mind the taste, to me it tastes exactly like celery. I started off with 8 oz and worked my way up. I also have been juicing carrots since they are high in Vitamin A and will throw in some apples and cucumbers.
For breakfasts I will make smoothies. I have been buying all organic fruit as much as possible. Look up “clean and dirty list” of fruits and veggies. I buy organic depending on that list. I typically add strawberries, bananas, fresh cut pineapple, chia seeds and will pack in a much spinach as I can. With all the other fruit I do not even taste the spinach, neither do my kids. It’s a win!
For lunch and dinner I am kind of all over the place, I still am very much trying to navigate what I can eat but as of now I will have lots of avocado, almond butter (I buy the sugar and salt free option), organic grass fed chicken and beef, salmon, beans, fruits, veggies, salad. I stay away from anything that has been prepackaged. If it comes in a box, tub, or container I stay away from it. Think whole and from the ground. Pinterest is a life saver with coming up with food ideas. I am not creative, so I have to go there.
Let’s be honest, I still want my pizza and restaurant food all the time. I loveeeee food and I die a little every day when I cannot just go and order a sub. Dramatic? Sure, but it tells you how much I struggle with wanting to eat other foods still. It is a major choice that no one can make but you. I was in such horrible pain I knew for me personally I needed to change everthing for the best and quickest results. This was all achieved by diet! I did not put a single cream on my face nor did I take an pill internally. This has spoken volumes to me in how to I move forward with my lifestyle.
So what has changed? Ok I am going to give you all TMI, but I think you will be thankful. I hope! HAHA
1.) My skin has changed drastically! Yes, it is still red off and on and is still itchy, but my pores have shrunk, my skin feels so smooth, and I have no acne. Like at all, no little bumps, nothing! That has been the most amazing thing to see is how clean my skin looks now. I wish I would have changed my diet years ago.
2.) I am not bloated, no bad bowel movement, no gas at all, no cramps after eating food. My stomach after eating still feels thin. Do you ever eat and then afterwards feel like you gained 10 pounds? When you eat clean, that doesn’t happen. I would be bloated all the time. Again, wish I would have done this years ago when I “thought” I was healthy.
3.) I do not get a mid-day slump or brain fog. I used to struggle to think properly half way through the day. I thought it was just because I was busy taking care of the kids, but it most defiantly has been my diet. I have no need for coffee. Do I still get tired? Sure! But not so bad that I need caffeine to fuel me.
4.) I have lost weight! I had about 10 pounds of leftover baby fat hanging on me that did not want to budge. So, without working out, only changing up my diet I was able to shed that excess (call it what it was) fat. Feels so good to be weighing less than what I did before I got pregnant with Judah.
The other major game changer for me was what face products I was using. I have been using Avene products for almost 3 years and I love them and cannot say enough good things about them. They have natural spring water in their products and are made for people with super sensitive skin. I have been applying SO,SO much lotion to my face these past 8 weeks and it has not clogged my pores one bit! I highly recommend two products if you are suffering with any skin issues. I will link them below. They are worth every penny and more. I have tried pretty much every brand of lotion, people have given me so many all natural products and nothing does the trick like Avene products.