Sore Face, Pimple Face, Cysts below the skin Face, Blackhead Face…

“Pleeeeasssse tell me if the Pill will clear up my skin?” is the questioned asked of nutritionist, Michele Chevalley Hedge from A Healthy View, several times a week. And it’s not just by teenagers, but many adults these days too.

“Before I share you the answer to your question, kindly tell me what happens if you only covered a wart with a band aid for three months. Is the wart still there when you take the band-aid off? Of course the wart will still be there.  Yes the Pill will clear up acne, but like the band aid, once you go off the Pill if you haven’t addressed the factors that lead to the pimples.. Guess what… pimples and acne will be back!”

Many factors affect our skin from food sensitivities, immune function, intestinal bacteria, stress hormones, sex hormones, and insulin.  Insulin is particular a culprit these days of driving bad skin due to  it stimulating rapid sebum production.   That is why being aware of hidden sugars (which affect our insulin) in our diets is so important for us, not just for our blood sugar stability, brain function, and mood but the health of their skin.

How does the Pill override all the factors that drive pimples?  The synthetic oestrogens dry up sebum so it will create an artificial situation in the body while you are on the Pill.  There is some research that actually indicates that the Pill will drive insulin resistance.

“I am a modern day nutritionist”, says Chevalley. “I really understand how self-esteem gets hammered with poor skin health so I completely get it that people are desperate to go on the Pill to find a cure for their inflamed skin. What I am trying to get teenagers and adult acne sufferers to realise is that yes, you can put a “patch” on , like the Pill, but if you haven’t addressed the underlying issues,  when you come off the Pill the problem is still there.  It would be the same for those who use Roaccutane. Roaccutane can have very impressive results, whist taking the medication, but the side effects are numerous and widespread.”[1]

Medical Review confirms that diet affects skin

According to a review of 27 medical studies, diet does play a big role in acne.  The foods really aggravating this condition tends to be sugar, milk, and flour. [2]   It is the casein in cow’s milk that may, for some people, cause hormonal and immune imbalances.  Some people may also find a flare up from oranges and orange juice.

Stress is bad for acne

Stress is also linked to acne.  Stanford University did a study in 2003 and linked stress with  outbreaks of acne. [3]  Cortisol and DHEA, our stress hormones, are believed to be the cause of acne.  Cortisol and DHEA are interrelated  to oestrogen and testosterone, hence when one is out often the other is out of balance too.

One of the best ways to reduce stress is through healthy eating, sleeping eight hours per night, and simply walking in the sunshine.

“People get perplexed when I say eating poorly increases your stress so I need to explain that high sugar diets put stress on the liver and leads to hormonal imbalances, sugar cravings, insulin issues and  moods swing.  Whether it is physical stress or a mental or emotional stress, it is still a stress on the body.”

Nutritional supplements for acne

“As a nutritionist helping someone with acne, I look at balancing their blood sugar, eating a nutrient- dense diet  and  in particular increasing nutrients that are proven to improve the skins appearance.  Things like seeds and nuts which are high in zinc.  Zinc is like an a natural antibiotic.  And look for whole grains which are rich in B vitamins, particularly vitamin B5 which reduces sebum production.  Probiotic foods or a quality probiotic supplement is also very good at normalising gut flora, which is key in skin improvement.  And let us not forget the Kate Middleton of vitamins, Vitamin D!  Everyone loves Vitamin D and for good reason.  When we are referring to clear skin, vitamin D and its hormone balance properties are key.”

 So have a good look at what is beneath the surface when you are the path to fresh faces and clear skin.

Michele Chevalley Hedge, one of Sydney’s leading expert nutritionist for teenagers,  runs A Healthy View , a nutritional consultation business based in Sydney.  Michele sees patients, writes for publications, speakers on radio programs and to  schools and corporates and runs educational cleanse retreats throughout the year.  Michele has an upcoming Mother & Daughter Retreat with a focus on nutrition and yoga.  See www.ahealthyview.com for information and Nutrition for children YouTube clip on the website.




[1] http://www.acne.org/accutane-side-effects.html
[2] Ferdowsian HR et al. Does diet really affect acne? Skin Therapy Lett. 2010 Mar;15(3):1-2, 5.
[3] Chiu Annie et al. The Response of Skin Disease to Stress: Changes in the Severity of Acne Vulgaris as Affected by Examination Stress. Archives of Dermatology.2003. 139 (7): 7
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  • If only a dr would actually do something about my hormonal imbalances that lead to my acne… I think it will rain cats & dogs before that though…


  • Did nothing for my acne. Shocking zits from age 12. Only 2 courses, one at age 18 the other at age 45, cleared my acne up. And then not completely, 51 and I still get regular zits


  • I am inclined to get pimples when I am hghly stressed.


  • The pill made no difference to my acne. Roaccutane cleared it up, twice, but the spots are slowly returning


  • A really interesting article! Thank for this read!


  • Yes its stress zits for me


  • Thanks for sharing this informative and interesting article; a lot of good information to digest.


  • i know my acne is definitely caused by my sugar intake lately :(


  • try and see what works for you


  • Im not too bad on the pill its good


  • Being protected is very important for teenagers that are sexually active communities is the key and being able to see what is going on


  • I tend to break out during stressful times.


  • My husband loves to pick, I don’t!


  • stress is bad for achne, that is probably why I can never get rid of em


  • Always hate pimples and especially getting them in the worst places at the wrong times


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