I was browsing through the Ask Fran thread in the forum today and came accross this question -
“I am just a little lost with something!!! I just don’t no how to work out if I have hormonal acne or not??”
A year ago if you asked me this question I would have given you a completely different answer. But what I’ve since learned from researching, from talking to people and from my own personal experiences, have all lead to a slightly different answer.
You see, yes - acne is often induced, caused or aggravated by hormones. However (and this is the important bit), out of whack hormones are usually induced by something else. So in actual fact, the root cause of your acne is not hormonal, it’s something that’s making your hormones out of whack.
I have a very recent personal story that explains this perfectly, and it may be a story that’s a little squimish for boys so I apologize in advance!
My last cycle was two weeks late, which doesn’t sound like a big deal but to me it was because it meant I had an intense prolonged bout of premenstural tension (PMT), which included irritability, depression, insomnia, anxiety and an acne breakout among other things. This late cycle or “delayed ovulation” is caused by either stress or a significant change in diet (such as detoxing or losing a lot of weight quickly), and can give women intense drawn out PMT.
Now my whole point of this story is that yes, my crazy PMT hormones did cause an acne breakout, but this delayed ovulation did not come out of nowhere. It’s likely that excess stress in my life OR the series of detoxing and colonics I had were the actual cause of the hormonal imblance. Therefore, you could say that the root cause of my acne breakout was either stress, intense detoxing or a combination of both.
I personally don’t feel that you can ever really blame hormones solely on your acne. This is because out of balance hormones are usually caused by something else. This could be stress, diet, puberty, pregnancy, going on or off the birth control pill, breast feeding or menopause. Hormone imbalances can even be induced by eating toxic foods, especially animal products which can be high in hormone residues.
So when you’re trying to figure out the root cause of your acne, go one level deeper and look at possibly why you think your hormones are contributing to your condition (and let’s face it, hormones are often to blame).
I’ve known for many years now that when I’m happy, stress free, eating well and exercising, my premenstrual symptoms are practically non existent. That right there just tells you how holistically you lifestyle choices and general health and wellbeing can so easily contribute to the delicate balance of your hormones.
Having said all that, it’s more likely for women to experience imbalanced hormones because we have so much more reason to (after pubery). Adult men for example can still commonly experience hormone instability from stress and diet, but for us girls we have the monthly hormonal changes plus the whole pregnancy and menopause thing as well.
So I guess in conclusion, the best thing that you can do for your acne problem when considering a hormone imbalance, is to live as healthy a lifestyle as you possibly can. This means practicing regular relaxation, eating well, exercising and if need be, taking supplements.