So it has been two weeks since I started my leaky gut fix diet. Now I know 2 weeks is not enough time to make a fully informed judgement, but this week I've had a bit of a tough week and one interesting observation has emerged.
I started all this because it became obvious that dairy was having an effect on my skin. I surmised at the time that this is likely to be because of the presence of IGF-1, which is designed to grow a cow (or a baby, it is present in all mammal milk). Given that I am no longer in need of help growing, it would be reasonable to assume that I have a natural sensitivity to IGF-1, which is leading to excessive spikes in insulin, causing the formation of cystic acne.
This may well be caused by leaky gut. Or I may just have a higher than average baseline insulin level - to find that out, I'm going to need to get my butt to the Doctor and get some blood tests done.
So I've been following the leaky gut protocol for 2 weeks now, which to recap, means no dairy, sugar, alcohol, gluten, corn, soy/legumes, or eggs. I've also been avoiding coffee, as apparently it can produce a similar response to gluten in allergenic people, so for the purpose of this detox it is best avoided. I've also been taking all the recommended supplements of a probiotic and L-glutamine on top of my regular supplement regime of high strength fish oil, silica/zinc/biotin, EPO and magnesium/calcium/D3.
It took a little over a week but hallelujah, on Monday this week I woke up and my skin was a million times better. No 'active' spots in the chin/jaw area! First time in as long time. Still plenty of scarring to work with, and a couple of PMS spots on my cheekbones that will disappear fairly quickly, but all the horrible sore spots on my jaw and neck were gone!
Until this morning. I have been wracking my brains to work out what I have done differently this week to last, and I finally figured it out. Rice and potatoes, or to be precise, high GI starches.
Tuesday night I went to the Paradise Lost/Lacuna Coil gig, and didn't have time to cook, so I had a Thai curry with rice. Then Wednesday I didn't have any lunch with me, and this diet can be tricky to cater for where I work, so when a colleague suggested ordering in from the sushi place, I went with Udon noodles (fat rice noodles). Thursday I had potatoes for lunch, quite a large portion.
So I am thinking there might be some insulin involvement in all this. It would make sense - although there isn't a long term history of diabetes going back generations in my family, there is some propensity to hormone related issues (thyroid and diabetes).
I'm going to stick with the leaky gut diet until the end of the month, further eliminating rice and white potatoes (thank goodness it is squash season here!) and then I will start to reintroduce the foods on the original list that I am unsure about (dairy and sugar are off the menu for sure, including all forms of pure sugar like dextrose because of the insulin response). So alcohol, eggs, corn (which is low GI), some glutens (like oats, whole grain pasta cooked al dente and occasional bread made with minimal white flour), and beans will come back in one at a time.
Life feels very complicated at the moment, what with the diet, and changing jobs, and on top of it all my blood pressure feels pretty low. I don't like going to the Dr, I guess sub consciously my years of medical treatment for chronic ENT problems as a child, to the point that I became antibiotic resistant and Drs pretty much said "we can't help, just ride it out", makes me somewhat suspicious of the medical profession. Luckily I'm generally very healthy, and and for some reason I have no qualms about gynaecologists so I am always up to date with my woman's health checks. I guess I just feel like I won't be taken seriously, because for some reason I don't feel like this should be something that requires medical intervention. I think my aunt would tell me that is a sign of how I feel about myself and my worth, but I think it's just because I feel like its a vanity issue... never mind the pain acne actually causes me!
Anyway, enough rambling from me. I will get myself to the Doctors when things calm down enough for me to make time for it (I had 3 medical appointments to sort, I managed my contact lens one, so 2 more to go) for some blood tests and what not, oil change etc.
If you have any experiences with leaky gut, insulin triggered acne, or anything else I've discussed here, feel free to leave a comment below!