Healing acne naturally with nutrition & non-toxic skin care

This post on healing acne naturally was first published in 2010. It has been updated and republished.

This is about my journey from breakout to clarity – about healing acne naturally with nutrition and natural skincare.

This is a summary; the detailed strategies that I used are in the upcoming second edition of my Purely Primal Skincare Guide (get on the list for updates on its release).

The basics: I used whole foods, digestive support, and natural skincare products.

I also used PATIENCE, because when you’re working WITH your body to correct long-term imbalances that have been masked by harsh treatments, you’ve got to give it time.

(During that time, I became a Nutritional Therapy Practitioner specializing in, among other things, skin care and healing.)

It’s a process, but a rewarding one. My skin has been clear now for more than TEN YEARS, after a decade of struggling.

Remember, above all, that my transformation wasn’t just about topical strategies. No amount of oil cleansing can fix a nutritional or digestive issue, and nutritional and digestive issues can set the stage for skin problems of any kind, from hormonal acne to eczema.

The quality and sources of our food – the only fuel we have – and the quality of our digestion determines how well every single bodily process works. Better, smarter skincare? That’s just another way to be kind to your skin.

For me, from around 2002-2008, I struggled with just about everything: hormonal acne, dry, flaky skin, oily skin, blackheads and redness (sometimes all at once).

I took at least four prescriptions, including one oral antibiotic (sorry, gut bacteria), another topical antibiotic, a sulfur-based topical, a benzoyl peroxide topical, and a topical retinoid.

During that time, I also tried everything from Proactiv to Arbonne.

Things were looking pretty good for awhile.

But suddenly, the rebound effect came on in full force.

A few blemishes started to creep back in.

It began near my neck. A few weeks later, a few more. And then something went completely awry.

FYI: because I “came of age” in the “before times” (ie: the pre-smartphone, not everyone puts every available photo of themselves on the internet times), before-and-after photos are scarce. I did have a friend snap a photo of my problem skin with a disposable camera in college, so I could show my dermatologist. Back then, my skin was much worse – but I didn’t think my story would one day be all over the internet. Before-and-afters are a new phenomenon relative to my time on earth, and sorry, but I’m OLD.

Back to my story. Suddenly, my jawline acne had flared up again, and with a vengeance. I couldn’t shake it – it wouldn’t go away. It began to crawl up my cheeks and chin and down my neck.

I tried everything – I even tried using those antibiotics again. I dipped in to my bag of leftover, half-used prescription tricks. No luck.

So I started researching. I’d seen some temporary improvement, of course, when I switched my food from the Standard American Diet (and round upon round of crash dieting) to a real food focused, Paleo-style diet. Paleo had definitely helped my face feel less…angry. 

I felt like I had a glimpse of what might work, but I needed to home in (no, not “hone in”) on what would really create transformation.

At the time, I was furiously researching how food impacts health, in particular “modern diseases” like acne and eczema.

I read anything I could find on diet and acne, acne-free cultures, and how the body uses nutrition to build healthy tissues.

I was floored to realize that despite my dietary changes, I still wasn’t necessarily incorporating the most nutrient-dense foods that contain the vitamins and minerals that help balance hormones and that feed the skin at the cellular level.

I realized that I didn’t just need to eliminate irritating foods. I needed to ramp up my intake of certain vitamins and minerals, as well as support my body in digesting and assimilating them.

With this information, I was on my way.

Here’s a fun little realization I had along the way: many of the prescriptions and products I’d used in my quest for “decent skin through conventional wisdom” were actually based around several derivatives of the nutrients I needed to add to my diet. For example: sulfur, vitamin A, and vitamin D.

I was also taking antibiotics, when what I really needed was to nurture the good bacteria in my gut.

Of course, while there’s nothing wrong with medicine – and I DO NOT advocate ANYONE give up their meds without the help of a doctor and a gradual approach – I realized that, perhaps, these meds were only masking the real problem. I needed better nutrition. I needed to digest my food better. I needed good bacteria instead of no bacteria.

My mind was expanding, and at the same time, my skin was really improving!

This led me to research other nutrients I might be missing, and, over time, I’ve incorporated other super-foods and targeted digestive support to nourish my skin.

Here are a few strategies I started with to get me through that frustrating, seemingly unbeatable flare-up. And to this day, years later, I haven’t had another!

  • Adding sulfur-rich foods in small amounts, including sauerkraut, garlic and egg yolks.
  • Adding small amounts of fermented foods, like carrots and beets, while I was working on digestion.
  • Eating raw carrot salad for its hormone-balancing properties (as outlined by Ray Peat, Ph.D)
  • Judicious sun exposure for a natural source of skin-improving vitamin D (note: the sun can cause oxidation of the acne-causing oils on the face, so you DON’T have to expose your face to the sun. Wear a wide-brimmed hat. Exposing your arms and legs to the sun is sufficient for generating vitamin D).
  • Supplementing with cod liver oil, which provides critical skin-nourishing vitamins.
  • Supplementing with brewer’s yeast from Lewis Labs for a source of nucleic acid and chromium with complimentary B-vitamins. Lewis Labs brand had nearly 140% DV dietary chromium, and unfortunately, a change in supplier means that Lewis Labs no longer has high-chromium brewer’s yeast available. I’m stubbornly looking for a similar product, with no luck yet. That said, any brewer’s yeast can be beneficial.

I ate the foods above consistently BUT NOT OBSESSIVELY. As in, I wasn’t eating a bowl of fermented carrots for every meal or guzzling cod liver oil. While I packed the nutrient-dense foods in, that doesn’t mean I binged on them. A little goes a long way.

In addition to my Oil Cleansing Method, I began experimenting with other natural remedies, from toners to masks to oils on my skin. (I ALWAYS spot-tested first!)

I also began adding other superfoods, like traditional homemade broth and omega-3 rich seafood (I don’t recommend omega 3 supplements, as I’ll explain in the next edition of the Guide.

I also added digestive support, and at particularly stressful times in my life I’ve been careful to support digestion on an ongoing basis as well.

For me, stomach acid support and supporting my gut flora were most important; for others, liver support, enzymatic support, and gall bladder support might be needed. (I’ll discuss this the Guide well.)

Over time, I’ve built upon this routine and continued to see amazing, CONSISTENT results, even through episodes of stress AND through the hormonal ups & downs of pregnancy.

Back when things first went downhill, I had everything from large lesions (yes, I picked) to small, hard bumps and the Queen Mother of zits – underground land mines – migrating down my neck.

Several weeks later, and continuing in the months after I implemented these changes, the improvement was immense, and over time, nothing but a few pink remnants from healed blemishes remained.

I’ve never returned to the many prescriptions I ditched. And I’ve never looked back!

Astonishingly, after going through this process, I noticed that I can be “looser” with my everyday diet and withstand the types of stress that used to cause major breakouts.

There’s absolutely NOTHING like getting and keeping clear skin when you’ve been on the bad-skin merry-go-round for years, and healing acne naturally is an accomplishment that only those who have struggled with skin issues can truly understand.

Often, these kinds of posts inspire as many questions as they give answers. Check out the comments, because you may find what you need there. I absolutely love helping others, but please remember I’m only one gal with a full-time family to watch over – that’s why I’m putting everything I know as a Nutritional Therapy Practitioner and as a person who has healed her skin naturally in the next edition of my Purely Primal Skincare Guide.

Lots of love – and thanks for reading!

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      1. I can’t stand the taste of the cod liver oil so I buy the capsules from Green Pasture and take 8 a day. Do you think that is sufficient? Also, have you had any success or heard of any tips treating melasma? I have tried peels, laser, and expensive creams. I have the best success using hydroquinones but tried not using them an only using coconut oil and haven’t had success. Thanks for any help you might be able to provide!

        1. I think that’s plenty. I honestly don’t fret too much about portioning. If I miss a few days, I don’t worry too much about it! What I’ve read about melasma mostly centers around a few inter-related things: blood sugar disregulation, adrenal fatigue, and digestion. These are kind of cart/horse things, as they can all affect each other. Options for supporting digestion are standard stomach acid supplements (betaine HCl available at Vitamin Shoppe), or some folks use Apple Cider Vinegar; adrenal supportive ideas include grabbing some desiccated glandulars – http://www.drrons.com/grassfed-new-zeland-organs-glands-intro.htm – or check out the Adrenal Fatigue episodes of the Balanced Bites podcast (check iTunes!) I hope some of that helps!

      2. I’m not sure if you want to take 8 pills a day. The WAPF website talks about how too many omega-3’s are just as damaging as too many omega 6’s.

      3. I forgot to mention how I had the same experience as well. I used to get the boil-esque zits, especially on my nose. When I corrected my diet I haven’t had to worry about acne anymore; I rarely get any breakouts.

      4. Mr., you’re correct; when it comes to isolated polyunsaturates, there is much available at the WAPF website (much written by Chris Masterjohn) that indicates that not only should a relatively small percentage of our calories come from polyunsaturates, but that it’s important to balance the omega 3 and omega 6 pathways and ensure intake of omega 3 does not out-compete the omega 6 pathway. (Precious yet Perilous is an excellent article). It’s also important to consume adequate saturates to ensure proper use of the polyunsaturates. When it comes to cod liver oil, however, the WAP recommended dose of the Blue Ice CLO/BO blend we’re referencing would be approximately 8 capsules (more during pregnancy). I see no problem with this, as there are only trace amounts of Omega 3, 6 and 9 in this product, as well as beautiful, complex butter fat, and the primary purpose is to augment intake of vitamins A and D.

  1. I’ll comment here vs FB so as not to embarrass a certain 16, almost 17 year old. I WISH I could get her to at least stick w/Paleo, primal, whatever, with some consistency.
    She is very fair skinned (as in, almost transparent!) and has pretty bad acne, as well as female issues. I am pretty certain the majority of her body’s confusions would right themselves without pharmaceutical intervention – bc pills, the plethora of acne treatments – if only she’d get right with her diet.
    Ah well, I can only keep trying!

  2. Those results are amazing! How much CLO do you take a day? And, is it gross? Also, are you eating coconut oil by the spoonful or just applying it topically? If you’re eating it, how much per day and do you melt it first?
    Thanks for all the information – I’m going to be checking out CLO for my CBs!

    1. I use coconut oil lots to cook with or dab on sweet potato, but other than that, I just use it topically! Usually don’t take it supplementally. I take 1/2 tsp. of a Cod Liver Oil/Butter Oil blend in the mornings, and it’s not pleasant, but it’s not too bad! If you store it in the fridge it gels and you can get a pretty solid hunk of it, put it on your tongue, and swallow it down with a swig of water or broth. I highly, highly recommend Green Pasture…www.greenpasture.org!

  3. As usual, you’ve convinced me to do yet another weird ass thing I never thought I’d do. After 3-4 months of OCM, I am having a bit of an issue, likely due to going off birth control. (No babies for me either,my husband is fixed and finally got the “no swimmers” phonecall). I realize it will take a few months for my body to reclaim it’s own hormone levels after over 15 years on bc, but in the meantime, anything I can do to help is a good thing.
    I’ve been toying with the idea of the cod liver oil for a while – is it awfull? How much does the bottle you buy last? As for the sauerkraut (which I do love), how much per day do you eat? Have you tried making your own?
    Your skin looks amazing and I love your consistent battle to heal with food, from the inside out.

    1. It’s not too bad! (see response above.) I would really only recommend Green Pasture…The CLO/Butter oil blend is the way to go. Apparently the two together is like magic. It’s pricey but well worth it. I’m still on the first bottle, and hubs and I are both using it. It’s been at least a month now (those photos were slightly old). For the Kraut I’ve been doing 1/2 to 1 cup a day, usually as a snack or with snaussage. I am getting ready to make some next week! Any tips? With how much I eat there’s no way I’m going to pay $4 per jar for Bubbies!
      You rock. The fact that you even come over to my little blerg to give me affirmations pretty much makes my world complete!

    2. Hi Liz! What does it mean, if anything, that my breakouts are almost all on the right side of my face? I’m eating paleo, doing OCM and trying to follow your Skintervention Guide. I don’t get enough sleep or exercise (I’m a working mom with a 1-year old). I think you do private consultations and I’m starting to think I need one. Thanks!

      1. Hey Nanco! Unfortunately I’m not able to take new clients right now :/ I’m grateful for all the business coming in, but just can’t take on any more right now! In Chinese medicine, this COULD indicate either a lung or stomach disruption, but I’m not entirely sure right now. I’m doing some research and some work with a CM professional to try to build a new part of the Skintervention Guide with that type of information. You might try an acupuncturist for some extra wisdom on that! It could also just be where you most often hold your phone, cup your cheek, or sleep on that side. (your detergent could be irritating your skin, depending on what you’re using)
        I hope that helps!

      2. @Nanco
        It’s just an idea, but you could consider getting your teeth checked. I had the same problem (acne on one side of my cheeck/jawline) and my dentist discovered a huge infection. I had the tooth pulled and my acne is clearing up. I cannot say for sure that it will work for you, but I thought that might be useful.

  4. I have just been struggling with how to stop my oral antibiotic without looking like the Great Beast of the Mid-Atlantic. I tried about 4 days without it, and the spots have hit my face immediately. SO, I am going to give your tricks a try. CLO, sauerkraut, Brewer’s Yeast – check. (well, after this weekend when I have some time to get them, check.) I’ve been pretty loose with my diet lately and have just tightened it back up, so that should help as well. Do you find any food cause you to flare?

    1. Definitely use my sources! Lewis labs for Brewer’s Yeast and Green Pasture for a CLO/Butter oil blend. I did lots of research and those are 100% the way to go! I totally understand about feeling beastly. Trust me. Bubbie’s sauerkraut from Whole Foods – no citric acid, no additives, not even any salt. It’s the closest to unpasteurized kraut you can buy commercially (unless you have your own source – in which case, send me some!) If you start using coconut oil topically, expect about a week of little flare-ups before things get better. Apparently the “detox” effect is real!
      Caffeine causes my skin to get very red, and before I started with this regimen ANY deviation – sugar, rice, heavy creamer – would cause problems. Over the last few weeks I’ve enjoyed sushi once, heavy cream in my eggs, and Primal Palate’s grain-free coconut flour carrot cake and no flare-ups.

  5. Looks awesome! I wish I had your profile in pictures – my face is one big ol’ moon pie. 😛
    It’s pretty cool how much seems to be taken care of with diet (and exercise)… of course if doctors just prescribed that the drug companies would revolt. (And I’d probably be out of a job)

  6. This is awesome and could not have come at a better time. I’m also curious to know what brand of CLO you’re using…I’ve been meaning to start using it for a while now, but I’m glad I haven’t yet since you’re advocating fermented over heat-processed…I would have never known a difference!
    By the way, “I will sing the praises of fermented Cod Liver Oil from the top of my giant pile of money and rainbows (because that’s where I live)”…I laughed out loud! That’s what I think about Paleo in general, really. But I love your humor!

    1. See above, Melissa! Fermented is DEFINITELY the way to go. Do a butter oil/cod liver blend. According to Weston A. Price, the combo is “magic.”
      Thanks for the complement, and for reading! I love my money/rainbow pile 🙂

  7. I get breakouts exactly like that in that exact same place! If my diet falls off even a little it goes crazy! I am SO giving this a shot. I LOVE kraut and have used coconut oil before on my skin, but I think I’ll go back to it. Not sure why I stopped….Thanks for sharing this 🙂

  8. What an amazing difference, you look beautiful 🙂
    This post resonates so deep with me as I have also always dealt with the acne thing and have the benzoyl peroxide stained pillowcases and towels to prove it. Yes, I was also sucked in my Ms. Simpsons exclamations about Proactiv. I thought it was a teen-thing that would clear up as I got older but now that I’m closer to 30 than 20…I began to lose hope it was my hormones adjusting.
    Like you, I struggled with the hairline and jawline especially. Then, BOOM! I stopped eating grains/sugar (basically unintentional paleo?) and stopped getting acne. Like overnight. Now I am whole heartedly all about the paleo/nourshing traditions eating style. Sounds a bit weird but it’s so good to be able to touch my face again!
    Some nasty red buggers try to creep back but, like you, I have found Fermented Cod Liver Oil/Butter Oil, fermented foods (kefir, kvass, kimchi, kombucha, sauerkraut, etc) and Coconut oil to be the magic cure. Ii do the oil cleansing thing as well but now I forgo the Castor/Olive oIls in favor of coconut. I have been making and eating copious amounts of sauerkraut and never connected it to my acne staying clear but I guess that’s helping too!
    Before I added the Feremented CLO and sauerkraut I did notice that if I ate what I call “non-food foods” (refined sugar, ice cream, white flours, etc) I would be blessed with at least one zit within 24 hours. Now, as long as I slather on the coconut oil, eat plenty of fermented foods and take a probiotic this doesn’t happen (as I happily found out this past weekend while traveling and eating a few foods that would normally ALWAYS cause acne flare-ups).
    Thanks for writing on this topic and being brave enough to post pictures!

    1. I love your comment. I believe the addition of CLO, fermented foods, etc. create deep reserves that our body can call on, more so than the Paleo foods alone (I definitely run efficiently on them, but have found much less “wiggle room!”) I was just floored when I realized how many of my medications were actually food elements in disguise. Now, a pea-sized serving of Kraut probably wouldn’t work, but I’m willing to adjust the “dosage” for something so yummy!
      I love that I’m not alone in this experience. You’ve verified my personal observations. Thank you!

      1. I love the idea of the ‘deep reserves’ and that paleo foods make the body run efficiently. I feel a metaphor forming…perhaps a simile…
        It’s like a car who’s engine is all gunked up. The paleo foods (grass fed animal bits, clean fats, vegetables) are the cleanest fuel possible you can use. They don’t ADD any gunk to the body but they aren’t designed to go to town cleaning up all the gunk leftover from dirty fuels we used in the past (aka junk foods, vegetable oils, sugar, etc). That’s where the mega stars (CLO, probiotics, bone broth and fermented foods) step in and mop up all that old crud. Once the old gunk is removed, the reserved are there just in case you get suck in the middle of the NJ Turnpike on E and your only option is the questionable Sunco with the hot dog/sunglasses stand out front…and you really have to pee…ok, I think I’m losing focus…
        I noticed in another comment you mentioned you have added bone broth as well which is something, along with organ meats, that’s been a HUGE part of my diet lately. What you describe you’ve been eating sounds just like the GAPS (Gut and Psychology Syndrome) diet protocol (www.gapsdiet.com). You’re experiences here and what you write about on your blog have strengthened my resolve to stick with this very unconventional program so that I can continue to heal. Thanks!

        1. I love everything you just said! I couldn’t have said it better. I’m toying around with going GAPS just for the experience because I know it’s helped so many. I’m planning on attending GAPS practitioner training in October!

  9. Wow, your skin is beatiful. A stupid question, maybe: doesn’t the coconut oil make the skin greasy? I have greasy skin, and it seems oil should be the last thing to add. Can you link to instructions, please?

    1. Not stupid! I wish I had a second language 🙂 And both “greasy” and “oily” work. Check out my link here:
      I talk about cleansing with oil, and link to a page that explains the history and purpose of oil cleansing. Long story short, no – it doesn’t make your skin greasy! If it’s greasy after moisturizing with oil, just dab it off with a cool, damp washcloth. Oil is what your skin recognizes! Sometimes I do put on a huge glob, allow it to sit and absorb, then wipe off.
      I think I will do another post explaining all these things more fully. Soon!

  10. Wow, what a transformation! That CLO is a bit pricey for our budget, though! I may have to find a way to squeeze it in…are you using one of the flavored blends? I wonder what’s in that “flavor” they list in the ingredients?

  11. Can you cook with the brewer’s yeast, or will that ruin the nutritional value (or is this a completely different kind of brewer’s yeast?)? I had some delicious kale chips the other day made w/ EVOO, S&P, and brewer’s yeast, but I’ve never made anything myself so maybe this is a completely different product…?

  12. I’ve been a long time stalker of yours and just wanted to say THANK YOU for this post! I’ve struggled with acne for over 12 years now. While switching to a strict Paleo diet a year ago did help, nothing I’ve tried has been able to clear up everything (topical perscriptions, oral antibiotics, every over the counter product imaginable, OCM, homemade masks and scrubs…the list goes on and on and on). All I want is to have a pretty face and I’m willing to try anything, but I also want to be nice to my body in the process. Thank you again!!! I’ve submitted my orders for the Brewers yeast and CLO this morning, giving your site as a reference of course 🙂 Maybe they’ll give you a kickback or something for all the traffic you’ve no doubt generated.

    1. Yay, I have a stalker! I love it! Thanks for commenting, and I totally understand what you’ve gone through. I will point out that I DO still get blemishes from time to time (I have had a few on my forehead since I went off all meds, and one of the things those meds did for me was to make my forehead unequivocally PERFECT. So that’s a bit depressing). I also struggle with some redness in the T-Zone. So this is certainly a process. But I was astonished at how swiftly and beautifully my skin changed when I started this! I am going to make a little “update” post, but I will tell you that one thing I didn’t mention was that I’ve been drinking a cup of homemade bone broth every day as well. It’s VERY possible that helps too. Thanks for giving me as a reference! That’s so cool. And I’m 100% positive that you DO have a pretty face. 🙂

      1. Today is official day 1 of my new CaveGirlEats inspired routine! This morning I gagged down a spoonful of jelly-like CLO from Green Pasture (that stuff is FOUL!), followed by a mugful of homemade beef bone broth with a tablespoon of Lewis Lab’s Brewer’s Yeast (this stuff is not foul, however – I actually kind of enjoyed my cup of “meat tea” as I like to call it). Any tips to get the yeast to mix in all nicely instead of globbing up at the bottom? And after lunch or dinner I’ll have a serving of either sauerkraut or kim chee. Given that I pay $14/bottle for the good stuff, I’ve ordered my own sauerkraut crock.
        Thanks for the ideas! I’m really hoping that this will be the magical combo that finally does the trick 🙂

        1. Sauerkraut crock? That’s awesome! I want one! Where did you get yours?
          Unfortunately with the yeast it’s darn near impossible to get it to blend. I just swirl & swig.
          Okay, with the FCLO…I probably needed to be more clear…I was using the FCLO/Butter Oil blend! I’ve heard that the butter oil is the “magic activator” for the Fermented Cod Liver Oil…which did you get? If you got the regular CLO just be sure to get a little K2 in there with your grass-fed butter or ghee, and let me know how it goes!

  13. Thanks for sharing. I wouldn’t be brave enough to share my acne pics on the web! I’ve been working on a Paleo Diet/acne post. I will definitely reference this one.

  14. I couldn’t comment to your last one – so I’m now starting a new thread.
    I ordered the Harsch Fermenting Crock (the super duper Mercedes Benz of sauerkraut corcks) through Amazon (best price on the crock + free shipping!). It’s expensive, but accoridng to all the heavy-duty fermenters out there, it’s the best. I’ve been researching doing some fermenting of my own for a while and just needed a little nudge to get me going. Food & Wine magazine a few issues back had 3 different recipies for sauerkraut I’ve been dying to try.
    Swirl and swig….I’ll give that a shot tomorrow! I also ordered the flakes and when I finally perfect my coconut milk yogurt, I can add those as a textural sprinkle. The probiotics in the yogurt should have some good effects too, right?
    I did get the blend! I ordered the “chocolate” before I saw that you sucked it up and went for the unflavored, but it really doesn’t make a bit of difference. I keep telling myself it’s for my skin 🙂

    1. I’m actually under the impression that high-quality brewer’s yeast from non-gmo sugar beets (like that sold by Lewis Labs) is OK for GAPS, but that’s just what I’ve heard through the grapevine…I honestly can’t remember a definitive answer from Dr. McBride…
      BY is inactive…as in, dead. Which is apparently a good thing 🙂

    1. Grace and/or Liz,
      When do you incorporate the apple cider vinegar toner into your routine? I recently went off birth control (3 months ago) and lately I have been breaking out both on the surface and deep below the skin (which are the worst!!) I started the oil cleansing method, taking the cod liver/butter oil blend, and moisturizing with coconut oil. I am getting married in 6 months and have got to get this problem under control. I’d like to try the toner, but am not sure where it should go into the routine. Thanks for any advice!

  15. Hey Cavegirl –
    Your photos are AWESOME!!! I have the same problem but just on my chin. It drives me seriously crazy. I was wondering what is the difference between brewer’s yeast (the one you used) and say Bragg’s Nutritional Yeast?
    Thank you for your fantastic website. Very informative.

    1. Brewer’s yeast is rich in chromium, and nutritional yeast is not! Chromium is the “glucose tolerance factor” and what is rumored to be helpful in skin health! Lewis Labs carries the best possible product, in my opinion…it’s grown on beets and not extracted as a by-product of the beer brewing process (therefore, not created alongside wheat!)

  16. Thanks for the info. Do you recommend any of the offered flavors that they have in the CLO/Butter oil blend? I see they have chocolate, cinnamon, natural, and then the capsules. Any preference?

    1. I currently have both the blend AND separate bottles of liquid FCLO and BO in rotation. I do NOT recommend the FCLO alone unless you’re VERY brave and quite accurate with the dropper! I’ve tried the chocolate blend thanks to my very generous friend Liz of CrossFit ACT. I think it’s decent, although she wasn’t a fan! Truly, the taste and smell of Fermented CLO is quite disgusting, but if you buy the blend – whether flavored or not – and remember to refrigerate it between servings, it gels quite nicely so that you can take a fairly solid serving, place it farther into your mouth, and swallow it just like a pill with a swig of lemon water. Am I grossing you out? 😉
      I work with a few folks, consulting on fertility and doing some lifestyle triage, and I have no qualms recommending the capsules to them. A little casing won’t hurt ya!

  17. Hi Liz! I’ve got another random, months-late question for you…It seems you take your FCLO/BO blend in the morning, but dinner is usually the only meal I eat at home right now (trying intermittent fasting with a 1 p.m.-9 p.m. eating window). Since the idea of taking the blend w/o food sounds pretty tough, the last two days I’ve been taking it around 8 p.m. with dinner. It may be just a coincidence, but I’ve had a really hard time falling asleep both nights, and have woken up a few times during the night (a problem I usually don’t have).
    It got me wondering whether you shouldn’t take the FCLO/BO blend in the evenings–any reason you know of why I shouldn’t? Is there a big energy boost associated with it or anything along those lines?
    Also, is taking the blend along with any other supplements (Vitamin D, fish oil, etc.) a problem? Thank you!!

    1. Hmm, not sure about this question! I would imagine it shouldn’t be a problem, but if your body is telling you something, maybe it’s worth stopping for a few days and seeing if the symptom subsides? I know the woman from Cheeseslave will just take an extra big dose 1x/week, so you could think about that as well if you don’t want to mess with your daily routine. I don’t supplement with Vitamin D at all right now (since the spring) and I wonder if the natural D in the CLO may have any kind of battle with the D supplement? That’s a complete shot in the dark; but my instinct for myself was to abandon the extra D supplement, go with the CLO/BO blend, and get some good sun this summer. The only other caution about CLO I’ve heard – and this is just one little unattributed tidbit repeated over & over on the internet – is not to take it if you’re using any synthetic Vitamin A, like Tretinoin or Retin-A. No clue as to the truth behind this, but it sounds logical! I also don’t take fish oil often, but I have taken a few capsules with the CLO now and then. Didn’t seem to be a problem.
      I’ve taken my blend without food and it’s not tasty, but it doesn’t bother my tummy at all. I hope this helps!

    1. An interesting fact: All cold-pressed oils are expeller pressed. I think the biggest difference in so-called cold-extracting methods are expeller vs. centrifuge (like the oil sold at Wilderness Family Naturals). HOWEVER, all expeller pressed oils are not necessarily cold-pressed, from my understanding. It’s very murky territory, from what I can tell. You can read this page and see what you think:
      Also, this page discusses “Copra” which I think would probably be what people would want to avoid (not that that’s easy)
      So after doing a bit more research, I’m going to say…maybe don’t fret about what kind you’re putting on your face, so much as what kind you’re consuming regularly. From what I read, the lauric acid remains intact regardless of processing; but one might want to be a little more judgmental when it comes to what you’re actually swallowing (copra vs. fresh coconut).
      I like Dr. Bronners! I like his regular liquid soap plus apple cider vinegar rinse for a good shampoo/conditioning regimen (besides my Baking Soda/ACV, of course). Dr. Bronners is good to go.

  18. Do you use refined or unrefined on your face? I currently have some unrefined and for cooking it is a little more coconut than I would prefer. It is fine on sweet potatoes or squash but on eggs it is odd. Also what is your ratios for OCM? I have SUPER oily skin so I wasn’t sure what the proper ratio was. THANKS!!

    1. I use unrefined! Though I can’t back it up, I always assume that the less processed/refined, the better. I’d err on that side, even here, since it’s the fatty (lauric) acids in coconut oil that have an affinity for the skin and hair…I wouldn’t want to risk it. The smell isn’t always my favorite…I do get a little sick of it 🙂 oh, well.
      For OCM – when using a castor oil + other oil blend, I’ve done as much as 50/50; but usually stick around 30 Castor/70 other. You may even try doing the OCM exclusively with coconut oil. I’ve done that and now alternate the two regimens. Of course, I get the makeup all off first, sometimes by rubbing in coconut oil and wiping; sometimes by using a Norwex cloth (I’l cover that eventually) then commence the OCM for real.

  19. So about the Brewers Yeast, my parents raised me on that stuff, I love it. We always ate it on popcorn, and recently I mix it with hummus and the flavor is awesomeness by the mouthful! I didn’t know that it was good for you, so thanks for all your articles. I do have one question though, I’m on many meds that’s i truly do need, other wise I couldn’t get out of bed. Will this have a negative effect on the whole detox idea?

    1. Heather, I wish I could answer that question for you! Unfortunately that’s between you and your doc or pharmacist…Although I can’t imagine it would be a problem to add these foods to your routine. They’re just traditional foods, after all 🙂 A Paleo/Primal/Real Foods Diet can only improve your overall health! Also, WAP stands for Weston A. Price!

  20. Hi there, loving your blog!
    One quick question: is the CLO brand you were talking about the Green Pastures Blue Ice Royal Gel (blend of 2/3 Blue Ice fermented cod liver oil and 1/3 High vitamin butter oil.)?
    Thank you!

  21. Just wanted to vouch for the Cinnamon Tingle FCLO/Butter Blend from Green Pastures…. haven’t been taking it long enough for the effects to kick in but I can vouch for the taste… YUM-O! The only iffy thing is that it has stevia (the flavorless one does not) – but its like a gel-like candy if you stick it in the fridge – and the cinnamon is strong. Tastes great. Can’t wait for it to start working 🙂

  22. hi again – do you think it’s cool to mix my yeast into cuppa broth in the morning? also, i’ve read some things about taking a few Tbs of ACV to help with acne (among other things) – does sauerkraut take care of that? and I’ve seen some peeps using ACV as a toner. is that something you’ve tried?

    1. Definitely. I’ve done that many times. I think the ACV idea is that it supplements/stimulates the digestive process, but I’m unsure. I tried to do this, but it just didn’t stick! I’ll do an ACV toner now and again, especially if I use baking soda to exfoliate. It balances the pH!

  23. Hi Liz,
    I love your blog. I just received my Green Pastures order, opened the bottle, and took my first swig yesterday. This morning I realized that I made a mistake and only ordered the Cod Liver Oil without the Organic Butter. Will I not receive the optimal results because of this? I’m plagued with a lifetime of acne.

    1. You took a big swig of ONLY CLO? Brave woman! I think the CLO will definitely be of benefit, but the reason I go with the blend is because Dr. Weston Price observed a “synergy” between the CLO and Butter Oil that he even referred to as “magic.” Maybe just make sure you’re getting plenty of grass-fed butter and ghee until you can order the blend? I really think it was the K2 + A that helped my skin the most. Also, have you seen Chris Kresser’s latest about acne? http://chriskresser.com/naturally-get-rid-of-acne-by-fixing-your-gut

  24. Hello,
    I thought I saw somewhere on your site about a discount for Cocoa Pink. Did I just totally imagine that?
    BTW, I started the OCM w/ just coconut oil and am totally loving it, my husband and teenage are doing to too and my daughters skin has never looked better, clearing up and healing some recent pimple scars.

  25. I am going to order the Cod Liver combo but I cannot do sauerkraut..just the smell makes me sick. Is there anything else I can in it’s place?

    1. I wouldn’t say it’s a substitute – I think it’s important to get multiple sources of probiotic foods. But it is a good source of probiotics in itself, although it’s created differently with different raw materials!

  26. Hi Liz…
    Thanks for this post… I’m in the same boat re:acne… and at 30 something…
    So, I’ve made sauerkraut, I’ve made Kombucha, I’m trying new fermented things… I’ve bought the Brewer’s Yeast – which isn’t so bad actually… I can’t afford the CLO yet – but maybe if I need an extra kick in the face (i guess) I’ll make the plunge.
    I have a question for you… have you tried simply not washing your face? I tried the OCM for a week or so… and it feels great, but I did start to get some pimples… so I decided to go without putting anything on my face (probably try this for a month or so)… and after a week – I really like the results! I think I’ll reserve the OCM for spa days 🙂 Maybe I need to tweak my mixture… but I guess if I’m going go all out paleo on this, I’ll bust the social norm of face-washing too…
    Thanks for your inspiration on this!

    1. Ha! I need to update my pages…I’m doing the OCM MAYBE twice per week now (though continuing to MOISTURIZE with oil or the balm from GreenPasture.org) and the rest of the week just wiping my face with a little Norwex cloth. I’ll get an updated page together…thanks for the kick in the pants!

      1. I love Norwex! I am having the same experience you have described….went Paleo/Primal 21 months ago, acne cleared up, now major flare up on chin/jawline. I am on day 3 of OCM as you have suggested. I’m curious how Norwex has changed your OCM. I had one friend just use the cloth and water and then had her skin tested for bacteria and there was none! I love them for the exfoliation. I just ordered the Cinnamon Tingle….hoping this is it! I have polycystic ovarian syndrome and the acne used to be cystic and severe. I was so excited to have the new lifestyle help, then so dismayed that it came back. I even had my hormones tested and they came back normal. (Which is awesome!) I am hopeful for this CLO/Butter Oil magic.

        1. I OCM less now than before, and use the Norwex cloth to remove makeup! I really love it! Although I wonder if I need to replace the bacteria I’m removing. I’m looking into it. Keep me updated on how you do with the FCLO/BO blend!

  27. I noticed a HUGE improvement in a couple weeks. My neck/jawline had almost completely healed up and then I went on a 5 day road trip and had dairy, nuts and lots of restaurant food….didn’t bring my “miracle” ingredients….and it was That time of the month….so I did break out….not nearly as bad…but as soon as I was home and back to the routine my face is healing up nicely. I am feeling so hopeful!!

  28. Hi Liz, Thanks for all the great advice. Do you (or maybe other readers) have any preference for the Brewers yeast flakes vs powder. I want to order some and can’t decide as I’ve never tried either.

    1. No preference! I find that the stuff doesn’t actually dissolve, so either way, you may still find it a bit gritty 🙂 Also – I believe they’re carrying Lewis Labs at Whole Foods now!

  29. Hi Liz!
    Do you know anything about whether those with a dairy allergy can take the CLO/Butter oil blend?? I’d hate to miss out on this magical product, I’m still struggling pretty badly with my skin and really hope I can try this.
    Also- does the brewers yeast have any affect on someone with yeast overgrowth?

    1. Hiya! I’ve heard from a few folks who do just fine on it – it’s unlikely IMO that ANY of the dairy proteins are still left in the blend. The oil should be totally isolated in the processing. You COULD go with the FCLO without the BO, and get a separate K2 MK-4 supplement, like the one sold by Thorne and available on Amazon, but I can’t tell you what the proper proportion would be FCLO:Thorne.
      The Lewis Labs Brewer’s yeast isn’t supposed to exacerbate yeast overgrowth, but I can’t say for sure whether others’ experiences have been different! If you’re worried about that, you could try a chromium picolinate supplement. (I like the LL Brewer’s Yeast for the Chromium content!)
      Hope that helps!

  30. There seems to be some controversy about Brewers yeast containing free glutamates that act a a neurotoxin. Some say it’s not the same as MSG, others say our bodies react to it the same way. I can’t find any absolute answers.
    What is the deal?

    1. No clue Hannah! I honestly don’t have any concerns about the Brewer’s Yeast from Lewis Labs. I usually make very specific brand recommendations, and this is why – because you usually can’t cast a wide net over all the products of varying quality and processing methods that are out there!

  31. Love this method and have seen results after just three days. WOW. Issues since I was 10/11 years old. Been on every drug in the book. Finally just hit my wall and found your site. NEVER GOING BACK!! My husband is making fun of me about the sauerkraut and CLO, but I could care less. This stuff is amazing. I’ve had deep cysts along my jawline for years and they are miraculously GONE. GONE. For people with cystic acne, you know why I am shocked.
    My question: do you take any vitamin D supplements in addition to the CLO? I have Rheumatoid Arthritis and a high dosage is recommended. Just curious if you take more in addition to the CLO. Thanks!

  32. I was having a hard time downing the brewer’s yeast, but just created the most delectable little snack that incorporates it: one small apple, one tbls pecans, four dates, two heaping tbls brewers yeast, one heaping tbls coconut oil. Put it all in my food processor and eating it out of a bowl now. So yummy!!

  33. Hi Liz,
    I am avoiding dairy products so as to control my acne. So,regarding the Cod Liver Oil/Butter Oil blend from GreenPasture.org, can I consume then? Since it contains butter..Also, is kimchi considered as a fermented product? But somehow it’s kinda salty~

    1. I think you should be fine with the butter oil – it’s basically pure fat, with all milk proteins removed. It’s a highly concentrated source of vitamin K2, which is great for the skin. I’d go for it. If not, I’d still do the Cod Liver Oil, perhaps with a K2 supplement (like the one from Thorne, which you can find on Amazon). Kimchi is like Korean sauerkraut – yes, it’s fermented!

  34. Thanks so much for sharing your experience with us! I have been battling acne for so long, I thought it would go away as I got older, but nope, no such luck (I’m almost 42). What you are doing makes so much sense, I am going to try it! I have a question though, since I eat a fair amount of ghee (I make it at home from unsalted Irish Kerrygold butter) everyday, would I only need to purchase the fermented cod liver oil? I will definitely be getting some Lewis brewers yeast to take as well. Thanks for all your valuable posts!

  35. Hi Liz!
    Would you put any faith in probiotic skin care products? For example, Eminence has a line. Or do you think probiotic nutrition is enough? I take probiotics, fermented cod liver oil, and eat sauerkraut every day, but still have issues with acne. My doc says its a bacterial issue and wants to put me on antibiotics, which I don’t want. I’m just wondering if you know anything about probiotic skin care and whether that’s an option rather than having to take antibiotics.

    1. I’m fascinated with probiotic skin and home care, and am currently doing some writing about it! I like it, and if you try it, please let me know what you think. I definitely think it’s worth a go before you opt for antibiotics.

      1. Great! I’m currently trying to find one that doesn’t use yogurt, because I have issues with dairy when I eat it, so I’m not sure how my skin would react to it. So, if you know of some lines that don’t use dairy, let me know! I will definitely let you know when I try it and if it works. What are the best probiotic home care products? I can’t wait to read you blog about this!

  36. Hello again. Well, it’s been a couple months now since starting the routine and I initially thought I was improving. (I commented back in March) My jawline and neck are still having trouble though. I seem to break out with ovulation then the acne stays until my period ends…then my skin heals up a bit, then I’m back at ovulation. 🙁 I’ve had my hormones tested and everything is normal. It’s actually great that I’m having regular cycles. My next step is to try the 21DSD. I’m feeling great other than this persistent acne on my neck.

  37. Love your site! I started CrossFit in February and went Paleo in April and I feel a lot better BUT my skin has gotten a lot worse. I used to have maybe one cyst every once in a while (although my skin was never great), but immediately after going Paleo my whole chin erupted and I am at a loss why things got worse and haven’t seemed to improve over time.
    Any ideas? Before going Paleo I didn’t eat any processed foods and got a lot of fruits, vegetables, leans proteins and “healthy” whole grains. After a few months, I would have thought that my system would have adjusted! I also skipped my period last month, and so I’m pulling back on CrossFit b/c I think my body might be a bit stressed out after all these changes.
    I also take the Radiant Pasture codliver/butter oil blend (unflavored- I just hold my nose and chase it with some egyptian licorice iced tea- easy!) and had incorporated a lot of coconut oil into my cooking.
    I’m nervous about trying the cleansing routine you recommend, but maybe it’s the next best step to try?

    1. Thanks for reading Haley! Sometimes you just need some time to adjust. As much as I hate the word “detox,” sometimes it happens – and slowly. There may be other factors at work as well (just coming of birth control? Just moved? Exercising too much, too hard and adding to your stress load? You may have hit it on the nose there!) I just can’t see what nutrients you’d be missing, or what could have changed for the worst after changing to a low-inflammation diet. There ARE a few folks who respond to essential fatty acids differently from others, and if it were me, I would probably experiment with some Evening Primrose Oil (GLA). Stress may be compromising your ability to convert EFAs properly.
      As far as the OCM, I think it helps some greatly, and others just find it doesn’t help at all. (If the comments here are any indication!) You may want to start simply by moisturizing with jojoba oil to see how you do with it. Aura Cacia brand is easy to find at Whole Foods. Keep in touch!

      1. Thanks for your reply!
        I have been taking the Evening Primrose Oil for the past month or so, but I haven’t noticed any difference (same w/ the zinc). And just now I can see another ugly cyst about the rear it’s ugly head… I even made some mineral bone broth last week! So I had been eating some kefir, but I’m going to cut dairy completely and I’ll go find some Jojoba Oil.
        I’m trying to be patient, but I’m just so stumped about why things turned for the worse. And because I’m understanding more and more about the nutritional core of the no sugar, no grains concept, I also don’t feel I can go back to what I was doing before anyway! Let’s hope this is just an extended adjustment period!

      2. Oh- actually I have a follow up question. Do you know people who have bad reactions to coconut oil? That’s the only food that I really added into my diet when I transitioned to Paleo. Thanks!

  38. Hi Liz! I recently stumbled across the Balanced Bites podcast and your blog. Thank you for posts like this–I find it very encouraging. When I was 16 or so, my dermatologist told me that under no circumstances did food have any relation to acne (ugh). Being an impressionable teenager, I believed her and scarfed down antibiotics, then Accutane, then birth control pills and Spironolactone like it was my job–for about 10 years total. While these prescriptions cleared my skin, I have been battling seemingly constant fatigue for the past few years while on Spiro. Three months ago, I decided to stop taking the meds and try to let my body heal through good nutrition. I started out following WAP principles (minus the bone broth, which I haven’t gotten around to yet), but cut the grains and dairy two weeks ago after reading about the benefits of the paleo lifestyle. Though I’ve had some pimples pop up on my chin, my skin is looking pretty darn good so far, and I am so encouraged by how you healed your acne.
    Out of curiosity, have you tried the Green Pasture beauty balm or heard anything about putting CLO directly on the skin? I’ve been thinking about giving it a try in addition to the FCLO I’m ingesting.

    1. Sounds just like my story! I was on antibiotics so long, and of course saw initial benefits so BEGGED to continue them, only to swing wildly in the other direction, probably because of the resulting DYSbiosis! Spiro’s a tough one.
      I always start with the gut and nutritional status – with myself AND with clients – but there’s definitely more to the story after that! This is a great post by Stefani Ruper you might enjoy: http://www.paleoforwomen.com/hormonal-acne-where-its-coming-from-and-what-to-do-about-it/
      I adore GP’s beauty balm. I have about six of them stacked up in my cabinet, because I order a few every time I place an order for the CLO/BO blend! I was very interested in topical CLO, especially as it related to topical Vitamin A derivatives…but it’s just too darn stinky! The balm has a very small amount of CLO, so as to be tolerable to the nose. I’d definitely try it.

  39. I have a question and I hope it hasn’t already been answered and i just missed it up there somewhere! lol You made this comment, “Chromium is the “glucose tolerance factor” What do you mean by that? I can’t have any gluten ever again….and the Brewers yeast worries me because I have systemic yeast/candida problems….even in my lung and skin. I don’t want to do anything that is going to make it worse (of course I say that AFTER I eat a candy bar and yeast loves sugar! lol) Baby steps… So those are my questions. for now…i will be checking out the rest of your pages out tomorrow. I wash my face with coconut iol quite often, put it on my legs at night because it’s too heavy to do it in the mornings. I was using olive oil but they art stll dry…so i will have to try some of the other oils you list for my legs and arms….those are the only dry parts of me, the rest of me is very oily…very oily yuck!
    Thanks so much for all this information…it is truly wonderful and you are such a blessing to many people that have so much brain fog that we can’t research or keep trying different things…so yours is a great and fabulous help! Love it..

    1. Hi TLB – thank you so much for all your kind words! They are so much appreciated. You’ll have to google around a bit on the GTF (glucose tolerance factor), because honestly there’s not much out there about it (it’s basically the idea that chromium/GTF helps your body deal with glucose effectively, thereby mitigating some issues connected with blood sugar imbalances, which I have struggled with). The ONLY ONLY ONLY Brewer’s Yeast I like is Lewis Labs. They use non-gmo sugar beets. Read more about their goods here: http://www.lewis-labs.com/products/brewersyeast.htm
      It’s my understanding that this particular line will not exacerbate Candida, but I can’t guarantee – you may want to ask the LL people via their site form!

  40. Hi. I’m not sure if this has already been asked in prior comments, there are just too many for my lazy self to read through, but would brewers yeast give me diarrhea? I’ve been taking 2 tbs per the recommended serving on the container over the past few days and my stomach has been getting really crampy and my stool is getting to the point of having darrhea. I also do the saurkraut and clo blend but I have been doing those for a couple weeks already and this didn’t start to happen till I introduced the brewers yeast. Should I be cutting back? Thanks.

    1. Hi Tanya – I honestly have no idea! It may be your body getting used to a new/different food. It’s up to you whether you continue with it. I really do like Brewer’s yeast from Lewis Labs ONLY. Is yours from Lewis Labs? It’s the only brand of Brewer’s yeast made from non-GMO sugar beets and not the beer brewing process.

  41. The Paleo eating regime cures so many modern-day ailments that traditional doctors happily prescribe drugs for. But, sometimes those ‘cures’ slip quietly in and it’s only when you realise that you haven’t had particular problems for a time that this sinks in.
    As a long-time distance runner, I had to give up because of the pain in my knees. I truly believed that a knee construction would be unavoidable. However, within weeks of embracing Paleo, the pain was gone and i was able to resume running. I then realised that two separate skin problems had cleared up, one for which I had been using a steroid cream over a long period!
    The attention to eating unadulterated food, and taking absolute responsibility for everything that you eat, is a huge part of the health puzzle.
    An interesting thing to note is that over time I have noticed that colleagues approach me now when they need opinion on problems. Part of this is that when all around me get sick, I seem to be able to ride the wave.

  42. awesome awesome awesome! Just found your site today & have been bouncing all over, affirming a lot of what i have been moving towards. Your site is the best one i have found !! You put things in a way that is easy ‘to get’. Thanks ever so much for talking/sharing.
    One thing i am curious about & can’t find much on is spirulina & the other algaes…i would think that the paleo folks were into them but no one seems to be addressing them. So… i am asking you what you think, Liz!
    thanks again for being here!

    1. Thank you so much Dabney! Your comment made my day. I don’t begrudge anyone some spirulina, really, especially if they feel it’s helping…I just feel like I’m getting most of the nutrients from my sardines and overall food intake, and in the beneficial proportions inherent to those foods. I started eating sardines instead of taking fish oil some time ago, for various reasons that I’ll write about eventually. I have a supplement/digestive support routine that I think is pretty comprehensive, and don’t see the need for it right now! I hope that helps!

    Hi Liz!
    Thanks for the great info. I’ve recently been using ACV as a toner, but read about using raw, local honey as a mask daily, and then using the ACV afterwards. Have you tried this or had any success with it?

    1. Hi Sarah! I say, why not? If it goes well, it certainly isn’t a harmful practice 🙂 I certainly like ACV as a toner. The toners from Primal Life Organics are wonderful too! If you do try this, let me know what you think! We talked about topical honey on the Balanced Bites podcast coming out Thursday 9/13.

  44. I’ve been troubleshooting my skin now for years… prior to finding paleo – I was a proactiv girl. But informed by my ancestors… I decided to give it up and look for natural ways to fight the zits. I’m 38 now – and have struggled with this for decades. I tried the OCM… I tried the Brewer’s Yeast…. I enjoy fermented veggies on occasion, I do take the CLO blend daily now. Here’s what appears to be working best for me.
    We are told all of our lives that we should be gentle with our skin – or we’ll get wrinkles. Well, I’m about to find out. I’ve been simply using a washcloth with hot hot water. I steam my face a bit, and then I scrub it with the hot washcloth… in a circular motion – particularly over my chin, jawline, and bridge of my nose. After a good minute of that… then I rub in coconut oil. I do this twice daily. Knock on wood, things are looking up.
    Oh, and I cut my nails – waaaay back. I have a habit of touching my face a lot… this seems to help.

  45. Hi Liz,
    Does the BLUE ICE™ Royal Butter Oil/Fermented Cod Liver Oil Blend from Green Pastures now comes in capsules instead? Is it the same as the liquid one? Can you please direct me to the exact link for the one you are taking? Thanks! 🙂

  46. I’m struggling with not picking at my acne . . . it’s improved thanks to paleo/ oil cleansing/ Green Pastures but the picking is a 12 year habit and it’s seriously impeding my healing process. Any tips?? I’m out of will power when I go to wash my face at night, from trying to stop myself during the day, and am about to go buy some poster board to put on my bathroom mirror. I don’t have any other nervous habits (nail biting etc) . . . just this one.

  47. I was at your BB workshop yesterday. I’ve read so much about paleo the past year and a half I didn’t think there would be much new information for me. Totally wrong. You gave me some hope for my skin. This is a very big deal:) After listening I think I have a vitamin A deficiency (I was thinking I was getting A from sweet potatoes and carrots). I have STRUGGLED with hormonal acne forever (I”m 31 and started breaking out when I was 10). I took antibiotics and topical creams for years and neither one really worked. I had high DHEA sulfate and was diagnosed with PCOS. I don’t have any other symptoms besides that and acne though (No facial hair, irregular periods, my BG, thyroid and insulin levels are within normal range etc.). But….I started taking birth control pills to treat it. They worked! No acne for the six years I took them. I started paleo almost a year and a half ago and my trainer told me to get a copper IUD and go off the pill, just to eliminate artificial hormones. I did and for 3 months didn’t have a problem. After that, whoa. Now nothing has worked! I felt like I had done every natural thing under the sun and it’s so frustrating! It was also making me so frustrated to hear testimonials of how weeks into eating paleo other people’s acne went away.
    I also have small bumps on the back of my arms. I always have. I’m going to try taking the Cod Liver oil butter blend. You spoke of an oil but I could only find capsules at green pasture.org. Is that a big deal? Is there anything else you think I should do? Either way, thank you!

      It looks like the capsules are the only thing in stock right now until Mid-October. I just ordered them just to get started and honestly, it’s probably a good way to start out 🙂
      Liz, how many capsules do you recommend?

      1. Hi Brandice! I would say 5 capsules per day would be my approach, even though I know the serving size says 2 caps. Sorry for the delay in answering – your comment accidentally went to spam!

  48. I’ve stumbled upon something interesting… because my face doesn’t seem to want to clear up entirely – no matter what I do…
    Have you ever heard of fluoroderma? It’s acne associated with fluoride detox. I’m beginning to think this may be a big issue for me… and it’s kind of scary.
    Curious as to your experience / knowledge with this…

  49. Hey Liz, First off I have to say I LOVE LOVE LOVE your website! I’m having some major issues with my skin! I’ve been Paleo for the last 6 months with a bit of improvement in my acne, but not great. I have been on a 21 sugar detox for a week now as well since I find that my skin really reacts to poorly to sugar. I’ve been taking BLUE ICE™ Royal Butter Oil/Fermented Cod Liver Oil Blend for 2 weeks now and I supplement my diet with pre/probiotics since I haven’t tried making my own Kraut yet and can’t find a good source fermented where I live. I’ve tried everything under the sun for my acne, so I thought what could hurt giving OCM a go. I’ve been doing it for 6 days now and my skin has never been so bad in my life! I made sure I got the best quality organic oils I could find. I’ve been using 80% Grapeseed Oil, 20% Castor Oil and moisturizing with Jojoba Oil at night with the steaming cloth. In the morning I’ve been just give my skin a rinse and another swipe of Jojoba oil. My skin is now fully covered in small red bumps all over my cheeks and chins, which are places I never had acne before. My chin and around my mouth is full of painful giant cystic bumps and there is a handful of whiteheads as well. My skin feels rough and slightly dry, also it feels itchy. I know that your not a dermatologist and what works for some doesn’t for others, but any thoughts on what might have happened? Also if OCM is not going to work for me, do you have any suggestions on natural alternatives? Thanks you heaps in advance!!

    1. Hi Krista! Thank you so much for your sweet words.
      I’m so sorry you’re having troubles with your skin. It’s tough to help not knowing what you were doing BEFORE the OCM. Did you give up a slew of medications and switch over? Topicals or birth control? (It’s really important to ALWAYS get help from your prescribing doc/derm when wanting to go off skin meds, and coming off slowly is best.) Or did you just switch from a soap to the OCM? While some people do have a minor detox effect when they first start, this sounds like something more severe. Oils really can’t cause this type of effect – oil doesn’t “clog pores” as many people think. Also, since a few other changes (diet & lifestyle) are happening at the same time, it’s tough to nail down what might be the cause, whether internal or external.
      I will have a skin care guide out in a few weeks and I think it will help you – it’ll cover topical routines, helpful foods and digestive support! Keep an eye out!

      1. Hi Liz, Thanks heaps for the response! I am a self confessed beauty product junkie! But in anticipation of starting OCM I’ve been slowing weening my self off so many products. Not prescribed topicals tho. I was down to a gentle cleanser, toner, moisturizer, mask, and 3 different spot treatments. Sounds silly now when I write it out! No wonder my skin was always broken out! One important fact I forgot to mention also was that I have just come off the birth control pill about 6-7 weeks ago. Not sure how long it takes for that stuff to get out of your system and if it would suddenly have such a impact on my skin? Anyway, my skin has really improved over the last week. I stopped using the castor oil/grapeseed blend I was using for OCM and instead I have been using only jojoba oil to remove makeup and then following up with a raw Manuka honey mask at night. In the morning I just rinse my face with water and put a bit of jojoba on for moisture. My skin has healed up heaps and I’ve only got one new breakout since. YAY! I think the castor oil was just too deep cleansing for me and dried my out. So I’m going to stick with this and see where it takes me. Thanks again for your support and for inspiring me to break out of my product addiction! I look forward to your skin guide.

  50. I’m super interested in the ideas for skin care. Setting out for the store today. Perhaps you’ve covered this somewhere and I’ve missed it. I’m wondering about makeup. Maybe none is necessary once our skin looks fantastic. But my vanity needs a bit of coverage (needing to reduce the freckles a bit) Anyway do you have suggestions for makeup ie eye shadows and foundation.
    No sense in cleaning naturally, then slathering chemicals in the name of vanity. Thanks for the additional suggestions. As well as a great website. Just came across it and I’ll be back often.

    1. Hi Christa! Coincidentally, I just answered this question on another post. Here’s what I said:
      “I’ll be tackling this in my skin care guide coming out in a few weeks. My general recommendation is Caren Minerals (I’ll have a code for them in my guide, I believe) or 100 Percent Pure at this time. There are a few others I’m working on trying, but those are the top choices with the best feedback. That said, Trina from Primal Life Organics (who is contributing to the guide) is coming out with makeup next year, and I have no doubt it will be absolutely spectacular. Keep your eyes open for that!”
      Thanks for reading Christa!

  51. HI liz thanks for this awesome site, I visit it often. I started paleo on Nov. 9, 2012, was not completely gluten free until about 2 weeks later. This is cause there was hidden gluten that I was not aware of in things I was consuming like coconut milk, the learning curve I guess. I do really read labels now. I am not eating grass fed yet as it isn’t in my budget, but doing organic things when I can. I am doing the autoimmune paleo as I have Rhumatoid Arthritis, Fibro, and bursitis. I eat even amounts of poultry, beef, and pork and try really hard to get in at least 2 servings of fish a week, working on adding in more. Try to eat at least a half cup of raw sauerkraut a day and drink 16oz of Kambucha 2-3 times a week. I am still trying to get rid of dairy, but the only thing it goes in is my coffee in the A.M. I do take a lot of vitamin supplements, as I have had gastric bypass and don’t absorb as much nutrients from my food as I should. As a result I don’t absorb iron taken orally any more and have to have injections. I have been suffering from acne since I had my son 14 years ago. It started getting better with the Paleo and I have started the oil cleansing method, and no poo I am not using any “traditional” products on or in my body. I am still having acne problems and started the Lewis Lab Brewers yeast 2 days ago, I have noticed things drying up already. But do I need to take the 3 tablespoons a day that is suggested on the package? Also how did you take it? I don’t like the taste, and have tried mixing it in a smoothie and in my sweet potatoes. I am making some bone broth, so I am gonna try mixing it in that for my morning beverage. Hoping I like bone broth made with turkey bones more than with beef bones. I just couldn’t do the beef bone broth, not yet any way. I also added the organs into my broth for cooking. I know I couldn’t eat them yet, it just makes my tummy queasy. Also with that I want to do the cod liver oil/butter blend, but worried I won’t be able to get it down. Do you or any of your readers have any suggestions for that?
    Sorry I know this is long, but wanted to add any info you might need to know. Also I know I need to get rid of the dairy, and I have found some canned coconut milk that I really like so gonna give that a try in my coffee.

    1. Hi Tori! I don’t do anything fancy with the Brewer’s yeast. I probably take 1 Tbs each day, or a few Tbs every few days. The taste is definitely odd (it’s often used as a vegan replacement for cheese!) but I don’t mind it too much. That said, I don’t masticate it or anything 🙂 I do swirl it up with broth and swig it down sometimes, but it doesn’t dissolve so it can settle at the bottom of the glass. So what I’ve been doing lately (which is kinda weird) is just putting a spoonful in my mouth, then taking a careful sip of water with the BY still in my mouth…mixing/swishing it around…then swallow. It’s the fastest and most efficient way, it seems, but definitely the strangest.
      You can get capsules of the CLO/BO blend…look for those for now! Also…try grating the frozen organs into chili or into the ground beef for meatballs. You’ll never taste them 🙂

  52. I am in need of some serious skin care assistance!
    I have had acne since I was 10 years old. I am now 25, and acne is still a part of my life. There are about a million blackheads all over my face, with whiteheads here, there, and everywhere. Most of the acne is on my cheeks, nose, and jawline. I have used every oral and topical acne medication one could think of. The result was always the same: dry, burning, sensitive skin with acne still present. Around March of 2005 I started using birth control. That seemed to clear up my backcne, but my face was still problematic. At some point I started using Proactive; which seemed to help my face but not my pocket.
    In September 2010 I did my first Whole 30. I try eating Paleo as much as possible, but can get off track every now and then. In June of 2011 I went off birth control. In February of 2012 I stopped using Proactive, and tried using tea tree oil instead. My face then became the worst it has ever been! I was so embarrassed to even show my face in public, that I considered going on Accutane. Luckily, I decided not to follow through. So, I went back on Proactive until I could find another solution.
    To my luck I purchased the Practical Paleo cookbook and discovered the 21 Day Sugar Detox on paleOMG. I started listening to the Balanced Bites podcast, and utilizing some of the suggestions you gave to others. I first started with the oil cleaning method; using a 30%:70% castor oil:sunflower seed oil blend. After doing this for a week or two I still had acne all over my face. I added in coconut oil twice a day; after the oil cleaning method and in the morning under my makeup. This seemed to help a little. However, I still have blackheads all over my face and whiteheads on my cheeks and jawline.
    A few days into the oil cleaning method I started the December 21 Day Sugar Detox at Level 3. At the beginning of the detox I started using Green Pasture’s FCLO/BO blend capsules. I have never felt so good in my life!!! However, my acne still remained strong.
    Now for my questions:
    I take two FCLO/BO blend capsules a day. I saw you made a comment that portions don’t really matter, but is 2 capsules a day enough?
    As I mentioned earlier, I wear makeup. I’ve always used general drugstore makeup…that contains gluten. What makeup would you suggest using? Someone suggested using Arbonne since it’s gluten free.
    I’ve been stalking the Primal Life Organics page like crazy, but I cannot afford the “Banished and Beyond Package for Acne”. Are there other alternatives to this product? Or should I just try and save up?
    Liz, I know your book on skin care is coming out soon. I cannot wait until it does!!! I look forward to it and the day that I can look in the mirror and have clear, beautiful skin. Thank you for everything you have done and continue to do! #1 Fan 🙂

    1. I think you will LOVE the skin care book! It’s honestly as good as a nutritional therapy consult, but with a much lower price tag 🙂 If you don’t find what you need, of course, let me know!
      If I felt I needed extra nutrients, I wouldn’t hesitate to double my dose of CLO/BO for a bit.
      I use Caren Minerals makeup or 100 Percent Pure. Caren Minerals is available on Amazon and there will be a discount code in the guide!

  53. Hey Liz…question for ya. Recently purchased the fermented clo from green pastures, but it’s not the butter oil blend. Do you think it will still benifit me in the skin department? I feel like I should go through it before ordering the other just based on price. What are your thoughts?
    Thanks for your time and LOVE LOVE LOVE your podcasts with Diane. You often have me cracking up : )

  54. Hi Liz,
    I woke up to small tiny red bumps on my arms yesterday..They are somehow itchy and it’s getting annoying. Any idea what’s those? How to get rid of them and also stop the itch naturally?
    Thanks~~~ 🙂

    1. Hi Marilyn! It all depends on the cause. Did you use something new? Any time you try a new product or item, spot test it on your inner arm and wait 24 hours. Some people don’t react well to coconut oil at first. Could be something internal or could be irritation from bacteria or critters that made it into your sheets. Could even be a reaction to laundry soap or fabric softener, if you use those. All depends on what’s going on! If you’re uncomfortable be sure to see a professional 🙂

      1. Thanks for the reply! I suspected it may be due to the dry cold weather, as my skin has gotten much drier lately(except my face, which is still fairly oily in certain areas). By the way, is Green Pastures’ Beauty Balm suitable to be used on somewhat oily and acne prone skin?

        1. I LOVE the Beauty balm for all purposes. I wear it to bed at night quite often (helps me remember to sleep on my back!)
          If you can spring for it, have a look at Primal Life Organics’ Banished line. It’s pretty spectacular. I also love oil cleansing for anyone with oily skin. And humidifiers for the winter!

  55. Thanks!! 🙂 Just wondering, which brand of humidifier do you use? Also, I am keen on drinking aloe vera juice. Have you tried before? What’s your say on this? What brand do you recommend?

    1. Hi Marilyn! Aloe vera juice can be helpful, but it’s not something I recommend to EVERYONE just because it can be really powerful, and some people’s systems aren’t primed for its effects. That’s something I leave folks to explore on their own 🙂 That’s been my experience, anyway, although there may be folks who disagree, and if it works for you, go for it! There was a brand exhibiting at the Weston Price conference several years back, but I can’t remember who they were.
      This is the humidifier I use: http://bit.ly/HumidifierUnit

      1. Thanks for the reply! 🙂
        I just finished reading your Skintervention book! Its superrrr duperrrr awesome!! Very grateful to have those valuable information!! Thanks 😉
        Just wondering, when it comes to kefir grains, which one is better : milk or water kefir grains? I suppose coconut milk can be used instead of milk?

        1. I’m so happy you liked it! That’s like my baby, so it means a great deal to me 🙂 As far as Kefir, it just depends on which you want to make. Yes, you can do coconut kefir too, but that’s USUALLY done with coconut water. You can do it with milk, though – read this post first! http://www.passionatehomemaking.com/2010/03/how-to-make-coconut-milk-kefir.html
          I would go with the coconut milk I listed in the guide, since it’s guar gum free!

  56. Okay, thanks for the info!!! 🙂
    By the way, I have several questions after reading your book :
    – Do you have any other recommendation for body oil/body lotion that’s suitable for body acne, apart from coconut oil?
    – I realized the red bumps on my arms might be Keratosis Pilaris(and yes, credit to your book!!!!). What topical application is suitable?
    – FYI, I have been consuming about 1 tsp of Green Pastures Cod Liver Oil and Butter Oil Blend daily for some time now. Do you think it’s feasible to increase the dosage since I have body acne?

    1. You can use any oil for body acne – they’re ALL anti-fungal/anti-bac to a degree. I would probably either add a drop of spot treatment oil (one of the ones I recommend) or put the topical MSM from Dr. Ron’s in a spray bottle and spray daily. The Tallow balm from Vintage Tradition would work great too.
      Arm KP: the Beauty Balm (contains coconut oil) or tallow balm.
      Body Acne: I think patience is key, and make sure you’re using non-toxic laundry soap and NEVER conventional fabric softener. Also MSM spray as I mentioned, and I would also do 2x/day spritz with Apple Cider Vinegar-based toner.
      I double-dosed my first bottle of CLO, FWIW, but I find it’s more helpful with overall skin quality than body eruptions. If your experience is different, let me know!

      1. What do you think of sweet almond oil for body acne? Hmm..guess for now maybe I would try coconut oil. Thanks a lot btw! You rockkkkk 🙂

        1. Haha, when it comes to skin care oils you just have to see what your skin “likes” the most! The benefit of oils like coconut, olive, tallow are that they don’t have to be stabilized with vitamin e…almost all skin care oils are, which is NOT a bad thing at all but if you’re being a huge purist, that’s something to know. I have sweet almond and grapeseed in my bathroom cabinet, simply because my skin seems to really like them. They’re more processed, and are both technically by-products and I would NEVER cook with them, but I honestly believe they’re fine for skin care.

  57. Hi Liz. I love your Skintervention guide! What an incredible resource. I have a few questions I’m hoping you can help me with… 😀
    My naturopath has me doing seeds/oils to balance my hormones. She says to do fish oil for half the cycle, and evening primrose oil the other half. I’m wondering what your thoughts are on the efficacy of only taking the FCLO/butter blend for half of the month… I kind of want to keep taking it every day, or I feel like I’m wasting it and not benefiting from it as much as I could be.
    I’m still getting breakouts high on my temples and in my hairline. I wipe off all the oil after OCM. Maybe they’re from shampoo? Or maybe I am moisturizing (grapeseed/jojoba) too much in that area. Any thoughts?
    Thank you very much!

    1. Hi there! Thanks for buying the guide, I’m so happy you’re liking it!
      I would do what your naturopath tells you for now. I’m not a huge fan of excessive EPA/DHA (isolated fish oil) long-term, but I’m sure your Naturo is using it for a reason, and it can have some short-term utility. FCLO contains a bit of EPA/DHA, but it may be less than your Naturo wants you to use. Maybe you could do half the fish oil and replace the other half with the FCLO/Butter Oil?
      Keep the FCLO in the fridge and it will last a long time 🙂
      You could also get your vitamin A and D from liver and sun exposure, respectively…if you’re going to hold off on the FCLO until after the course of unsats your Naturo has you on.
      As far as the breakouts, it could definitely be from shampoo irritating the area. It’s really unlikely that the oil itself would cause breakouts…any time I’m home, I absolutely saturate my face with oil and it never causes breakouts! Make sure the oils are organic, and just to be sure, you could try other oils to see what works for you. It may also be a temporary affect of the changes you’re making. Keep in touch!

  58. Hi Liz,
    Love your post! I read your Skintervention guide two months ago when I began Paleo nutrition. I too suffer from acne and have a nasty hormonal imbalance. I’ve been using the oil cleansing method, and baking soda, ACV and coconut oil for body care… I love them!! After reading skintervention, I promptly got on the superfoods you suggested. Fermented cod liver oil, bone broth, brewers yeast, and fermented veg.
    Unfortunately my acne has not improved at all, in fact it has been worse. Is my body still going through a detox period? How long does it usually take to see improvement? Any advice you can offer would be terrific!
    Thanks again for all your research and blogs!

    1. Thank you for buying the guide, Marty! It all depends on YOUR individual terrain. Sometimes 2 months isn’t enough; sometimes there’s something else going on. If people are losing weight, hormonal swings are common. If people have changed or ditched medications, that can change what happens as well. The super-foods and topical oils will NOT “cause” acne, but as you know hormonal shifts can! Without knowing much more about your story (what’s changed, where the acne is, etc) it’s hard to give more insight! Would you be willing to submit the question to the podcast? http://balancedbites.com/submit-a-question
      I would focus on digestive support, particularly the liver and the gut!

  59. Hi Liz. This is an interesting post. Would you recommend this routine for trying to heal a new scar more quickly? If not, do you have any suggestions for scar healing? Thank you!

    1. Hi Caitlin! This routine can definitely help with faster healing, although I’d also focus on getting a good source of zinc (meat, oysters, make sure digestion is good so it’s well-absorbed) and using my version of the oil cleansing method. I have a post here about OCM, and if you need more help let me know! If you want to get really in-depth, definitely think about my Skintervention Guide 🙂

  60. THANK YOU so much for this post. I love that 2 years later, you are still responding to people’s inquiries. I’m just wondering if you’re still taking the CLO as a daily supplement, and if it’s still helping your skin remain clear? I just bought the Green Pastures brand, but in the capsule form. I’ve read various things about dosage. Some sites even mentioned taking up to 10 capsules a day in order to get the recommended 10,000U of Vitamin A. Do you know how much I should be taking so that it’s still safe but helping with acne? Thanks!

    1. Hi Erin! Thanks for the nice words 🙂 I’m still taking the CLO. I try to remember to take it at least 4-5 days per week, but I’m not too stringent about it! I consider it a super-food (if you have the Skintervention Guide you may already know that so I apologize for repeating myself!) so it’s really one of those things that I treat like a food rather than a supplement. I try to eat it every day, but it’s not the end of the world if I miss a few days. I also think 10 caps a day is totally fine – the vitamins A and D are in proper proportion to one another and so any risk of toxicity is basically nonexistent IMO…especially if you get a little sun when you can. I don’t generally take that high a dose, just because it’s an expensive product!

      1. Hi Liz, I gagged down an entire bottle of the Chocolate CLO/butter Oil (nose plugged and over time of course), but when the Coconut Oil/CLO/Butter Oil came out and they claimed the taste wasn’t bad I jumped for joy!! And the good news is that they were right – you can’t taste the CLO at all. I assume it’s equally as good nutrition wise as the other but just thought I’d ask anyway and I apologize if this has been addressed previously.

  61. Maybe I’ve just looked it over, but I see that you’ve recommended three different brands of sauerkraut (and it looks like Picklelicious possibly doesn’t make it anymore). What sets these brands apart? How can I tell when I’ve come across a quality brand of sauerkraut?

    1. Hi Tara! I think the gold standard for Kraut is trying (if you can) to get it locally. That will help (I think, although I have no proof) you get that unique bacterial imprint from YOUR environment. Try to buy kraut that’s not pasteurized, and absolutely no ingredients but cabbage and water (and maybe some salt). I will be talking more about this soon. Stay tuned!

  62. Hello! I love this post and revisit it often. I am in an ongoing struggle with acne that I’ve had since I was about 15 (I’m 29 now). I’ve been paleo for about two years now and gone on and off an anti-inflammatory diet/Paleo AIP for the past year with OK results. I got a flu shot about 2 months ago after going back and forth, and I highly regret it because it caused a crazy inflammatory response on my face. Anyway, I’m out of brewer’s yeast and went to order from Lewis Labs and it appears they are no longer growing it! Is there any other brand you recommend? Thanks!

    1. Hey Samantha! I checked the site and saw that they have the buds and flakes still available for purchase, just not the powder. It sounds like they are going to introduce their own similar product soon since the import product is no longer produced, and it will be made with non-gmo sugar beets just as before. Here’s the site: http://lewislabsdirect.com/collections/our-products
      It seems like your system is just perpetually on high alert. Have you tried meditation? It’s one of the only things I’ve found that helps calm a system that’s so responsive. I always like to hear how others do with it. 🙂 Keep in touch!

      1. Hi Liz,
        I recently discovered your blog—love it! Quick question for you re FCLO: did your acne worsen before it improved? FCLO was recommended to me not only for acne, but also for infertility. I had seen great improvement with my acne once I cut out dairy, gluten, processed foods and began to incorporate more whole foods a la Weston Price—nearly the same regimen your mention above. However, I started FCLO (Green Pasture brand) just one week ago and immediately flared on my back and chin. Did this happen to you at all? I’ve heard good things, so would love to stick with it if this is just an initial phase.

        1. Hey Molly! Thanks so much for reading and for the kind words. As far as FCLO – no, my acne didn’t worsen before it got better but I know others have had this happen. There are a few reasons that might be happening for you, so see if you think any of these apply.
          1) “detox.” This is a word that doesn’t get a lotta respect, but it’s a real thing! You could very well have stimulated some more effective detox over the course of enhancing your nutrition. This should improve relatively quickly. If it doesn’t, then you may need some extra support to facilitate detox pathways. In contrast…
          2) it could be a sensitivity to salicylates, or fermentation products, which is likely an indication of a need for gut healing. Since you saw improvement from switching your diet, there was probably some gut healing needed! Different people have different sensitivities. They can resolve over time.
          SO…depending on your instincts, you can move forward as you see fit. If you think you need to pull the FCLO for now, some liver and egg yolks and seafood for vitamins A, D, and appropriate amounts of Omega 3/6/9 fats is a great thing to emphasize! I hope that all helps!

  63. Wow that was unusual. I juwt wrote an very long comment but after I clicked
    submit my comment didn’t shopw up. Grrrr… well I’m not writing all that over again.
    Anyways, just wanted to say superb blog!

  64. Does your website have a contact page? I’m having a tough time locating it but, I’d like to send
    you an e-mail. I’ve got some recommendations for your blog you might be interested in hearing.
    Either way, great blog and I look forward to seeing it expand over time.


    1. Everyone is different! But it’s possible. If you’re still having issues, it might be time to look at an intensive gut-healing or autoimmune protocol, using a low FODMAP diet! The Paleo Approach by Sarah Ballantyne is a phenomenal resource for this. Keep me updated!

  66. what would you say to those on an extremely limited budget. Is there any hope or help if you can’t change your diet much?

    1. Ruth – take small steps. There is hope! But you have to look at it as a journey you’re committed to staying on. As you begin to make small shifts in your diet, you will find ways to shift your budget too! Don’t lose heart 🙂

  67. Hi Liz, I just recently heard about Brewer’s Yeast in aiding acne-prone skin. As the brand you recommend is not currently available, I was wondering if you know yet of any others that would be beneficial. I found one by TwinLab…I’m intrigued by this product and how it can help acne when applied to the face or taken internally. I’ve struggled with acne for many years now, and being an adult sufferer is very discouraging. The thing that is frustrating for me is that I have been eating clean for about a year now and try to do all things natural for my face but still have breakouts, sometimes seeming to start when I do switch over to a natural skin care regimen and cut out the store products. I am currently still using the 2 topical antibiotic creams that my dermatologist recommended, which ultimately cleared up my acne a year ago. I try to stop using it every now and again and strictly use natural remedies but as soon as it seems my acne starts to get out of control, I go back to using them. I know you’ve been through this too and I really hope I can see similar results with applying the same methods you use for myself. I’m glad I came across your website.

    1. Hi Amy! Unfortunately, I haven’t found anything comparable. The OLD Brewer’s Yeast from Lewis Labs had around 140% DV Chromium, and I haven’t seen any others over 20%. Since I believe its anti-acneic effects are mostly due to this chromium content along with its B vitamins and nucleic acid (acting synergystically), I just haven’t found a good substitute. If I were you, and my acne continued to return when I discontinued using topical antibiotics, I would experiment with using a topical probiotic http://www.piphealthyproducts.com/Rejuvinate_your_skin_s/39.htm as well as some prebiotic and probiotic supplements (taken orally) to work on my bodily bacteria. (I recommend a few of those in the Skintervention Guide, which might help you as well!) I hope to develop an anti-acne topical probiotic in the near future, but that’s going to take time. I hope I’m able to help you in some way!

    1. Hey Jess! Unfortunately, while I’m sure it’s healthful, the other one had 140% DV chromium and this one just has around 10%. Still not quite what it used to be 🙁 I’m not giving up just yet, though!

      1. Please announce when you have found a replacement! Thanks for everything you are doing! You certainly rocks 😀

  68. I too noticed major changes in my skin after changing my diet. I also see a difference since oil cleansing. When I eat more probiotics/ fermented veggies I see a drastic change. Haven’t tried green pasture cod liver oil yet. My complexion is still rather see through, I have thin pale redish skin. Will the cod liver oil help with a smoother complextion?

    1. Becca, if I were you I’d give the Corganic.com non-fermented CLO or Ratfish Liver Oil a try. I’ve definitely noticed my complexion improving with those!

  69. Hi Liz,
    I see that this is an old post, so I hope that you are still replying to comments! I was wondering if you saw a relationship between sun exposure and acne flare-ups, and if so what would you recommend to use as a natural sun screen?

    1. Hi Katie! Exposing the sun on the FACE can cause oxidation of sebum and therefore inflammation, but some people report their skin clearing up in the sun. So it really depends on the person! I advocate sun on the extremities (arms, legs) for vitamin D and protecting your face since it tends to burn more quickly and be a bit more sensitive anyway. I use a big-brimmed hat and Badger Balm when necessary.

  70. So so many comments to read through! But I wanted to add my own 0.02 this was a great article and I have had success in the past with clearing my trouble acne. Mine is brought on by soy- and after 4 years of a heavy soy (I was vegetarian) diet and many trips home from the dermatologist with new,stronger, scarier creams, it finally dawned on me. At this point I’m time, I don’t remember exactly how I whittled it down to soy- but boy do I know now. One unfortunate thing I’ve found recently is that some whole food prenatals have fermented soy in them. I was trying to figure out why my face was breaking out so bad, and as soon as I stopped taking them (I’m not pregnant yet) my skin started to clear… Do you have any recommendations? I’m only preparing at the moment for pregnancy song have some time to search. -I also wanted to add one of my all time favorite skin treayments is a honey mask. I like to use local honey. I smear it on my face after cleansing and just let it sit until I’m ready to take it off. Makes my skin gorgeous! I love it!

    1. I will dig around for a good prenatal without fermented soy! I do think the Seeking Health prenatal is great (it’s got methylated folate) but it’s more standard, although of great quality, but not whole foods-based.
      I LOVE honey!

    1. Kate, there’s also the Rosita “Extra Virgin” CLO from Corganic.com, but it’s also expensive. You can definitely try something like Nordic Naturals and see how you do. You could also just start with something inexpensive, like adding liver to your diet, to see how far that takes you before spending more money!

  71. Have you ever heard of cystic acne and small bumps from the OCM? If diet and lifestyle are in line with the guidelines you mention in your ebook?

    1. Hey Megan – sadly, with any regimen, there are outliers and people who don’t respond well. (This was me with several mainstream acne treatments). Please don’t feel you have to continue doing something if it’s not helping you – it CAN happen. Let me know if you need some ideas for safe products that can help. They might not be as “natural” but I do know of a few products that can help that have safe, although not “natural” ingredients.

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