Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Sugar case study: Jody

Jody came in to see me after reading my book [Timeless Skin] and realizing we lived in the same city. She is a 23-year-old with problem/acne skin. When she first walked in, it was obvious she had skin troubles; the whole bottom half of her face was red from blemishes and sensitive, irritated, skin.

As I always do, I asked her a series of questions ranging from what her skin care routine consisted of to how much water she drank, what if any vitamins and herbs she might take, and what type of exercise she was committed to. She was aware of sugar in her diet, and in fact Jody said she had just given up putting two teaspoons of sugar in each of the 2-3 cups of coffee she drank daily. That she stopped this daily sugar habit is something to be congratulated. And because is was a recent change, her skin hadn’t had enough time to clear up significantly.

What Jody hadn’t given up (yet) was a sugary cereal she was eating every morning for breakfast. At this point, she wasn’t able to make the switch to more non-sugary breakfast foods. She felt she would have to get up earlier in order to have time to make a good breakfast, and she didn’t want to be late for work. This is understandable, but I also believe eating a healthy breakfast can be accomplished without taking too much time. I encouraged Jody to consider changing and to incorporate making a healthy breakfast just one day per week to start, and see how that went. I think taking small, baby steps leads to permanent changes.

Jody left my office with some challenges in terms of changing her dietary habits—even more than she already had. Without getting more sugar contributors out of her diet, her skin problems would persist. I encouraged Jody to realize that when she was ready to commit to a more complete dietary change, bigger improvements would happen. I told her to remember every time she ate sugar, she increased her chances of breaking out.

Taking a more subtle approach rather than something more drastic may work better for you in terms of eliminating sugar from your diet. Even small steps, over time, can produce big changes. First, set your sights on where you want to be, and then take small steps, focus, and attain your goal. You absolutely can reduce or eliminate sugar from your diet; you just need to make a plan. Once your skin starts clearing up, you will have the impetus you need to complete your goal.

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