Hi. I know this is long, so I've underlined the main points for those of you who are pressed for time and just want to skim.
Five months ago I had a frightening middle of the night experience that I believe was due to an Acne Diet I was on. I woke up feeling nauseated and chilled, and stumbled to the bathroom toilet, unsure whether to sit or kneel (if you know what I mean). I sat. By this time I was shaking and sweating, my bowels were loose, and I had the strangest buzzing/tingling feeling all over - it felt as if the blood flowing through me was ice cold. I felt awful.
My husband woke up just in time to hear a crash. He entered the bathroom to find me on the floor in front of the sink, half dressed. I don't even remember leaving the toilet. I roused as he lifted me up and returned me to the toilet, where I mumbled unintelligibly until I passed out again moments later on my husband's shoulder. Eventually I went back to bed, exhausted, and fell asleep until morning.
I'm not diabetic. We thought perhaps I had a fierce "24 hr" virus, though I felt completely fine by midmorning. Or maybe it was just some fluke, though very odd since I'm normally an extremely healthy individual.
It may seem odd, but in retrospect, I really believe this episode was due to an Anti Acne Diet I was on. In November my mother introduced me to the writings of Dr. Perricone, a dermatologist who espouses an anti-inflammatory diet, which basically means low sugar, high antioxidant, high protein, "good" fats, etc. I've followed it with moderation ever since. I eat lots of colorful fruits and vegies, meats, beans, nuts, whole oats, barley and dairy and I avoid sugary foods, including those starchy ones like potatoes and wheat products that break down into sugars.
When I started the diet, I began with the recommended 3 day "jumpstart". It was a pretty monotonous: salmon, romaine, fruit & nuts... for the most part. At the end of day 3, I celebrated with a nice big brownie with icing (I know, I know ) at bedtime. That night I woke up and experienced what I explained above.
I've never had an experience like that before in my life. I personally think it was a sugar coma thing triggered by the diet. It's like my body had de-conditioned in 3 days and could no longer take a good dose of sugar. Wierd.
I've tried to shrug it off, but twice since then I've had a 3 AM or so awakening with similar symptoms, minus the delirium and passing out. And in both cases, I had indulged in something particularly sweet at bedtime.
Have any of you tried this diet? Have you had the same reaction? My acne's been so much better, I hate to give it up, but this sugar response has me a little scared. I'm normally as healthy as a horse, with fine blood profiles. Any insight? Advice? I'm all ears.
interesting post. Could you share a little bit of the info that the books contains because i was thinking of buying it. I know he says avoid foods that would normally be considered safe, like bananas, peas, carrots, ... what else is on this list of 'avoids' which 'healthy people' might be eating without realising??
Well, let's see. Of course we avoid the obvious junk foods, but other foods that also can cause an inflamatory (high glycemic) reaction are: Bananas, Mangos, Papayas, Cereals (except old fashioned, NON instant oatmeal), Corn (this includes chips, pop corn, corn syrup...), Peas, Carrots, Potatoes, Sweet Potatoes, Dried fruits, Egg rolls, Wheat Flour products (crackers, bagels, pretzels, croutons... & whole wheat is a culprit just like white), Tortillas, Pastas, Rice, Fried food, Hot dogs, Fruit juices, Granola, Hard cheese (except Romano & Parmesan), Margarine, Cream Cheese, Ice cream, Frozen yogurt, Italian ice, Sherbet, Pudding, Molasses, Honey.
Seems like a long list, doesn't it? But there's plenty you can eat. I substitute cooked Barley for pasta, and whole oat groats for rice, and my family doesn't even mind! It's hard to totally part with bread, so we do still use some but now we have 1/2 sandwiches with twice the meat of a normal whole sandwich.
I don't expect my family to follow the diet as closely as I do, but I've gone through the Perricone menus and distilled them to this easy to live with list for their health, which I've posted on my refrigerator... HAVE YOU HAD YOUR DAILY?: Eggs, berries, melon, yogurt, nuts, seeds, salad. This is, of course, in addition to the other foods they eat daily, but they think of these foods as treats and are happy to eat them.
I recommend you check the books out from the library before you buy, that's what I did. The one specific to Acne has the best recipes. And if you buy - get them on eBay, barely read.
I am suprised he includes sweet potatoes and mango on the avoid list, yet includes eggs and cheese and melon in the include list. Does he explain why we should avoid sweet potatoes or does he just give the umbrella explanation of 'they are inflammatory'?
Other acne plans ive read say mango's are great,
and sweet potatoes are excellent, because they have a low GL and are both very nutritous. As for melon, well, isnt that higher on the GL?
Also, eat eggs and cheese??? blimey, maybe i wont buy the book. Doesnt he know dairy is bad for acne and cooked eggs are inflammatory and should be eaten sparingly?
It actually sounds completely reasonable that you had this reaction to sugar. In fact, sugar is overconsumed in our society. The average American consumes 150lbs per year. By taking the sugar out of your system for a few days, you gave your body a chance to "breathe." I mean, you blood sugar levels were able to stabilize. You may not get those sick feelings everyday, but the sugar is affecting your body in other ways (maybe not noticeable, at first). Overconsumption of sugar will cause health problems down the road if you are not careful. What you may be is REACTIVE Hypo-glycemic. The only way to check your blood sugar completely and correctly is by having a 6-7 hour glucose test. My personal experience was this... when I was 22, I began getting vertigo. I was soooooo scared. It was debilitating and frightening. I went to the best Doctors. They did blood work and everything came out fine. (even my glucose...interesting!) After no answer, they sent me to an ENT specialist. I took test, did the whole 9 yards, they thought it was Meniere's syndrome, but could not figure it out. Finally, a friend recommended a Doctor who she claimed was a "Miracle Worker." I went to him. He did a 7 hour glucose test on me to discover that I am REACTIVE hypoglycemic. Guess what... I control my sugar now AND I get no vertigo! I would have never guessed...and honestly, I thought the man was crazy when he told me the foods to avoid.
Look into this though... to prevent any future problems. Good Luck.
There are 2 reasons that dairy may aggravate acne. The first, if your dairy is NOT organic, the cows are pumped with hormones which, in turn, can logically affect your hormones. But, if you do organic dairy... you should be safe! UNLESS, and here is the second, you are allergic to dairy. Some allergic reactions to dairy may cause acne.
Hi Dave. Perricone bases his food recommendations upon how they score in the Glycemic Index. I THINK I remember he uses 50 as his cutoff. (BTW, WATERmelon is not recommended). A valuable tip he gives is to eat your protein first. It helps your body assimilate the natural sugars in the rest of your meal.
Thanks, EternalBliss17, for your input. Reactive hypo-glycemic is a new term for me. I guess I do need to schedule an apt. with my family practitioner. In the meantime... what would you recommend I do/eat if I have another night waking like the others?
Last edited by FUNintheSUN; 04-14-2005 at 07:18 PM.
Based on the responses I'm getting, I will definitely be seeing a doctor. My mom and my sister are both nurses, but when I described that first experience to them they were fascinated but didn't think it was anything to worry about - just a fluke. But now I'm not so sure.
Last edited by FUNintheSUN; 04-14-2005 at 07:37 PM.
actually i think it's called hypoglycemic shock? one of my professors was telling me about as he was lecturing me for scarfing down my lunch b/c i hadn't eaten all day. He said you have to keep your blood sugar levels maintained otherwise when you do eat or have a bunch of sugar all at once then you get the symptoms you described and pass out basically. so that might have been the reason why. it's not to say that the diet is bad for you, maybe more so the brownie was! haha
Have you heard differently? All ive been doing is weighing up the evidence from as much research as my brain can handle, and the majority of sources suggest eggs should be eaten sparingly, if at all- for the same reason that cooked meats should be eaten sparingly- because as you know the cooked protein is recognised as foreign, which provokes a mild allergic reaction.
Why is perricone basing his diet around GI and using 50 as a cut off point? Surly he should base it around GL!?
G. load takes into account amount. ie, 1 raisen= very high GI but very low GL.
So are you saying that perricone says to avoid peas and carrots on no other grounds than their high GI?? - even when a handful of peas has a low GL and therefore ultimately poses little threat to blood sugar levels.
If that is true then Perricone is not as accurate as it could be.
So, the Perricone diet may have been a good thing for you. It may have helped you unravel some other things that may cause or add to why you break out. Id recommend going to a "good" Doctor. Some will brush off your issue. It is important to go to a Dr. that has experience with these cases. Where do you live? I can give you some recommendations, if you d like OR you can call a Dr.'s office of a Dr. that I would HIGHLY recommend and he could give you a referral for your location.
Thanks for the offer EB17. I live in Central FL. My husband is military, so I'm planning to be seen on base soon. But if I find that they're just not listening to me or I feel they're missing something, I'll take up up on your offer. Thanks!