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How 2 Years of Dairy Free Affected My Skin

Updated: Jul 26, 2022

By Mya Rudolph

I stopped eating dairy for 2 years and this is how it affected my skin:

After struggling with acne for many of my teenage years, I began

experimenting with my diet to see how it would affect my skin. I kept hearing

that cutting out dairy can help diminish acne and decided it was worth a

shot. Leaving behind pizza and ice cream was difficult, but I believe the end

results were worth it…

The science behind it

Dairy is a food group that contains all products made with milk. This includes

cheese, yogurt, butter, and cream. Milk is made of the natural sugar lactose

which many individuals cannot break down properly. Having lactose

intolerance is associated with stomach pains and even acne breakouts. Many

people also breakout from eating dairy because the protein casein, found in

milk, can sometimes adversely affect our body's natural hormones and lead

to hormonal acne.

My experience

I cut out dairy completely in my junior year of high school after a friend of

mine recommended it to me after it helped her feel less bloated and cleared

up her skin. At first, it seemed impossible to give this up as most of my

favorite foods contained dairy. However, I found myself enjoying some of the

dairy-free alternatives even more, such as almond and oat milk in my coffee

and cereal. After staying consistent with this diet for a few months I saw

results in my skin, I had fewer breakouts and inflammation.

Easing back into it

After two years, I felt like my skin had been completely transformed and I

grew accustomed to the dairy-free lifestyle. However, as I entered college and

began living in a tiny dorm room with no kitchen, I decided to ease back into

eating dairy. At first I started incorporated greek yogurt, parmesan, and

mozzarella cheese back into my diet and did not notice any breakouts or

reactions. I did notice that whey protein powder caused me to have some

acne so I still avoid this and opt for a plant based option.

It’s all about balance

Now, I do not restrict my diet in any way but I try to avoid dairy and eat

intuitively when I can. Cutting out dairy was not something I planned on

sticking with my whole life but I did have a very positive experience with it

and think anyone struggling with acne should try it out!

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