Today’s post is something a little more personal than usual programming but I thought it would be a interesting topic to write about and share.
About 3 months ago, I decided that after nearly 10 years of being on the contraceptive pill, I no longer wanted to pop a pill every day containing oodles of fake hormones. I’d come across a few articles including this one by Gala Darling which made me question if I really knew how much the pill was affecting me.
So, I decided to just stop taking it… a month before I moved across to the other side of the world. Stupid timing, I know but once I have a idea in my head, there’s no shaking it. The big life changes that coincided have meant that it’s a little hard to tell the difference now that I’m off it- for instance, I feel happier (not that I wasn’t before) but that is also probably because we are loving our new life in London. One think I definitely have noticed is that I’m not feeling so tired all the time!
There has been a downside to it all and that’s my skin. I had acne as a teenager and while it had started to calm down a little by the time I went on the pill at 17, it significantly cleared up once I was on it. I had hoped that by now, I would have outgrown the pimples completely and wouldn’t have to deal with it but knew it would be possibility when I decided to stop.
Well, those pimples came back with a vengeance and I was faced with the worst skin I’ve had since I was 14/15! It got worse after the move to London and I did some reading about how the ‘hard’ water (containing lots of minerals) can be bad for your skin and hair and so I bought a shower filter. That helped a little but I was still really struggling and it definitely knocked my confidence a little especially since I was getting booked for modelling jobs!
After weeks of trying to do all the right things and lots of googling, I asked for advice from a small Facebook group I’ve been in for years. Many of them suggested cutting out dairy which was something I’d read about but was avoiding because, well, I do love my cheese!
But, I decided to give it a go. The improvement was astonishing. In as little as 24 hours, everything was starting to fade and within a week I was exclaiming to Matt ‘look at how great my skin looks!!!’ about 3 times a day. It’s now been just over two weeks and while I’m not completely zit free, it’s a 80% improvement on what it was. When I think about it, it all makes sense- when you are on the pill, it’s working to stabilize your hormones but cows milk and products made from it are full of hormones. So, I’m assuming that when I came off the pill, the dairy affected me more as there wasn’t something working to stabilize it all.
What’s it meant for my diet? I’ve stopped drinking coffee completely (I was a 1-3 cup a day gal) and switched to black teas. Instead of my usual yogurt and granola for breakfast, I now have Almond Milk with Oats but have also just bought some soy yogurt to try. I now eat dark chocolate if I need a sweet fix and because cheese is probably my favourite food, I’ve got a lacto-free cheese that I’ll have small portions of or choose buffalo cheese.
The switch has also meant that I’m just generally eating healthier too! I’m hoping that I’ll be able to have a big bowl of creamy pasta or cheese and crackers every once and a while without major ramifications but for now I’m trying to be reasonably strict while my skin sorts itself out.
I’m really happy to have been able to find a solution to the problem that didn’t mean taking medication or going back on the pill. I can’t believe how fast the results were and am so glad I decided to try it. I wish I’d taken a photo of my skin at it’s worst so that I could show you a comparison.
If you are struggling with similar issue, it could be worth a try for you too! We are all different and acne occurs for many reasons but at least there’s no harm in trying and it’s better than some of the crazy acne medication out there!