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Low Sugar Diet and Black Currant Oil Cleared Complexion

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Q. I just read the column on milk of magnesia for teen acne. I am allergic to benzoyl peroxide and salicylic acid products so I tried black currant oil capsules for my menopausal acne. They cleared my skin up quickly.

With this essential fatty acid, my skin looks great without the use of harsh chemicals. If black currant oil capsules worked for me, they might work for anyone with an acne problem related to hormone and diet. I also cut way down on sugar, white flour, white rice and pasta after reading about the negative effects sugar has on the skin and the body.

A. Your dietary approach makes great sense. People who eat very few refined carbohydrates (sugar, white flour, white rice and pasta) do not experience rapid elevations in blood sugar. When glucose rises quickly it stimulates insulin release, which in turn may affect other growth factors and hormonal changes that increase the risk for skin blemishes (Archives of Dermatology, Dec., 2002). Black currant seed oil is rich in gamma-linolenic acid, which has anti-inflammatory activity.

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I have taken 500 mg. daily of black Currant oil (70mg GLA and 52 mg ALA) for about 6-8 years for PMS mainly and for joint inflammation, with good success. I am 53 years old now and peri-menopausal and my cycle became irregular about 9 mos ago. I am not experiencing any of the other usual menopausal symptoms fortunately. I would like to continue to take the black currant oil to help regulate my hormones, but I recently found an article on-line that does not recommend taking this supplement for more than 3 years. Am I causing myself harm to be taking it so long? Thank you for your time.

PEOPLE'S PHARMACY RESPONSE: WE WERE NOT ABLE TO FIND ANY REASON WHY THERE WOULD BE A THREE-YEAR LIMIT ON ITS USE.

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