Managing Adult Acne & Your Diet: Products & Food to help

Let’s face it: acne sucks. That wasn’t just an attempt at a cliche, but my honest feelings.

Ever since I was a teenager, I was a sufferer of acne. Still am. Adult acne is very real and unless you have the insurance of a goddess, sometimes it’s not always easy to keep it at bay.

Overall, adult acne is usually due to an influx of hormones that can be inflamed by stress, chemical make-up or simply your diet. There are a variety of sources that tout different ways to ‘cure’ it or manage it. 

Personally, I’ve seen quite a few dermatologists (which you’ll need to do during your meatless journey, trust me and to determine your remedies) and used nearly every acne system on the market…It was frustrating and expensive. 

If I ever thought my skin was finally clearing up, that one HORRIBLE breakout ruined my esteem or any progress I felt I had made. In my opinion, why was I paying to have everything ‘clear it out’ and then start over until I ran out of said supply? I still had to go out in public after all. 

Out of the things that were prescribed to me, Retin-A and Acanya gel were a nice combo. However I was still dealing with breakouts from time to time. 

I’ll list a few of the methods that helped during the Rx and after it ran out that seemed to keep my breakouts to a minimum. 

  1. Witch Hazel – I always used this in high school, but I started back using it less than a year ago and ‘adding’ it with my current toner. Anything alcohol-free is vitally important as inadvertently causing more oil or sebum to produce could produce more break outs. I use it as soon as I get out the shower in my problem areas on my body or face and let it dry. 
  2. Black Soap – Another product I was experimenting with when I got financial freedom. This is touted as the ‘end all be all’ to any sort of skin issue, but personally it depends on what and whom you’re buying it from. Be careful ordering batches of these, as you want something that can’t be misidentified as a small child or bits of glass due to a lack of proper processing/filtering. Made from  palm ash, tamarind extract, tar and plantain peel and other natural sources that give it a dark brown or light brown color. The ‘dirtier’ and less uniform it looks, the more authentic the soap. I used this at night and washed it off with cold water. Don’t get this in your eyes, I repeat: DON’T GET THIS IN YOUR EYES
  3. Water – How many times can this be repeated? The times where my skin looked the most flawless was when I “kept drinking like a fish,” as my college roommate called it. 
  4. Apple Cider Vinegar & Green Tea – I always loved tea, and green or black tea was how I chose to wake up in the mornings. After mixing the ACV with hot water and honey and not tasting very good, I decided to just throw a tablespoon into my green tea. Best idea ever. I get the nutrients of both and the health benefits cited from the ACV. Apple cider vinegar with the ‘mother’ is said to be the homeopathic ‘thing’ that can help with anything. Again, that’s all hearsay unless medically proven, but it does help with my energy, and the more that I’ve consumed, the more of a glow my skin seems to have. I can’t explain it quite simply but it’s doing something and I like it. Just don’t drink this by itself – tooth erosion is real
  5. Colorful foods – as mentioned in my previous post, the more color in your diet, the better your diet. The better your diet? 

Hopefully these are some things (other than sleep when you finally graduate) that can help ease your journey when making a drastic change that will affect your internal and external appearance. 

Happy Nomming

Develop a Natural Sweet Tooth: Healthy snacks and food items to munch on

Ever since I decided to go meatless, I really got into the various snack items that can be found in any co-op or store on a hill. Here are a list of things you can chose to add to your diet and make people feel bad about their own simultaneously and I really really like.

Toasted Coconut Chips

These are light and buttery. Strips in a spaceship bag made of heaven.

Dried Mangoes

They’re pretty sweet due to the added sugar…But who cares. Have five strips and be awake for anything!

Dried Seaweed – You can usually find this in the ethnic food aisles in any store or those stores on the hills…but be careful with this! Eating too much made me feel a bit light-headed. But the added salt in some brands can make you think they’re just chips. Newsflash; they’re not. One or two sheets are good or you can use them for some home-made sushi rolls instead…

Trail Mix – No picture needed as it’s an age-old snack. You can either pay to buy a wholesale bag to last you through the months or you can make your own. Try to stay away from too much of those chocolate pieces!

Smoothies – You don’t need an expensive piece of equipment. Get a blender or mixer from any store and call it a day. During my mornings or afternoons in between classes, I added strawberries, blueberries and mangoes with any kind of nectar juice and a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar.

Fruit Bars – Any thing “apple,” is a go-to of mine, but feel free to experiment! However always be aware of the ingredients!

Happy Nomming!

Ditching the Chicken, Cow and their Friends

When I first decided to stop eating meat, I was nearing the end of my senior year in high school. A link to various images regarding the various types of mystery meat on the market (digitally altered perhaps) and the odd feeling of last night’s dinner weighed on my stomach and my face. The latter in which Proactiv and others tried to help.

Trying to be conscious of my health, and prove a point to my family (and maybe myself), I decided I’d stop eating meat.

You would have thought I had announced to my very Bajan/West Indian family, that I was mistaken about where I was, or how many days there were in a year.

See, meat & seafood are pretty much a base in a Caribbean diet aside from rice and peas. And if, for some reason, one decides to nix half of it, you still have the other.

Right? That’s what my mother wanted to know; what the hell was I going to eat? What doctor did I need to see? The vitamins, the weight marks – it was a sudden anxiety tunnel she drove me into.

But no matter! I was going to do it regardless. Until ‘that day.’


See, ‘that day‘ happened when I least expected it to. That’s how the Devil works, or so the elders say. I earned about eight dollars an hour doing the bare minimum of secretarial/Porter (correction, portress!) work for non-cloistered nuns on the weekends. I had a laptop, some snacks and complex convent to roam around when I needed to claim the word ‘fitness.’ Near the end of my shift, my ride wasn’t exactly on time, and the nuns were just about to serve themselves some humble food.

Would you like to have some dear?” How on earth could I refuse a giving soul? And turning down free food was sinful, so I meekly accepted, trying not to let the saliva reveal itself.


As I walked up the stairs, past the grandfather clock and the Virgin Mary, the nuns had a pretty big spread. Before I knew it I was laughing, digesting, and consuming, before the doorbell chimed.

Like a lady, I swallowed my gluttony and bid the nuns farewell until the next shift, and walked down the stairs. I saw the stained glass on the wall, and Mary bowing on the table, when I nearly collapsed like an actress in a telenova; I ATE THE CHICKEN.

Sure it was dry, stringy and needed water to go down, but I ATE THE FREAKING CHICKEN! What the hell?! The two weeks I salivated and starved. Opened the cupboard doors in disappointment and frustration. Dealt with harrowing headaches and a singing stomach, only to be tempted by the new evil that was MEAT!

I tried not to let the tears give way until I got to the car, and then I set them free. After wallowing in disappointment and self-loathing, my family members softly tried to tell me that I didn’t lose my badge or was less of a vegetarian because I slipped. What did they know? Well, I Googled it later, and saw that others said the same. So what the hell did I know?

All I knew is, was that unless I had full support and cash available to properly substitute this ‘no meat’ thing, it wasn’t going to be easy or last. When I calmed down and spoke to my mother about my decision, she slowly nodded and said “you can do it.”

I knew I could. I also knew that a nice plate of fish and rice would be nice to have right about then.

So, what have we learned for vegetarianism 101? Don’t cry over dry chicken or whatever meat type you ate when your first start out. You will slip up. If you’re serious about your new diet, have faith and let everyone know you haven’t lost your mind, but you’re trying something out for size. Also a strong stomach and good meals are a must! The first in case you do slip up, and the second if you want to swear off the stuff another time.