I Thought Raw Food Would Get Rid of My Acne : The Renegade Health Show Episode #705

Monday Nov 22 | BY |
| Comments (54)

I’ve heard this more than once…

Today, Annmarie and I talk about a few people we know who’s acne got worse on the raw food diet. It may be what’s happening to you.

If the acne doesn’t apply, we also answer questions about formaldehyde in coconuts, organic shaving creams, cheap shower filters and tips for eating healthy on the road.

Take a look…

Your question of the day: Are you using a shower filter? If no, why not?

Click here, scroll down to the bottom of the page and leave your comments now!

Live Awesome!

Kevin Gianni

Kevin Gianni is a health author, activist and blogger. He started seriously researching personal and preventative natural health therapies in 2002 when he was struck with the reality that cancer ran deep in his family and if he didn’t change the way he was living — he might go down that same path. Since then, he’s written and edited 6 books on the subject of natural health, diet and fitness. During this time, he’s constantly been humbled by what experts claim they know and what actually is true. This has led him to experiment with many diets and protocols — including vegan, raw food, fasting, medical treatments and more — to find out what is myth and what really works in the real world.

Kevin has also traveled around the world searching for the best protocols, foods, medicines and clinics around and bringing them to the readers of his blog RenegadeHealth.com — which is one of the most widely read natural health blogs in the world with hundreds of thousands of visitors a month from over 150 countries around the world.


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  1. Lynda says:

    Yes I use a Vita Shower Water filter since it gets out the chloromines in the water. Chloromines are a combination of Chlorine and ammonia that my city water system puts in the driniking water to kill bacteria, viruses etc. The AquaSauna shower filter does not.

  2. Tara Burner says:

    Silly question if you know Kevin, can one use the Aquasana with a water conserving shower head? the only reason I don’t have a filter is because I’ve yet to find one that works in conjunction with the Roadrunner water conserving shower head.

  3. Sheree says:

    Yes, we use a shower filter and can’t imagine being without one. We would so love a whole house filter. Have a great Thanksgiving!!

  4. Linda Miller says:

    Kevin, I have a question for you. Why are you wearing a hat in the house and pulled down to the point your eyes are practically covered? Just curious.

  5. Kim Britton says:

    We have been using Liquid Braggs aminos, but have been hearing that it is not good for you.Can you give me so more information on this? Thank you both,also really enjoy listen to you both to keep up the great work!!

  6. I just never thought about using a shower filter. Maybe I should. Great video.


  7. Cirelle says:

    Kevin, would you not suggest the acne is due to some detoxification going on in her body? Should she not hold it out and weather the storm with the belief that the hoped for results will come sooner or later?

  8. Veronika says:

    As someone who has struggled with acne for many years, I found that raw or not, there are certain food combinations that cause more acne in my system. Some people have acne-promoting habits while eating raw food, others have it while eating cooked foods. This is aside from the acne outbreak I might experience during a detox, which typically only occurs during the 2nd-3rd week of 100% raw for me when I do a cleanse (I’m high raw right now).

    When I eat too much sugar, specifically sugar + fat, or too much cacao, it causes acne. When I focus on fruits, vegetables, seaweed, sprouts, fermented foods, and some nuts/seeds, my skin clears up beautifully. Green juicing also works wonders.

    Raw foods that lead to more acne for me = sugar + fat in excessive amounts or too often (nut milk smoothies, cashew cheesecake, etc.). When I eat sugar on its own (lots of fruit) or lots of fat on its own, I’m fine. Even a little bit of sugar + fat is ok, but I know when I’ve had too much because it starts to affect my hormones (cystic acne) and I also get a candida outbreak, which causes pimples for me.

    Typical cooked foods that lead to acne for me = gluten, too much starch (too much rice, quinoa, potatoes, etc.), and the sugar + fat combo.

    Dairy can be raw or cooked, but it leads to acne for me too. Also eating too many acid-forming foods lead to acne for me.

  9. john says:

    Great one on one video .I felt like you were in my presence talking to me on a personal level. Ann Marie you look Magnificent sitting next to your dearly beloved husband you are very beautiful and well poised . And Kevin, well you just plain look Cool with that cap on. Over all you both look Spectacular to say the least. I use to use shower head but got upset with it as not an adequate amount of water flow would come out and with minimal force. But I really should check out Aqua Sana .

  10. nick says:

    yes I have a shower water filter I rarely take baths but I just saw a bath filter.

  11. Roxy Harte says:

    I think you both look cold… lol
    Hats and sweaters are routine inside our house when we’re trying to conserve energy and maintain a low heating bill… so maybe I’m projecting:)

  12. Hi Kevin, I’m curious too, why covering your eyes?
    I don’t have a water filter, I’m going to start looking for one though

  13. james says:

    yes. crystal quest shower filter, my head and body use to get dry and itch. now that i have the filter no itching+ doesnt smell like chemicals. oh ya speaking of chemicals ive been hearing more and more about chemtrails+ i see these all the time. what do you guys know about this?? anything we can do to protect ourself? i am concerned for my family and the people of the nation=james god bless you guys

  14. Yeppers. My shower won’t be my gas chamber!

  15. db : ) says:

    Yes, but I wonder about ANY filter effectiveness at the full open flow rate of water. Heard that the ratings are tested at a slower rate. This one person (dealing in water distillers) said that the effectiveness was poor. Does anyone know if what I was was accurate? After my conversation with him, I felt like I perhaps wasted my money this big filter:

    santé “ULTIMATE”® DUAL KDF® Shower Filter for Chloramine Removal

    Item # 92000 WC
    The first and only shower filter to remove chloramines and chlorine in one unit. Designed with special medias to remove and reduce chloramines (ammonia the city adds to your water)

    Municipalities are going for a cheaper substitute for 100% and mixing chlorine and ammonia=chloramines : (

  16. db : ) says:

    I perhaps answered my own question. Went to: http://www.santeforhealth.com/shopexd.asp?id=431

    I pasted from the site what they have listed (I am hoping it is true, since I have this):

    The ULTIMATE DUAL shower filter is the only shower filter that will allow the water to swirl through two filter chambers allowing the water to come in contact with the media. Other filters carry the water straight through at a rate of water flow that won’t allow enough contact time between the filter media and the water.Our ROBO SWIRL action removes the chloramime, chlorine, lead, heavy metals plus more.

  17. Elo McMillan says:

    We are not using one yet. Which ones would you recommend for a shower and for full house?

  18. Darlene says:

    I would think the acne is caused by the body cleansing itself. The body is detoxing, and in time, the skin will clear. The body is always trying to clear and heal itself and it can detox when giving good clean raw foods. The more acne would mean the more toxins that the body is ridding itself of.

  19. Anne says:

    HI Kevin and Ann Marie,

    I have a question for you regarding Aquasana,

    I’m currently living in Canada and going to move back to Australia shortly (I hope with this cold weather). Do you know if the Aquasana shower filters are adequate for Australia? I know that water filters have to be suited to the water it’s supposed to filter.

    If I bought a shower head it would be for over there. Also are replacement cartridges/filters available from over there.

    Many thanks

  20. Marla says:

    Aquasana does have a Shower filter that removes chloramines. It costs a little bit more than their regular shower filter. You just need to ask them for it.

  21. Kristine says:

    I have Aquasana filters… To become raw I pretty much followed Natalia Rose’s program for detoxification. This is a gradual balanced program to rawness. It stresses the importance of colonics and enemas because as your system becomes cleaner on green juices and raw food you clear out toxins. If done too quickly and you are not keeping up with elimination you can have re-tox. You don’t want this to happen. This might be the reason some people get serious acne.

  22. Jasmine says:

    I am one of those females that had worsening of acne on a raw food diet – quite a dramatic worsening and I thought it was detox but then it lasted 2 years! I was gourmet raw, then gabrielle cousens approach, then 80-10-10 to no avail. Finally I started body ecology diet and that worked wonders.

    The Body Ecology Diet – Donna Gates

    My acne is GONE! finally.

    I think it all came down to digestion and lowering both fat and sugar.

    Meanwhile, if you’re looking for raw food travel tips, check out my blog where I documented my 8-month (on-going) journey around North America – mexico, U.S., Canada – and shared recipes, raw food how-Tos, local farmer’s markets, vegan and veggie restaurants, and just how to exist as a raw foodist on the road.


  23. db : ) says:

    It is overpriced; however, they replaced a hand-held shower device where a plastic tab had broken for NO additional charge and has a pre-filter.

    The plastic pre-filter on this new filter had bad threads and had to use the previous pre-filter from them for it to work. The connections are not all metal expect for the small chrome-plated metal connection to the pre-filter.

    For the money…would like to see more quality metal connections. Although, I don’t own their business and have to deal with quarterly taxes, profit, shipping, testing, manufacturing, regulations, laws, etc. that affect the price.

    Bottom line: The high price must have gone more for the internal than the external. Of course the shrinking value of the dollar doesn’t help!

  24. Sheryl says:

    I personally believe that alot of negative symtoms in the Raw Diet is due to using Cocao, Hemp, Agave, Lot of Vinegar, Oils, and Spicy foods. Usually a cooked diet just have a little margarine or salt. Very mellow taste. I am a liquidtarian now and I had issues until I completely left out of my diet salt and all the above.

  25. Josephine says:

    I use whatever shower filter the local home repair place has and I shower about twice or three times a week, so the filter lasts over a year. These really help limit the chlorine in the air and on me. I had not realized that some water systems put in ammonia. That may explain why sometimes I cannot stand the smell–even to wash dishes or my hands! I thought they used calcium carbonate or even soda. Most soda is contaminated now. I buy my baking soda online–getting US Pharmaceutical purity.

    As for water-conserving shower heads, the filter itself might limit water flow. If it limits the flow more than the shower head would, that will cause problems. Are you soaking the filter before placing in the water line? Also, a full filter will limit flow severely. I also put a sediment filter before my shower filter.

  26. jackie says:

    K and A,
    You look so warm and cozy in your winterish outfits! I have a water filter in the shower but don’t remember the name off hand.

  27. Nina says:

    Kevin, I think these ladies are also affected by candida that makes them break out with their hormones as well. If you’re not doing 100% raw low fat/no fat, it definitely makes your acne worse.

    I think that people should consider Roger Haeske’s candida cleaner product, if you kill your excess candida and eat a low fat diet it can get rid of the skin problems, the cravings the weight gain etc.

    It really helps! Google it.

  28. Chris G says:

    We don’t yet. We’ll have to do some research into the benefits of having a shower filter.

  29. Julia says:

    Yes, I use a shower filter; I use the one Dr. Mercola sells. However, I took the TDS count before and after the filter and it didn’t look like it was much of a difference, in fact they’re both pretty high numbers before and after (Phoenix water is so bad). At least it gets rid of most of the chlorine.

  30. come for a free colonic in hudson ny
    the skin is the largest eliminating organ but the colon is the king

  31. yes, i do use a shower filter (new wave enviro products brand) and have been for years
    it is actually more important than a drinking filter because you breathe in through your nose and into your lungs, as well as, absorb through your skin more chemicals from a shower or bath (you need a separate bath ball if you do, because you are soaking in the chemicals- YUCK!) then the amount of water you will drink in a day

    check out my blog: http://www.rawsomegal.wordpress.com and read about my 42 day coconut water cleanse i did last december 2009 – click on the archive for december, to read it from the beginning (i give a day to day account)

    chef mindy aka Ageless (low-fat) Raw Vegan Beauty

  32. Joel Brown says:

    Linda I giggle at your comment about Kevin’s hat.

  33. elf says:

    We don’t use one becaose we get water from our well. No chlorine nor ammonia added. Would use one for hard water though. Anybody know of good one?

  34. freedom fighter says:

    hey I just got a shower head filter right before this episode weird but yea I use the waterwise shower filter what do you think

  35. RJ says:

    Thank you, Kevin and Annmarie!

    I love seeing you both together. Interesting video here. At 56 years of age, I call my facial(acne)breakouts “bumplets”. I went raw for 3 weeks and little “bumplets” appeared on my face. I accepted it as a detoxification process.

    This video is very interesting to me. Even though my “bumplets” are foreign to me (especially at my age) I kind of like them. It brings back memories of my youth and the importance of eating properly.

    I’d much rather have “bumplets” and feel happy and energetic inside…than to not have “bumplets” and feel depressed and worn down inside.

    Just wanted to share with other happy “bumplet” people. Be gentle with your cute little bumplets. My skin really gets along with Annmarie’s earthy skin~care products. Don’t focus on your bumplets. Focus on LOVE.

    Happy Thanksgiving!

  36. Debbie says:

    Ann Marie tell me you didn’t cut your hair !!!!!!!!! If you did its cute, but you have beautiful long hair, no matter, it’s always good to see you with us.
    Take care guys

  37. Vitamin B12 says:

    I use the Showerwise, because I can’t get the Aquasana to fit my shower head in the UK.

    I also find that eating 100% raw doesn’t suit me at all. It makes me lose weight very quickly, my face gets really think and I really lack energy. About 30-50% raw works best for me. I try to minimise bread, as this also saps my energy.

    I have been told that some people can’t cope with a raw diet because their digestion is not strong enough to digest raw food. No idea if this is true or not.

  38. Bjorn says:

    To all of you out there having problems doing a full raw food diet, I strongly recommend read this before giving up.
    I have listened a lot to David Wolfe’s mp3 archive lately, and what he repeatedly says is that a raw food diet alone is just a basis for all the other stuff you need to obtain perfect health.
    He particularly stresses that everything you eat either has to be certified organic or wild food picked far away from cities and towns, busy roads, farms using pesticides and artificial fertilizers, chemical companies and high-voltage power lines to mention some of the worst polluters and destroyers of our food.
    He also says that medicinal fungi has to be boiled to obtain full effect from them, and that organic superfood is a must along with sprouts and grasses like wheatgrass in any diet, and that it is most efficient taken fluidly as juice and/or smoothies along with teas.

    But all this is only the basics of what we need.

    According to David our body needs to have all 92 minerals in our bodies to obtain perfect health, and goes on to say that we’re lucky to find as many as 10 minerals, tops!, in conventionally grown raw plant food, and that the most we can expect from certified organic raw food lies somewhere between 35 and 50 minerals at best. So how can we best go about it to mineralize us optimally? Read on.

    What David says next is that filtering your drinking water is very important, because one of the most commonly found substances in tap water today is toilet paper residue. You figure out the rest.

    He also says that he puts/drinks his filtered water in/from glass bottles, adds some high quality sea salt or celtic salt into it because salt contain around 80 minerals. To top it off he also adds a blade of grass to it, some MSM, squeezes some lemon into it and lets it sit in the sun to energize itself whenever possible to maximize its positive energy potential.

    He further goes on to say that the only plant family that has all 92 minerals in it is grasses, and recommends strongly that we base our diet on wild grasses or grasses from certified organic farms to mineralize ourselves.

    Why David stresses this is that unless you do your best to mineralize yourself, living in the raw alone won’t do the job. It will be better for you than most other diets, but isn’t enough. Far from it.

    So start foraging, eat wild, grow your own sprouts and vegetables at home preferably using rain water. He recommends everyone with access to (salty) sea water to bring it home in canisters and dilute it 1 part sea water to 10 parts tap or rain water for rinsing sprouts and to water your plants. This way you provide your plant food with all the minerals they can possibly get – minerals that finds their way into your body when you eat plants and sprouts watered with this “magic” water. Experiments also shows that diluted sea water used to water garden plants makes them resistant to just about every known disease in the plant kingdom. How about that?

    David also talks about how you can teach your own immune system to complete itself to help guard yourself against diseases by drinking your own urine. I know this might sound gross to most of us, but our own urine is completely sterile, it has no taste once entering the body and is only beneficial to you as it contains everything your body produces to protect and supplement itself with including digestive enzymes and lots of other beneficial stuff you need like vitamin Bs.

    The method is very simple. When you urinate, let the first half go in the toilet as this is where all the toxic stuff is. After that you pee directly in a glass. If you need to cool it down or drink it with lemon or hold your nose or put it in a juice or smoothie or something to get the job done, fine! Just do it the way you’re comfortable with. Adding your own urine to your diet will greatly improve your health. Urine is also perfect to clean wounds and to wash your hair and body with instead of using soap. So if you’re in serious trouble, urine is your closest antiseptic, sterile, top healthy friend as well as your own immune system booster.

    If you want to know more about all these things as well as lots of other vital information that can seriously improve your health, just go to YouTube and write David Wolfe 2010 in the search field and take it from there. David is an amazing health researcher, his own guinea pig, and a very generous sharer of information that will greatly improve your health and life quality if you’re willing to listen and implement what he says in our own life.

    I hope this has been helpful to you in some way and wish you the best life ever!

  39. Rikki M says:

    never even thought of it

  40. Joe says:

    Aquasana! 😀

  41. I don’t use a shower filter because we have a radon mitigation unit filtering all our house water. (We only -drink- gathered spring water, but use house water for bathing, washing dishes, etc.) This is probably adequate, right?

    Lisa Marie
    Owner, Rite Chocolate

  42. Chuck says:

    Yes, we have a Wellness filter on our primary shower and kitchen sink. Unfortunately Wellness has gone out of business. I would love to hear other’s thoughts on the best of breed shower and under sink filter systems. As with Lisa, we use spring water for general consumption.

  43. Sue says:

    Yes, we still have an Aquasana shower filter even though we installed a whole-house water filter system a little over a year ago. We just haven’t bothered to switch out the shower filter–our shower is now “double filtered”

  44. No, filter on the shower, Pur on the faucet though we don’t use it much. We are on a well that is tested annually and everything seems good….There is no flouride and it is only disinfected with bleach when the pump is serviced so we feel like it is good water, even though is is somewhat “hard” water.


  45. Beth says:

    Not currently using a shower filter, but I have been meaning to buy one and get it installed.
    Maybe that will be my Christmas present to myself 🙂

  46. Sheree says:

    I just watched a video from Raw Foodest Paul Nison and he has a doctor on his show saying that shaving the arm pits can cause breast cancer. Here is the link. http://paulnison.com/health-show/ The episode is called Shaving armpits and breast cancer.#399 What are your thoughts on this?

  47. Yes, I have installed two shower filters in our dual-head shower. I was cheap and got the least expensive, highest rated filters I could find — Culligan. I really don’t notice much of a difference.

    To be honest, I haven’t really noticed *any* noticeable changes in my health or body since going mostly raw 2 years ago and doing all the extra healthy things like using Adya Clarity in my water, installing shower/water filters, wearing a Quantum Crystal, buying a grounding mat and fitted sheet, running at least 25 miles per week plus cross training 2-3 times a week and taking a multitude of supplements and superfoods each day. I feel like I’ve been wasting my time/money as I wait to see/feel results.

    I still get acne. My sex drive is all but absent. I struggle with finding energy most days. I have inexplicably gained ten pounds in the last month. I wake up sore and stiff almost every morning. I should be seeing improvement in my health, but I struggle just to maintain my health and in some cases, it has declined (weight gain, acne, running injuries, lack of energy).

    I want to be the “poster child” for (high) raw veganism, but I am not happy with my overall state of being, how and why should I convince others to join me?

    Sorry for venting, but after stepping on the scale this morning, I was mortified and understandably frustrated.

  48. RawGuru says:

    Love shower filters and used one for years until i moved to a new house. Have yet to install one. I think i’ll be putting on the Zeolite Filter, definitely on my “thing to do” list. It is amazing how much cleaner your hair and skin feels after a shower with filtered water. Unfiltered water can be really drying especially for sensitive skin. Some cities are way worse than others. I am living in Portland, OR right now and there’s not much chlorine in the city water. Places like LA….i would HAVE to have a shower filter

  49. BriannaG says:

    Yep! I absolutely use a shower filter. My water smells better for it, and I’m healthier 🙂

    I feel the need to address the dogmatic comments about the raw food diet. It does not work for everyone, because everyone is different. And let me just say, as someone who struggled with acne for years and years and did the raw food diet AND did plenty of research about cleansing and detoxifying and has done blood tests… it CAN make acne flair up, and it’s not caused by the body detoxing. No, she shouldn’t hold out and “weather the storm”, because her body is showing her (through cystic acne) that something is not balanced in her diet. A couple pimples here and there might be due to detoxification. A huge breakout is another story, and almost always due to a dietary imbalance that causes gut imbalances OR hormone imbalances (Kev sent out a great newsletter about this a few weeks ago).

    Sticking to a dogma, blindly, in almost all cases, is detrimental to your health. Balance is the answer, in any area of life.

  50. Eddie Orso says:

    I use the aquasana filter. Have been for over two years now. It’s been so effective for me. When i shower at someone else’s house or a hotel i can really notice how much it works back home. No smell of chlorine and leaves your hair softer. Totally a must!

  51. Hi Kev and Annmarie

    I cannot do without my CUZN bath filter. It is the only reasonably priced filter that wil remove 30-50% fluoride as well as filtering the usual chlorine, metals etc,..Good for 10,000 liters all for 50$.

    Raw(Chemical Nori
    I have just been told that Nori sheets are made by using Hydroclorice acid and causitc soda then it is usuallly heat treated.
    Raw means not cooked but they would still use those chemicals – do these chemicals do damage in the long run?

  52. Sara Rice says:

    I do indeed use a shower filter and I find it’s a much more pleasant experience and far less drying to my skin and hair.

    With regards to a chemical free and alcohol free shaving cream- I love this one by the vital image that High Vibe in nyc sells- http://www.highvibe.com/catalog/product_info.php?products_id=2085

    With regards to acne- I think there is something to be said for imbalance in diet and I think also one needs to not figure how much one’s emotional state and well-being or lack there of can have an effect on the skin. I definitely have seen equal breakouts during stressful times in the last few years of being raw even admidst dietary measures. Which in turn could very well be causing havoc on my hormones.

  53. Katie says:

    Where do I find organic young coconuts in Connecticut???????

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