What happened to your face?

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by Jennifer Fugo on August 24, 2010

Oh, I don’t know, probably gluten.  Maybe it was the dairy and possibly even the eggs….of the vanilla creme doughnut I ate yesterday.  Upon waking, I found the skin on my cheeks to be inflamed with rough and reddish patches of what looks like some sort of rash.  ” Great”, I thought. ” I have a new client to meet in a hour.  Fabulous.”

This is how I started my morning. Now to be clear, the doughnut was a treat since I’ve been very ‘on my diet’ since getting back from Costa Rica. It was just one little treat that might have bothered my stomach, but I honestly didn’t see it being painted on my face. Yet this is what can happen because when you’re sensitive to certain foods, as I am, it can be a crap-shot as to how your body will react when you’ve eaten something that’s on the avoid list. I periodically get this cheek rash, but never connected it with what I was eating until now.

The point is that often we think that symptoms non-digestive in nature are completely unrelated to what we’re eating. Think again. Food is a foreign substance, just like drugs. There can be side effects, but unfortunately you can’t look them up on included paperwork disclosing everything that possibly could be at stake with your body’s homostasis (natural balance) as you would with drugs. I’m not saying that food and drugs are the same because they aren’t. However, they can and do affect the the body.

Even non-digestive issues such as acne, psoriasis, anxiety, depression, arthritis and asthma can be a consequence of a sensitivity.  The list is longer than this, but these are only a few that come to mind right this moment.  Either way, it’s worth considering.  Long-term consumption can lead to all sorts of problems and poor health-holes that you probably would rather not stumble into.  I know from experience.  And every now and then, I’m reminded of why these type of  ‘treats’ aren’t always the best of ideas for me.  It just so happens that this time it was starring me in the face.

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{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

Teresa August 24, 2010 at 6:06 am

You’re still beautiful. 🙂

Great timing for this blog entry! I too have been struggling with some minor outbreaks on my neck and face on my typically clear skin. I know the likelihood is it’s due to… well…there was that Ben & Jerry’s mishap…among others. For me, it’s definitely the dairy and sugar. But that’s the wonderful thing about life. God willing, we are blessed to wake again the following day and make better choices to help us get us back in balance.


Jennifer Fugo August 24, 2010 at 7:00 am

Thanks Teresa!

I just wanted to show all of you that issues with digestion can come out in various ways that can be totally unexpected and inconvenient! Just know that if you’re eating something that does bother you, it takes about 4 days for it to clear out of your system. It’s not to say that better choices the following day don’t help b/c they certainly do. However, many people don’t realize that it’s not just one meal…the effects are longer lasting and thus, can be difficult to pinpoint as to exactly what trigger them.

Love your words of wisdom! Thanks for sharing 🙂


Faye Smith August 24, 2010 at 7:50 am

Good blog post. Ditto!!! Yes, even one time can have a dramatic effect. And EVERY TIME, does have an effect, you just don’t usually “see” the result right away, so obviously. The old saying is so very true, “you are what you eat”. Every bite that goes into your mouth, every lotion/creme that you rub on your skin, every cosmetic you put on your body. Every shampoo and conditioner you use, every laundry detergent you use. It all adds up. You don’t notice the effects right away (usually) but that doesn’t mean they aren’t there and that they don’t come out to BITE YOU BIG TIME in the future with poor health that is so so so hard to get back. And they seem so unrelated (the symptoms/results VS the offending chemical or “food”).


Laury @thefitnessdish August 25, 2010 at 7:15 am

Awww…Sorry about the skin irritation! I am sure you still look great though.

It’s so true that food allergies show up in many forms, that’s why people have NO idea that they even have them, and wouldn’t even think to go there. Instead, they go for anxiety meds, depression meds, steriods and so on.

I notice that when I eat a lot of dairy, I break out like crazy!! It’s been more prevalent since I have cut it out. Now, if I treat myself to some ice cream now and then, I end up with all these craters on my face. No wonder years ago when I lived on cottage cheese and skinny cows I couldn’t get rid of my acne!


Lea @ Healthy Coconut September 2, 2010 at 5:34 pm

Ouch, I hope it didn’t itch. It looks painful though.

Thanks for visiting my blog so I can find yours. I have a lot to learn about nutrition and I am learning with my own body. I look forward to reading your posts.


Jennifer Fugo September 2, 2010 at 7:13 pm

Lea, fortunately it didn’t. It took about a week to go away and some sesame oil at night. I’m super excited to try your version of granola…just gluten-free!


Sally JP September 6, 2010 at 4:11 pm

My first thought is that it is possible it’s a mild breakout of dermatitis herpetiformis, which is often caused by gluten consumption by someone with celiac/gluten intolerance. It’s pretty common on people’s faces.

Heather McLaughlin sent me over! 🙂


Jennifer Fugo September 7, 2010 at 5:05 am

Hi Sally!
I’m glad that Heather sent you! Yes, it is quite frequent but, as you probably know, many people don’t realize that digestive issues can manifest in unexpected ways, so I figured this was the best way to share that with people. Thanks for reaching out and I also love your site! Your story is powerful and can’t wait to try some of what you’re creating!


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