This is a reader story from Jessica. Click here to submit your own reader story to be featured on The Love Vitamin!
Let me tell you a story—an ironic, surprising story. This is the story of how a medical diagnosis and the accompanying treatment plan killed two birds with one stone.
More importantly, this is also a story about staying optimistic despite acne—about letting the right treatment come to you when you are ready for it.
It’s A Little Bit Funny
I am a freelance writer who specializes in health and fitness topics. I came into this career with a fair amount of health-related knowledge. And since this job requires me to stay on top of all the latest heath trends, discoveries, and fads, I do quite a bit of research.
One of my favorite topics to write about is vitamin deficiencies. I travel a lot and have seen firsthand the devastating side effects of poor nutrition. If there is anything I can do to help prevent people from suffering that same fate, I do what I can.
Therefore, you can imagine my surprise when I went to the doctor and found I had a vitamin deficiency! It was like the Field of Dreams all over again…if you write about it, it will come.
The doctor needlessly explained my condition to me. Once he said I had a vitamin B12 deficiency, I felt like smacking myself on the head. Of course I had a B12 deficiency. While I hadn’t gone completely vegan, my diet was definitely more plant based than it used to be.
Since vitamin B12 is only found in animal products—eggs, milk, poultry, beef, fish, etc.—I was missing out on a vital nutrient.
Choosing My Weapon of Choice
Because my diet lacked adequate amounts of vitamin B12, I needed supplementation. Basically, I had two options; I could take oral pills daily or vitamin B12 injections sporadically (like two to four times per month).
I knew daily pills would never work. I’m as forgetful as they come. For me, vitamin injections were the better option. I don’t mind needles so the experience wasn’t as traumatic for me as it is for some people.
My writing career has put me in touch with various health companies. Armed with my doctor’s prescription, I contacted this one for some B12 injections. After a few days, the vitamin B12 injections arrived on my doorstep; I was ready to combat this deficiency!
A Surprising Turn of Events
Fast forward about two months. I had been taking my vitamin injections like a good girl. I was starting to see the results my doctor promised—increased energy, more restful sleep, improved concentration, and less digestive distress.
I also noticed a pleasant side effect I wasn’t expecting, something my doctor failed to warn me about.
My acne had cleared up!
Since I was about 13 years old, I’ve struggled with mild to moderate acne. Through the years, various things have helped. At one point, I tried that heavy-duty prescription medication that threatened to destroy my liver and unborn children (you know the one).
Oral contraceptives worked for a while too. But since the birth of my first son, I haven’t taken it. So, the acne returned.
In recent years, I hadn’t been too fussed about my acne. I had enough good things going in my life (husband, kids, job, house, etc.), I wasn’t super worried about this one negative thing.
But now, I was experiencing clear skin—clearer than it had been in years.
I talked with my doctor. Was it possible that these vitamin B12 injections had led to this surprising and pleasurable turn of events? While clear skin isn’t a common result of rectifying a B12 deficiency, my doctor wasn’t entirely surprised.
The higher our vitamin B12 levels, the lower our cortisol levels. Cortisol is the hormone our body produces when we are stressed. As my nutrient levels rose, my stress and hormone levels dropped.
Plus, vitamin B12 helps regulate our circadian rhythms, ensuring we have more restful, rejuvenating sleep.
Apparently, these two things—plus a whole host of other things that were probably now taking place my body—combined to form a powerful anti-acne solution.
What This All Means
So, what does this mean for you? Am I suggesting you run out and buy vitamin B12 injections just to see if they clear your acne too? No, not really.
I want to encourage you to stay strong, not lose heart. For those of us who have battled acne for years, we know how devastating the condition can be. Any time we try a new treatment plan, we are so optimistic—maybe this is the one! But if it doesn’t work, our hopes are dashed yet again.
Stay optimistic. Look for solutions. Take a hard look at your lifestyle, eating habits, emotional condition; see what you can do to improve you (and not necessarily your acne). Join communities like this one; listen to positive, uplifting, encouraging stories.
Don’t define yourself by your acne. Because it is entirely possible that the moment you start focusing on being a better person overall, an acne cure will wallop you upside the head!
Jessica Velasco is a mother of two, lover of ice cream, experimental photographer, passionate writer, and cycling enthusiast.