Today's consumers are more socially and environmentally conscious than ever. All over the nation, Americans are making choices to improve the environment, from what they decide to drive (like electric cars, which will make up 54% of all new vehicle sales worldwide by 2040) to what they decide to eat. And although a lot of people decide to go vegan to support animal rights or do their part to save the planet, there are also a number of health reasons to support this lifestyle change. A vegan diet may provide increased energy for some, while others experience greater body acceptance or even alleviation of negative physical symptoms. June might be the month the most ice cream is produced for the pleasure of our palates, but we know it isn't the best thing for our bodies. Many vegans even report their skin improves after eliminating certain elements from their eating routine.
That was certainly the case for the girlfriend of Reddit user Kitchenninja11. The otherwise unidentified 24-year-old man wrote in a now-deleted post that his vegan partner adopted an animal-free diet for health reasons. She claimed that it was mostly to clear up her skin, but her boyfriend was skeptical -- and he decided to conduct an experiment without her knowledge or consent.
In the post, he wrote: "Now, I thought [the acne might have been] due to her age -- teenagers get acne and it goes away yeah, hers just went away a bit late. And now that we're living together, I've been getting tired of all the vegan food... She's a great cook but sometimes a man just needs some mac and cheese with cut up hot dogs. So I thought I would prove to her that the whole 'dairy gives me acne' thing is in her head."
Some 35% of people would never have discovered a business if it wasn't for a sign, so we recognize and rightfully come to know and trust labels, be they for business or products. This is especially true of food and drinks when certain allergens could have dangerous implications if mislabeled. The user further explained his deceptive plan, which very quickly went awry.
"For the past two months I've been emptying the same soy creamer container and filling it with dairy creamer," he said. "I was gonna do a big reveal, like 'Surprise! You can eat whatever you want!' But she's been wearing makeup both in and out of the house lately... and last night I saw her barefaced for the first time in a while and it is BAD. Like insects about to hatch out of her face bad."
Reddit isn't normally known for its noble intentions, but other users went in hard on the post author. One poster pointed out that his experiment could have made his girlfriend extremely sick, while others condemned his actions as "abusive" and "monstrous," explaining that his actions qualified as gaslighting. All in all, most users agreed that the man should come clean, get ready to get dumped, and learn how to cook for himself.
Certainly, it's fair that the spotlight should be on the malicious actions of this individual. But the story also makes a point that acne can sometimes be exacerbated by dairy and hormonal fluctuations. Since cows are often given artificial hormones to increase milk supply, it's thought that when we ingest these hormones, our own may be thrown out of balance -- and we may experience acne breakouts as a result. Although consumers spent nearly $5 billion worldwide on acne treatments in 2016, it's entirely possible that eliminating dairy products from your diet could be far more effective and allow you to save money on skincare.
What's more, some researchers believe that eliminating meat from your diet could also improve your skin. While the connection is a bit complex, the idea is that we can activate the pathway for acne breakouts by consuming certain nutrients (like leucine, which is found in beef and chicken). When we consume too much leucine, it can impact sebum production, skin cell growth, and overall inflammation in negative ways, creating more androgen hormones and a greater amount of acne.
It's important to note that there's no guarantee that switching to a vegan diet will clear up your acne. In fact, you could end up making your skin worse if your vegan diet isn't a balanced one. For example, if you're consuming mostly simple carbohydrates, you could experience worse breakouts than before. In addition, it's entirely possible that a dietary switch won't do much to improve your acne, as this skin condition can often be linked to a number of factors aside from diet.
Still, many vegans find they're pleased with the effects their new lifestyle has on their skin. And even if you don't find relief from the breakouts, maybe becoming a vegan will culminate in the breakup you really need to get healthy. At least, that's what we hope happened for the girlfriend featured on Reddit.