skincare, sweets, and Oxford commas

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Giving up dairy for better skin (and smoothie recipes to cope)

Jen eating milky desserts: key lime pie, espresso blondies, matcha soft serve ice cream

I'm convinced that dairy is an acne trigger for me, which sucks because I'm really into making buttery desserts, and I love dairy in general SO MUCH:
  • Triple cream brie from Cowgirl Creamery
  • Jasmine or earl grey tea-flavored ice cream from Mr and Mrs. Miscellaneous
  • Full-fat plain yogurt with granola – I could eat this every morning for the rest of my life. 
  • Sour cream in a taco. 
  • Melted cheese in any form – hello, raclette and fondue! 
  • Kouign-amann and passion fruit bostock from b.patisserie
  • Banana cake with cream cheese frosting from Icing on the Cake
  • Chocolate rum cake from The Prolific Oven
  • Vanilla celebration cake from Susiecakes
Whenever I eat any of these delicious things, I get a horrible breakout. Granted, I've never had an easy time digesting dairy. But beyond mere lactose intolerance, there seems to be something about milk itself (the hormones?) that upsets my skin.

I never would have considered cutting out dairy were it not for my dermatologist, who told me there's a scientifically proven (albeit weak) link between dairy consumption and acne. But because she mentioned it, I've cut dairy from my diet for the past month and a half, and much like Annie Tomlin, I've noticed a difference!

It's especially difficult when cheese-covered bar food and milky desserts call my name. When I was visiting fast-food-mecca LA earlier this month, I had to order burritos and burgers without cheese or sour cream. This also meant giving up on my conquest for the Blue Velvet Cake from The Milk Shop, which I'd been wanting to try for years. *stomp stomp whine whine*

Without my favorite dairy treats, I definitely have fewer endorphin-blasting moments. But the sustained level of endorphins in my system is higher on average because my skin's smoother and I don't have as many embarrassing digestive issues (the people around me are a lot happier too...)

Better yet, my foray into the dairy-free world has helped me discover products like So Delicious Yogurt, which has a thick, creamy texture and delightful (not overwhelming) coconutty taste.

I used this yogurt to make a dairy-free version of Blogilates' Rainbow Smoothie and the smoothie bowl of my dreams, inspired by Hello Miss May. See recipes below!

Dairy-free rainbow smoothies with spinach, pineapple, raspberries, strawberries, cherries, carrots, peaches, and pitaya Rainbow Smoothies
adapted from Blogilates
makes 2 generous servings

Mix each layer one at a time. I used my Cuisinart Smart Stick Blender for each layer, rinsing the blender blade in between each run.

Yellow layer:
- 4 frozen peach sections
- 1 cup frozen pineapple
- 2" banana
- 1/4 cup almond milk

Orange layer:
- 8 frozen peach sections
- 1 clementine
- 1/2 cup shredded carrots

Red layer:
- 1 cup frozen cherries, strawberries, and raspberries
- 3 tablespoons So Delicious Plain Yogurt
- 3 tablespoons almond milk

Purple layer:
- 1 cup frozen blueberries
- 2" banana
- 1/4 cup almond milk

Green layer:
- 1 cup frozen green grapes
- 1 cup spinach
- 3 tablespoons So Delicious Plain Yogurt
- 1/4 cup almond milk

Pink layer
- 1 pitaya smoothie pack (can be found in freezer section at Whole Foods)
- 2" banana
- 3 tablespoons almond milk

Spoon each layer into a tall clear glass and enjoy!

Green smoothie with granola, strawberries, blueberries, and almonds
Green Smoothie Bowls
adapted from Hello Miss May
makes 2 servings

Green smoothie ingredients:
- 1 cup frozen green grapes
- 1 cup spinach
- 3 tablespoons So Delicious Plain Yogurt
- 1/4 cup almond milk

- Trader Joe's Vanilla Almond Clusters cereal
- Blueberries
- Bananas, sliced
- Strawberries, sliced
- Almonds

  1. Blend all green smoothie ingredients together (you can use a traditional blender or a stick blender like the Cuisinart Smart Stick Blender).
  2. Get a shallow bowl.
  3. Place cereal on one side of the bowl.
  4. Place strawberry slices right next to the cereal.
  5. Layer blueberries next to the strawberries.
  6. Fill the other side of the bowl with the green smoothie.
  7. Place banana slices and almonds decoratively on top of the smoothie.
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