Although very different situations, there are a surprising number of similarities between the struggle to get healthy skin and the struggle to get a healthy body. I’m going to map out similarities and differences here with the intention of giving people some insight into their own emotional reactions when dealing with difficult challenges of life.
We’ll start with interesting similarities:
1) Emotional imbalance will eventually develop in all cases.
-sooner or later, long term obesity and chronic acne can tweak the mind of any normal human being. Once an emotional problem has set in, treatment becomes even more challenging.
2) They are both 100% treatable:
-All Obese patients can get in shape as proven by the show “The Biggest Loser”
-All Acne Patients can safely get clear as proven by the medical project, “The Acne Practice”
3) Both Obesity and Acne are Self-Vicitimizing Situations:
-Obese patients have been blaming “Glandular and Genetic Problems” for their obesity for decades.
(This notion has since been disproven by the show “The Biggest Loser”)
-Acne patients display the exact same type of self-victimization using “Hormonal Imbalances or Bad Genetics”
(This notion has since been disproven by “The Acne Practice”)
4) Western Medicine often fails them both:
-5 minutes with the doctor is often not enough to “cure” obesity.
-5 minutes with the doctor is often not enough to “cure” chronic resistant acne
5) Eastern Medicine often fails them both also.
-An enthusiastic caring practitioner seen once a week or once a month is sometimes not enough. These two conditions can be very stubborn.
6) The Situation is Underestimated
-Frustration develops when obese patients can’t get victory. This frustration is generated from an expectation that it “should” happen from whatever efforts they are making.
-Frustration develops in acne patients when a 20 dollar bottle of cream does not transform their entire life. Acne patients are notorious for underestimating the difficulty of their situation. (large companies have been catering to this magical thinking for decades)
7) Both utilize a losing mentality to protect themselves from more heartache and pain:
-When beat down many times by failure despite great efforts, both obese patients and acne patients can become apathetic or defeated. When this emotional phenomenon takes hold, it takes an enormous amount of energy to wake them up to the reality that these situations are always treatable. (and thus the need for the show “The Biggest Loser” and the 120 videos in “The Acne Practice”)
These similarities can make obesity, acne, and all other treatable chronic conditions behave like the same chronic condition.
The emotional reactions are rooted in both Control Issues and The Agony of Defeat.
However, despite the similar heartache and reactions, acne and obesity have many differences that should be illustrated here as well.
1) Hands Down, Chronic Acne is trickier.
From Richard Simmons to that Tae Bo guy, there have been successful practitioners of fitness that have proven over and over again that anyone who really wants it can get fit.
However, until this recent project started in 2007, there has never been an acne expert who could really prove all forms of acne are safely treatable.
Poorly backed up claims and imaginative theories have ruled this field mainly due to the difficulty of getting solid results without taking chemotherapeutic levels of medications.
For this reason alone, Acne has proven to be the tougher condition to beat.
While there are still many motivated obese patients temporarily losing the battle of fitness at this time, the motivation of a chronic acne sufferer is often times more comparable to that of an olympic athlete. Acne suffers will often do anything to get clear including extremes of nutritional restriction, application of topicals, avoidance of aggravating situations, and spending every hard earned cent they gather. When referring to the ultra-motivated group of patients, Acne sufferers are very different from obese patients.
-While fitness may require great personal training and coaching for some people, no group of suffering souls has collectively spent more money on themselves than the acne patients. On numerous occasions, I’ve had patients tell me they have already spent over 20 thousand dollars unsuccessfully trying to fix their skin.
While Obesity and Acne have remarkable emotional and self-vicitmizing similarities, Acne has proven to be a much trickier situation to conquer.
Fortunately, due to shows like “The Biggest Loser” and “The Acne Practice”, we all now know that both situations are treatable in 100% of cases.
There are no exceptions to this rule and no amount of self-vicitmization or hopelessness will ever refute what these two projects have already proven.
©2010 “Acne vs. Obesity: A study of our humanity” by Dr. Neal Schwartz