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By xo vain/Tamara Anderson
Updated Jun 27, 2016 @ 1:45 pm

At the end of February, I made a decision to change my eating habits for health reasons. I know there are a lot of arguments centering around obesity and health, but I can only speak to my personal experience.

Following a car accident in February of 2015, I rapidly gained about 45 pounds, and while I am a proponent of feeling beautiful at any size, I just wasn’t feeling good. I wasn’t feeling bad in the sense of not thinking that I was beautiful, but I just physically felt bad. I was dealing with a lot of depression and anxiety (and by dealing with I mean keeping it entirely to myself and putting on a happy front) and was having a hard time staying active once I fully recovered from my injuries. I also had some other physical issues happening that I thought might be related to weight gain, so I decided to make an effort to make better eating choices to see if they impacted how I was feeling.

I found that not only did the change make a difference in some of the physical issues I was experiencing (I’m still dealing with some of that and consulting with a doctor) but it also had a positive impact on the appearance of my skin.

I’m the kind of person that has to be all-in when it comes to changing what I’m eating, so after doing some research/reading, talking with some friends with similar issues, and talking to a medical professional, I decided to do a round of Whole30. For those of you who aren’t familiar, Whole30 is a program that basically cuts out everything but meat, fruit, vegetables, and healthy fats for 30 days (there are more odds and ends covered in the book but this is the basic structure) and then allows for reintroduction of different food groups one at a time over a 10 day period to see how your body reacts to them.

The first week was pretty rough, but as I got into my second week, I started to notice an improvement in my energy levels and mood. By day 30, I was feeling absolutely fantastic, and I started getting compliments on how glowy I looked. Since then, I’ve been eating mostly the same with the addition of a few things like honey, brown rice, black beans, and the occasional “treat.”

Since adopting a cleaner diet, I’ve noticed that my skin has been clearer, I don’t get hormonal breakouts as much, and my nails seem to be growing faster. The texture of my skin is also smoother, which has allowed me to wear less makeup on a daily basis. I look at myself in the mirror every day, so it’s hard sometimes for me to see a difference in the way I look, but when I started comparing photos of myself from before I started Whole30 to now, I realized my skin genuinely did look different.

I know this is not groundbreaking by any means; it makes sense that what you eat can impact your skin. I also know that this isn’t the cure-all for every skin malady in the world, but I’m certainly glad it’s been a positive change for me.

I’m planning on continuing to eat mostly clean because I actually feel like a person again, and I want to see how it continues to improve other health issues, but I’m happy that it also has the added benefit of making my skin look awesome.