The Acne Of Middle Age

I’ve been coming home for lunches instead of eating at restaurants for about a week and a half. Part of it is that my usual lunch buddies are busy elsewhere, part is a desire to conserve financial resources. I didn’t do it expecting to effect a significant drop in caloric intake. However, that seems to have happened. When we’re out somewhere, lunch will often be something like a pasta dish, a Mexican entree, or a hot sandwich. Typically these days I heat up a can of soup and make a small salad, which is a somewhat smaller lunch than I would eat while out.

I may have lost a pound or two this way, I can’t be entirely sure. My complaint is that this shift in eating habits seems to have produced a blossom of acne. Like the acne of puberty, middle-age acne seems to blossom while one sleeps, resulting in unsightly skin appearing in the morning. But unlike the acne of puberty, middle-age acne strikes all over the body instead of just around the face. It’s annoying and unsightly.

There must be something in the soup or the salad dressing, which I’m eating more of, that is giving me this reaction. It probably isn’t salt or MSG; I would expect that to be prevalent in restaurant food too. I wondered if it might be canola oil — I’m eating a lot of salad dressing and that’s the based of most dressings one buys in the store. But I would eat a fair amount of salads from restaurants too, and I have to imagine their dressings are also based on canola oil, since they come from foodservice providers who are functionally the same as the manufacturers of retail food products.

Burt Likko

Pseudonymous Portlander. Homebrewer. Atheist. Recovering litigator. Recovering Republican. Recovering Catholic. Recovering divorcé. Recovering Former Editor-in-Chief of Ordinary Times. House Likko's Words: Scite Verum. Colite Iusticia. Vivere Con Gaudium.


  1. This is quite odd. Perhaps it goes without saying, but if this persists I'd recommend having someone take a look at your skin. Are the foods you're eating now new (eg. a new brand of canned soup)?

  2. Not a new manufacturer, but I have tried some new flavors for variety's sake. Same for the salad dressing.

  3. As a proud graduate of the Bill Frist School of Examination-free Diagnosis, I feel well-qualified to offer medical advice. It sounds suspicious for some kind of food reaction, maybe to an additive in the soup.Or the mercury in one of the vaccines you got as a child.

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