Last updated on November 27, 2018
Yes, it’s true! There is such a thing as “food-acne”. What the pharmaceutical companies don’t want you to know is that just through avoiding some common unhealthy foods many people could be cured of their acne.
There is a major controversy when it comes to foods causing acne. A lot of dermatologists and people alike will tell you that food has got nothing to do with acne; and that it’s all in the head. However, there are a whole lot of researches that would beg to differ. Food might not be the direct cause of acne, but some foods are definitely accountable in its outburst. This is because acne could result due to high blood sugar problems (like insulin resistance), inflammation, and stress. I will cover 5 basic foods (or categories of foods) that researchers have proven to have some effect on outbreaks.
High Glucose Foods
These foods include refined carbohydrates like grains and refined sugar (such as in candy or soda). Let me first of all point out that sugar that comes from eating fruits is different because the fibres in them help not cause a sudden increase in blood sugar levels. Why is high glucose bad for you? Because it triggers your pancreas to secrete insulin in order to neutralize the high blood sugar levels, but can sometimes overcompensate instead. This insulin causes an increase in the production of sebum (skin oil), it also causes an increase in the speed of skin cell regeneration, and in turn, the facility of the skin cells to get expelled out is decreased; this means more clogging of pores.
When considering fatty foods, we should know that there are good and bad fats. When you eat too many bad fats, causing blood sugar problems (blood sugar levels either rise up too high or drop down too low) that, as I explained before, increase sebum production and result in blocked pores. In addition, fat has yet another devastating effect on the body. Too much of fat decreases the rate of nutrient and oxygen flow to cells, for this reason, cells will not get enough nutrients and oxygen that they really need, causing acne to worsen. Always know that Trans fat is very bad for you, and it could be found in foods like fast foods, frozen foods, cookies, cakes, donuts, butter, margarine, etc.
Dairy products contain a lot of fat, which like I mentioned above worsen acne. But in addition to fats, we cannot fully digest cow milk, since we lack the enzymes. The molecules that are left not broken down are therefore treated as foreign bodies, and our immune system sends out WBCs (White Blood Cells) to fight them off, causing our immunity to weaken and in turn more inflammation results. Because of this, acne cannot be healed fast (due to weak immunity).
Also, when considering dairy products, we should take into mind that milk contains high levels of growth hormones (as milk comes from pregnant cows); your skin glands convert these hormones into DHT (Dihydrotestosterone) hormones that causes sebum production to increase, which of course worsens acne.
Processed foods are refined, and are therefore difficult to digest fully, this leads to allergic reactions, inflammations, and can indirectly cause acne. In addition, because processed foods are highly refined, they lose their taste; and for this reason, manufacturers add flavours, chemicals, and additives to make them taste better, so you know they’re not good for you at all. And keep in mind that processed foods contain fats, which I mentioned earlier they may cause blood sugar problems and might result in acne.
Caffeine and Alcohol
Caffeine and alcohol do two things. First, they raise stress hormone levels by triggering Adrenaline glands to secrete them, increasing stress levels. Stress can not only be linked to acne, but also to almost every other disease.
The second thing that caffeine and alcohol do is disturb sleep. They are both known to prevent a person from going into deep sleep, which is crucial for the body to do physical restoration and detoxification.
Finally, when we talk about food, we must also consider food allergies (food intolerance and sensitivity). There are some foods that we eat, but could be allergic to without knowing. Food allergies cause your immune system to respond and cause inflammation and can result in acne.