Diet and Acne - Foods that can Cause Acne
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Getting rid of acne through diet is still a very controversial issue. New research shows that some types of foods can cause a higher sebum production, as well as hormonal imbalances. Also, many foods can cause inflammation, including inside the skin glands. While many dermatologists don't even bother to ask their acne patients about their diet, most holistic practitioners put great emphasis on a healthy diet.
The latest studies in nutrition and skin disorders have concluded that there is a link between ingesting high amounts of sugar and acne. An overload of insulin seems to trigger inflammation and thus, acne breakouts. There is no doubt that Western diets especially, have very high glycemic loads. Insulin spikes have a high impact on skin appearance, and it is worse for people that are particularly sensitive to insulin.
Refined sugar and flour are among the main culprits for acne and other health issues. Refined sugar has no nutritious benefit. In fact, it strips the body of essential B vitamins and Calcium. Sugar also feeds candida, tumors, burdens the adrenal glands, suppresses the immune system, stress out the nervous system, and can cause premature aging.
How to avoid sugar and get clear skin?
- Avoid all processed sugars, sweet snacks, brown sugar, corn syrup, any type of syrup, and anything very sweet in general.
- Eat only fruit, but not in big quantities. 1-2 servings of fruit per day is enough. Avoid very sweet fruits if you are prone to diabetes.
- If you must eat something sweet, buy organic raw honey, but don't consume more than one tablespoon per day.
- In time, your cravings for sweets will diminish until you will no longer feel any need for sugar. You will also be able to stabilize your blood sugar levels, get clear skin, and avoid diabetes later on in life.
Many people have reported that staying off sugar has had a tremendous positive effect on your skin, even helping them get rid of acne very fast. However, some people need additional diet changes to get rid of acne completely. Nonetheless, eliminating sugar from your diet will help your body stay healthy for a long time, and to avoid degenerative diseases.
Almost all types of dairy products, milk especially, have been associated with acne formation. Many people have gotten rid of their acne by suppressing their dairy intake. Milk is a substance than contains close to 60 different hormones and hormone precursors. The primary function of milk is to help growth. Thus, milk contains lots of growth hormones, but also sexual hormones such as testosterone and progesterone. It's easy to see why a hormonal acne would be very influenced by dairy intake. In addition, dairy products from cows milk contain almost 80% casein compared to 20% casein in human milk. A few medical studies have linked casein intake with formation of cancerous tumors, thus the immune function might be lower while consuming dairy. Dairy also contains insulin and insulin like growth factors IGF-1 and IGF-2. Since insulin has already been linked with acne, drinking milk with sugar or eating milk chocolate can have devastating effects for the skin. Another study has shown that teenagers that consume great quantities of milk and dairy products have a higher occurrence of cystic acne.
How to avoid dairy and get rid of acne?
- Avoid any type of milk, especially pasteurized milk.
- Avoid cheese and other dairy products. If you feel that you need some dairy, or can't cut them out completely, buy only organic yogurt and limit the consumption to 2-3 per week.
- Eat only organic butter for the essential fats if you would like. 1 pack per week is more than enough. Don't eat any chocolate that contains milk.
- Eat only dark chocolate that has a low sugar content.
Getting rid of sugar and dairy from the diet is probably the most essential steps to getting rid of acne completely. Other foods that can cause acne include: hydrogenated oils, anything with preservatives and colorants, fried foods (especially when using unhealthy vegetable oils), and foods that have a high content of iodine.
The Omega 6- Omega 3 ratio has also been associated with acne and other health conditions. It seems that the Western diet contains too much Omega 6 and too little Omega 3. Salmon and cod are probably the best sources of Omega 3. You can also supplement with cod liver oil to ensure that you're getting enough Omega 3. Healing your gut and promoting a good intestinal flora is also essential for fighting acne. Taking lots of antibiotics can destroy good intestinal flora and promote harmful bacteria. Make sure to supplement with good quality probiotics if you suspect that your gut is not healthy.
Getting rid of acne can be achieved if the immune system is functioning properly, and if all the organs are functioning properly. Each individual may have a particular organ or issue that needs to be addressed in order to get rid of acne, but diet plays a very important role in the healing process.