Is Acne Really Affected by Diet?

September 21, 2016

Nutrition articles stress the importance of following a strict diet in order to control bouts of acne, but is this really true? Many resources attribute refined carbohydrates, dairy, and saturated fats to acne. The thought is that Americans have become accustomed to a diet lacking low glycemic index foods (ie. processed foods), which in turn spikes insulin levels and causes an increase in sebum production. This sebum production can then clog pores often on the face, chest, and back, resulting in acne.

In 2013, a research study published in the American Academy of Dermatology showed a strong correlation between acne and diet. The article highlighted research based studies that primarily focused on glycemic index and blood sugar. In particular, a study of Australian males who followed a strict low glyacne-and-dietcemic diet experienced significant improvement in the severity of their acne after following a diet of low glycemic index foods. The results were not surprising and seemed to follow established stereotypes. However, they also had significant weight loss during the study. Did the diet itself cause the improvement in acne, or was it the weight loss? Or was it something else altogether?

It is hard to pin point what is the actual cause of acne because is seems to be a culmination of factors including genetics, food production, and food choices. In addition, with this particular study, there could be other differences besides diet that could contribute to the differences in acne results. While it is true that a diet rich in fruits, vegetables and lean meats is an effective way to maintain a healthy body, it may or may not be the case for acne.

So is acne really affected by diet? There are certainly many studies that show a link. However, more studies are needed to figure that out true cause and control for more environmental and genetic factors. In the meantime, it can’t hurt to get the other proven nutritional benefits from eating a healthy diet!

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ActivMed is determined to help find a helpful medication to treat different severities of acne. We are currently enrolling for several acne related studies. Please feel free to call for more information at any time! 603-319-8863

Source: American Academy of Dermatology

Authored by: Samantha Lemelin, RA

Medically reviewed by: Marc Shay, MD

Posted in Blog by Admin Server

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