What you eat has a huge effect on the health of your skin. You may be using all the right skincare products and getting enough professional treatments but if your diet is not up to scratch your skin will suffer for it regardless of your home regimen.
9 times out 10 acne sufferers are eating too much acne triggering foods, and not getting the right minerals and vitamins necessary for skin health. If you are using the right products for your skin condition and you are still suffering with acne breakouts you probably need to take a good look at your diet. Keep a food diary for at least 3 weeks and cut all of the following acne triggers out of your diet. Using the process of elimination slowly reintroduce these foods back into your diet in order to find what your trigger is.
This is a big one. Removing foods like milk, cheese and other dairy products can dramatically reduce your acne. Its all down to a growth hormone called IGF-1 found in dairy products. Our body reacts to this hormone by cranking up insulin production which in turn results in our skin producing excessive oil or sebum, creating a breeding ground for acne causing bacteria and trapping sebum in our pores so that dead skin cells cannot exit naturally. If you suffer with acne opt for alternative products such as unsweetened almond, coconut milk or soy milk. Yoghurt is a great way of acquiring probiotics, but is also a major acne trigger. Instead, take a pro-biotic supplement such as Acidophilis or Bifidobacteria. This will help to maintain digestive health and remove the need for dairy in the diet.
Whether you eat an apple or a slice of cake, our body treats all forms of sugar the same. The sugars are broken down into glucose which cranks up our insulin levels. Digested sugar attaches itself to the collagen fibers in our skin, a process known as glycation. This increases inflammation and exacerbates acne. Aim for a low glycemic diet to to reduce sugar intake. If you need to have fruit always opt for fresh and organic and avoid fruit juices. Stay away from chocolate, pastries, jam, pre-packed snacks, white bread and pasta. If you crave something sweet try to stick to low amounts of raw honey or maple syrup.
Just like with sugar and dairy, chocolate is a processed food that, when eaten. spike our insulin levels and cause inflammation. Opt instead for chocolate in its natural state – cacao or cocao. This raw form of chocolate is packed with antioxidant vitamins A, C and E and skin loving minerals such as zinc, magnesium, chromium and tryptophan.
4. Spicy food:
Inflammatory food such as chillies, onions, peppers, garlic and hot sauces raise our bodies temperature, causing our skin to flush and exacerbate acne symptoms.
Alcohol tends to have a lot of sugar added. This has an effect on our insulin and sebum production. It reduces the power of our immune system which makes it harder for our body to remove acne causing bacteria.