Eat This! Don’t Eat That!
You’ve heard the adage … You Are What You Eat! When it comes to acne, a healthy diet can be very important to helping you get acne under control.
Research has shown definitive links between your dietary intake and acne. And it’s actually quite simple!
A diet that is comprised of fresh fish & seafood, fresh & grilled vegetables, culinary herbs and fresh fruits provides your body with essential vitamins, minerals, proteins, fatty acids and nutrients that will help you combat acne.
There’s an adage … Shop The Perimeter. Notice when you shop at the supermarket that all of the fresh produce, fish & seafood and meats are located on the perimeter of the store. All the processed, canned, prepackaged foods are in the center aisles. So … Shop The Perimeter .. and you’ll be certain to be buying fresh, healthy foods that will help improve your acne!
Balance Your Fats!
An imbalance in Omega-3 and Omega-6 fats is known to cause inflammation. And, acne is an inflammatory condition! Most people get 10 time mores Omega-6 in their diet and 1/2 times less Omega-3 than is optimal. That imbalance contributes to inflammation!
Use less vegetable oils such as corn and canola oil when you cook. Instead try cooking with coconut oil. Buy beef and eggs from animals that ate while roaming in pastures, rather than animals that were corn-fed. Finally, eat more fish rich in omega-3s, such as salmon and mackerel, and considering taking Omega-3 fish-oil supplements.
Here’s a recipe for an Acne Elixer that we recommend to all of our clients. Combine equal parts Tomato Juice, Carrot Juice, Coconut Milk and a tablespoon of Safflower Oil. It is best if you use fresh vegetables and blend the ingredients in a juicer. Tasty! You get lycopenes from tomatoes, beta-carotenes from carrots, essential fatty acids – alpha-linoleic & linolenic from coconuts and safflower oil. Research has shown that people suffering from acne are deficient in these essential compounds.
See our post on Green Tea and how drinking 3 to 5 cups per day of freshly-brewed Green Tea can help reduce your acne!
Don’t Eat That!
Milk & Dairy Products
There’s no definite link between dairy and acne, but the two may be related. Milk contains components related to the hormone testosterone that may stimulate oil glands in the skin, setting the stage for acne.
Studies have shown an association between dairy and acne. While these studies don’t show a definitive cause and effect, and they don’t prove that dairy causes acne, many people have observed that their acne decreases significantly when they reduce their consumption of milk & dairy products.
Try cutting out dairy from you diet for a month. If you find that your skin clears up after you cut out dairy, see if you can have a little without breakouts. If there is no change then you know that diary consumption is likely not a contributing factor to your acne.
High Glycemic Index Foods
The glycemic index is a way of measuring effects of sugar in foods on your blood sugar. High-glycemic foods raise your blood sugar higher than low-glycemic foods.
Some high-glycemic foods include white breads or pasta, rice, and baked goods, sugars, soft drinks.
If you like pasta … There’s a alternative! Eat pasta made from Quinoa (pronouned “Keenwa”). Tastes the same as flour pasta, but Quinoa, a grain from South America, is a Super Food containing 29 grams of protein per serving and no fat!
Some low-glycemic foods are vegetables, fruits, and whole grains.
Some research suggests that insulin may play a role in acne. In a 2007 study of 43 teenage boys and young men with acne, some ate a diet including foods with a low glycemic load, a measure of how foods affect people’s blood sugar levels, and others ate a carbohydrate-heavy diet without being concerned about their glycemic index. Those who ate the special low glycemic load diet had more improvement in their acne!
Gluten is a protein in wheat and other grains (oat, barley, rye, spelt) that makes bread dough sticky. It’s also in a number of places you don’t expect: imitation meats, soy sauce, ketchup and ice cream, among others.
In sensitive individuals, gluten acts in two ways.
First, it alters the integrity of the gut, creating cracks in the gut lining that allow toxins to recirculate back into the system.
Second, because gluten-sensitive people cannot properly digest gluten, these large molecules enter the bloodstream, and the immune system recognizes them as invaders, activating an immune response that increases inflammation, which in turn can result in acne. This kind of immune response also triggers the release of insulin, which results in raised hormone levels, another cause of acne!