Does Diet Really Impact Acne?

Sep 02, 2023
Does Diet Really Impact Acne?
When you have acne, you'll do almost anything to control it, including changing what you eat. Read on to learn the real impact that your diet has on acne and what steps you need to take to get clearer skin.

Acne affects about 50 million people every year. If you're among this population, you may have heard that you should avoid chocolate, dairy, or fatty foods to minimize your outbreaks. While food and diet don't directly cause acne, there is some evidence that diet can influence the frequency and severity of acne cases. 

At North Pacific Dermatology, we see many patients with acne and offer proven treatments, including AviClear®. Here's what we want our patients to know about the connection between diet and acne. The relationship between the two is not as clear-cut as you might think. There is no one diet that everyone should follow to guarantee acne-free skin. Individual responses to diet can vary – what triggers breakouts for one person might not affect another similarly.

Diet and acne: The evidence

As dedicated dermatologists, our commitment lies in delivering evidence-based insights. While the relationship between diet and acne is complex and multifaceted, the good news is that groundbreaking research has shed light on certain connections.

Studies suggest that diets with a high glycemic index, characterized by foods rapidly raising blood sugar levels, might contribute to acne flare-ups. Much of the Western diet is made up of these high-sugar foods, including white bread, sugary snacks, and sweetened beverages.

These high-glycemic foods can trigger an insulin spike, setting off events that could worsen acne.

Emerging research suggests that dairy products, particularly those with high levels of hormones, might contribute to acne development in some people. Hormones found in dairy can stimulate the skin's oil glands and lead to clogged pores. However, it's important to note that not everyone experiences the same effects. If you suspect dairy impacts your skin, consider reducing its consumption and consulting our office for personalized guidance.

Finding nutritional harmony

Before purging your pantry of every sweet delight and dairy product, remember that a balanced diet remains vital for overall well-being. Cutting out entire food groups without proper guidance could lead to nutritional deficiencies that might inadvertently affect your skin's health.

Instead of extreme measures, consider a middle ground. Incorporate whole foods, fresh fruits and vegetables, lean proteins, and healthy fats into your diet. Hydration is also key – drinking enough water can help maintain skin's elasticity and overall appearance.

Personalize your choices

Just as you have unique skin, your dietary needs and triggers vary. What works for one person might not be effective for another. If you need clarification about the connection between your diet and acne, talk to our team, who can provide personalized guidance based on your skin type, medical history, and dietary preferences.

The relationship between diet and acne is not clear-cut. While research indicates that certain dietary factors might influence acne, a one-size-fits-all approach isn't the solution. Maintaining a balanced diet, staying hydrated, and adopting a comprehensive skincare routine remain cornerstones of healthy skin.

If you're struggling with acne, contact our office to set up a consultation. Call today or use this website to set up your consultation at any of our offices in Arcata or Crescent City, California. We'll evaluate your case and create a comprehensive, customized treatment plan to help you get clearer, more radiant skin.