Can Your Diet Cause Acne?

Pacific Dermatology Specialists acne-causing diet Can Your Diet Cause Acne?

Blackheads, whiteheads, cystic pimples -- all types of acne can be frustrating. If you’re struggling to clear up acne prone skin, it’s easy to feel discouraged. However, a dermatologist can help you pinpoint the cause of your acne and recommend treatment. And in some cases, a change in your diet might help.

Can Your Diet Cause Acne?

You may have heard that eating greasy, fried foods causes oily skin and acne. However, this isn’t exactly true. Studies show that there might be a link between high-glycemic foods and more breakouts, rather than simply greasy snacks. High-glycemic foods include items like white pasta and sugary snacks, which quickly increase your blood sugar when you eat them. The same goes for beverages.

Experts note that blood sugar increases caused by high-glycemic foods may lead to inflammation in the body and an increase of oil production in the skin. Both of these changes can lead to acne. So, eating a low-glycemic diet may keep acne in check. Low-glycemic foods include vegetables, berries, legumes, and whole grains.

There is also evidence to suggest that cow’s milk may also be linked to acne, but experts aren’t sure exactly why. Some theories point to the hormones in milk causing inflammation, but a definitive answer would require more research. However, keep in mind some dairy products, yogurt, and cheese have not been found to cause an increase in acne.

While a wholesome and nutritious diet may be the key to healthy skin, your doctor can help you create a diet plan that works for you.

What Else Causes Acne?

When discussing what causes acne, it’s important to note that diet is only a portion of the equation. Acne can have a number of causes, including:

  • Hormones: Changing hormone levels can cause worsening acne. This may occur during puberty, menstruation, pregnancy, and menopause.
  • Genetics: You may be more likely to experience acne if it runs in your family.
  • Hygiene: Acne occurs when hair follicles are blocked with dead skin cells and oil. If you use equipment like bike helmets and sports equipment without washing your face, you may notice more acne as oil builds up.
  • Cosmetics: Some types of makeup and personal care products can clog your pores, causing acne. So, be sure to choose products that are non-comedogenic.

Many individuals with acne will experience breakouts due to a variety of factors, and it can take time to figure out the cause. This is why it’s important to see a dermatologist for professional acne treatment.

What Are Your Treatment Options?

While changing your diet may play a role in eliminating acne, there are other treatments that can help. Dermatologists often recommend topical treatments like benzoyl peroxide and retinoids to clear up acne. Products that contain antibiotics and ingredients like salicylic acid can also be effective. Your dermatologist can work with you to develop a consistent skin care routine using these products.

Individuals with severe acne may benefit from oral medications like antibiotics, contraceptives, and isotretinoin. Dermatologists may also recommend that patients with moderate to severe acne undergo in-office procedures like chemical peels and laser treatments. These treatments can also be beneficial for those with acne scars. Your doctor will likely want to see you regularly to assess your progress and adjust treatments if necessary.

If you’re wondering how to clear up acne, visit the team at Pacific Dermatology Specialists. Our knowledgeable experts can diagnose your acne and recommend targeted treatments. We have locations in Long Beach, CA and the surrounding area. Contact us to make an appointment at an office closest to you.

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