October 18, 2020

Did you know that the texture of your skin might be directly related to what you eat? Yes, you heard that right! Your diet is quite crucial, and that’s why today, we explore more on the best foods to keep your skin all smooth and glowing.

Acne is one skin condition that usually leaves marks and scars on your skin that you will certainly want to get rid of. The interesting thing is, you might not need expensive medications to prevent or handle that acne when it occurs. By just taking care of what goes into your mouth can work miracles on your acne.

But before we look at the best diet for acne-free skin, let’s first see how acne forms and what causes it.

How Do Acne Form?

Acne is a skin condition that usually forms as a result of clogged skin pores from bacteria, oil, and dead cells. This occurs when sebum, the oil that protects our skin from drying and cracking, is produced in excess and accumulates in the skin pores. The clogging then causes inflammation on the skin, pimples, and several other skin lesions.

Acne can occur at any part of the body, including:

  • Face
  • Shoulders
  • Neck
  • Chest
  • Back, etc.

Some of the common acne types include:

  • Whiteheads – these forms when pores are clogged, closes up, but sticks above the skin. They usually appear as hard bumps that are whitish in color.
  • Blackheads – with a blackhead, the pores are clogged, but they remain open instead of closing up. Blackheads appear as black spots on your skin.
  • Pimples – these also form due to excess oil production and bacteria build-up in the skin pores. They appear when a pore opens, permitting entry of oil, dead skin, and bacteria under the skin. They are usually reddish bumps, which are sometimes filled with pus.

Since the production of sebum is hormonally controlled, acne onset tends to be more prevalent during puberty. Several studies claim that the overproduction of IGF-1(Insulin-like growth factor 1) is responsible for the excess sebum production during puberty.

While the body can regulate the IGF-1 levels, it’s also good to note that some of the foods we consume can raise its levels. And for this reason, we need to take care of what we eat, as our diet can be the main cause of that persistent acne.


So, How Does Your Diet Influence Your Skin Texture?

One thing is certain! What we consume affects our skin. 

But how? 

Well, for starters, some foods will elevate your blood sugar levels more rapidly than others.

This rapid rise of blood sugar causes your body to produce more insulin in an attempt to control the sugar levels. While the insulin controls the sugar level in your blood, excess of this hormone can also lead to the overproduction of sebum. This sequence of events might, in the end, render your skin more susceptible to acne.

It is, therefore, quite essential for you to ensure that whatever you consume is well balanced. Understanding what is in your diet will help in that. 

Among the foods that can lead to such insulin spikes include:

  • Pasta
  • French fries
  • Sugar
  • White rice
  • Sugary drinks, including soda and juices
  • Flavored Yogurts
  • Processed cereals with extra sugar
  • White bread
  • Processed and baked food

Although you’re not forbidden to eat these foods, you should certainly moderate their consumption. This is because they contain simple sugars that will hike the levels of your blood sugar.

Some studies have also been conducted to evaluate the relationship between the typical American diet, known as the “Western diet,” and the occurrence of acne. The said diet comprises of:

  • Dairy products
  • High-glycemic carbohydrates
  • Trans fats
  • Saturated fats

The research whose findings were published in the “Journal of Clinical, Cosmetic and Investigational Dermatology,” found out that this kind of diet will easily lead to acne formation. This is because the foods trigger the release of certain hormones, which in return, stimulate the oil glands to produce excess oil.


Anti-Acne Foods that are Ideal for Your Skin

One way to escape the wrath of acne is by consuming low-glycemic food. A low GI diet comprises complex carbohydrates, which plays a crucial role in reducing your body’s blood sugar levels, and hence minimizing your chances of getting acne.

And, the low GI foods have more health benefits than just preventing the onset of acne. Some of these benefits include:

  • Enhanced weight loss,
  • Reduced heart disease risks
  • Lowering the risk of getting type 2 diabetes

NOTE: The glycemic index, abbreviated as GI, is a system of ranking foods containing carbs, with pure glucose taking the highest spot of 100. The rest of the foods are assigned numbers 0 to 99, with foods that have a higher effect on the body’s blood sugar taking upper spots.


The numbering system, which was an invention of Dr. David Jenkins, has three distinct levels:

  • The High GI: comprising of foods between 70 and 100
  • Mid-range GI – foods between 56 and 69
  • Low GI – foods with GI between 0 and 55

Some of the foods that contain these complex carbohydrates include:

  •  Legumes
  •  Whole grain
  • Unprocessed vegetables
  • Fruits

In addition to low GI foods, some other ingredients like, Zinc, Vitamin A, Vitamin E, and antioxidant chemicals are believed to offer numerous benefits to your skin. This is because they minimize inflammation.

Other foods that can offer enormous benefits to your skin include:

  • Brown rice
  • Peas and beans
  • Various leafy vegetables like spinach
  • Tomatoes
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Carrots
  • Whole-wheat foods
  • Pumpkin seeds
  •  Brown trice, etc.

One thing you should keep in mind, however, different bodies react differently to different foods. This means that unless you consult with your physician, you cannot say with certainty which foods are best to deal with your acne.


Evidence on the Effect of a Low GI diet on Acne

A research conducted by the American Academy of Dermatology published the following results:

  • USA

Here, the study placed 2,258 participants undertaking a weight loss program on a low GI diet. Besides helping the participants to reduce weight, it was noted that their acne improved significantly. Around 87% of these participants pointed out that they now had less acne, while 91% of the total patients, confirming their reduced need for medication.  

  • Australia

In Australia, a group of 43 males suffering from acne was placed on two different diets. One group consumed low GI foods while the other group was put on a normal diet for three months. After this period, the group on the low-glycemic diet showed significant improvement, way above the normal diet group.

  • Korea

The same study was done in Korea with 32 acne patients. One group was made to continue eating their usual foods, while the second group took the low GI diet for around ten weeks. The results at the completion of the ten weeks were amazing, with the group that was on a low-GI diet exhibiting less acne than the rest.

These studies show that low GI foods offer a great anti-acne diet that has significant effects in preventing and getting rid of your acne menace.


What to Do When the Acne Doesn’t Yield to Diet

Is the acne not yielding even after strictly following the anti-acne diet? Do not despair. There are other acne treatment methods you can try out. Some of the most effective ones include:

Silicone Gel Treatment

Silicone gel is an effective scar treatment method that can easily get rid of your recurring acne and acne scars. Some studies claim that using silicone treatments can help reduce the rough texture of the skin by even around 86%.

The silicone gel will act on your skin to:

  • Hinder any bacterial infections that might lead to clogging of skin pores
  • Regulate collagen production by influencing the growth factors
  • Keeping the skin hydrated

You can try out some incredible silicone products like the AWDMed Advanced Silicone Gel for scars.


Exfoliate Regularly

Exfoliation involves the removal of the skin’s top layer, consisting of the dead skin cells. You can physically use a scrub or a brush or chemically using an acid (prescribed by a doctor) to dissolve the dead cells.

By removing the dead skin cells, exfoliation unclogs the pores leading to smoother skin. Various studies suggest that a certain type of exfoliation known as microdermabrasion is quite effective in offering your smooth skin back. However, more studies are still underway to help offer even more clarification on the procedure’s efficacy.

Conclusion on the Best Anti-Acne Diet

Right from low GI foods, low dairy products, Vitamin A and E elements, minerals like Zinc, and foods rich in Omega-3 elements, the right diet can be the cure to your acne problem. However, before deciding to shift to an anti-acne diet, ensure that you have your doctor’s approval.

Remember, the best diet for acne-prone skin will vary for different individuals, with some foods working better with some people.

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