The researchers have concluded that a high glycemic index/glycemic load diet and frequent dairy consumption are the main factors in establishing the link between diet and acne.
For generations, dermatologists, researchers, moms, and the media have gone back and forth on the issue that whether acne breakouts are caused by diet or not. When I was growing, the perceived wisdom was that chocolate and french fries were the major cause of acne, and when I was in college, the pendulum swung the other way round and the word had it that teenagers were going to get acne regardless of what they eat. Teenage means pimples!
Studies conducted in Europe and Australia have suggested that there is an acne-food connection, but not for the reasons we initially thought. It turns out that it isn’t just the grease in these foods, but rather a function of their high-glycemic carbohydrate content.
It turns out that a dairy-rich diet of highly processed and junk foods heavy in refined carbohydrates tend to be very high glycemic. The studies show that when cultures with diets that formerly consisted only of freshly prepared foods switched to high-glycemic, processed, convenience foods and sugary soft drinks, their acne statistics exploded. A famous Australian study on acne in 2005, showed that teenage boys on a low-glycemic diet, observe a significant reduction in their acne incidence and severity.
So, if you’re a teenager or an acne-prone adult, I’m going to suggest that you cut down on full-fat dairy products and put yourself on a healthy, low-glycemic diet featuring plenty of fresh produce for at least four weeks to see the results. Try to keep your daily glycemic number total under 55.
One thing I want to make clear is; studies are not saying that high glycemic and dairy foods cause acne. Rather, they are statistically likely to increase the tendency of developing acne that is already there (including the hormonal upheavals of adolescence, menopause, or stress). However, the correlation between wholesome food and clear skin is enough motivation to eat healthier. After all, your face is your identity!
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