An acne eruption can be a huge problem for almost 80% of people at least once in their lifetime. Ever wondered that even diet and lifestyle could help us to cope up with this problem? The right diet and healthy lifestyle are as important as the right skin care routine and also the expert dermatologist’s advice to combat this problem. Before starting up with what to incorporate in our diet to combat acne lets first take a peek into the problem itself.
What is acne?
Acne is defined as a condition where pores of the skin get clogged with oil, dirt, or bacteria leading to cause inflammation. There can be multiple contributing factors to acne, but the major culprits resulting in this havoc are the imbalanced hormones, bacterial growth, or excess of sebum production.
Does diet play a role in causing acne?
Yes! Diet has a major contribution to this condition. Many recent studies have been done proving that diet does contribute a lot in improving this condition. Acne occurs due to clogging of pores from impurities, dead skin cells, acne bacteria, or all of them. Clogging can also happen as a result of excess sebum production by the body. Clogging can lead to inflammations and cause pimples. The insulin-like growth factors (IGF-1) is produced in high quantity in the body during puberty, which is found to be involved in excessive sebum production and thus worsening the acne symptoms. Certain foods are also responsible for increasing IGF-1 level in the body and hence making sure you cut them down from your diet, will be helpful to improve this condition.
A perfect diet to halt acne
A lot of studies have been performed to correlate acne and diet. It is been concluded that low sugar balanced diet is perfect to regulate hormonal balance in body and hence reduce inflammation because of low sebum production. Important points to incorporate while designing a diet plan for acne prone skin are as following:
1) Drink plenty of water: Staying hydrated is the topmost priority in any nutritious and balanced diet. Our body composition is made up of 60 percent water, so we require enough water to keep our body functioning properly. Very often, people mistake thirst for hunger, and thus imbalance the calorie intake on a daily basis. So, whenever you feel the urge to eat, then drink water first. It is the foundation to attain healthy, clear, and glowing skin. Make sure you have at least 8 to 10 glasses of water intake daily.
2) Low-glycemic diet: Most of the people talk about low glycemic diets while complaining about acne breakouts. What does this exactly mean? Glycemic index is referred to as relative ranking of carbs in the food we consume, which directly impacts the sugar level in our blood. So, consumption of high glycemic index food will lead to an elevation in IGF-1 in our blood, which in turn will spike up production of sebum by the sebaceous glands present in the skin resulting in acne breakouts. To cut down the high glycemic index food in your diet, look out for processed foods with refined sugar content in them and delete them from your diet. It is best to opt for whole grains, legumes, seeds, nuts, fruits, and beans. While choosing fruits, opt for less ripe fruits in comparison to more ripe fruits as more ripe fruits have a high glycemic index.
3) 'Say No' to processed food: Processed food always tends to have a high content of salt, sugar, and fats than the basic requirement of the body. Instead, opt for fresh ingredients in your kitchen and cook using them as they tend to be healthier and you have complete control on what you want to add into the recipe with a defined quantity. Further cooking at home is healthier and cheaper.
4) Ditch your dairy and switch to Greek yogurt: Dairy contains high sugar content in the form of lactose. Many recent studies have shown that dairy consumption is linked to acne flare-ups. So, strikeout dairy from your list and strike in sugar-free Greek yogurt to compensate the calcium, protein, and probiotics in your meal.
5) Dark chocolate: We all crave for chocolates, though we all know chocolates are not our skin’s best friend. But we do have a solution to this too. Dark chocolates are there for our rescue without doing any harm to the skin. They are healthiest with relatively low sugar content in them. It also contains zinc, which is one of the best-known acne fighting trace mineral. So, whenever you crave for chocolates relish dark chocolate.
6) Zinc-rich diet: Zinc is a micronutrient which is crucial for skin development and maintaining its proper functioning. Zinc is very effective in fighting against acne bacteria too. It’s been witnessed that when you consume zinc orally, it significantly lowers the inflammation. Zinc-rich food that you can add to your diet on a daily basis includes, spinach, chicken, sesame seeds, mushroom, pumpkin seeds, and so on.
7) Omega 3 fatty acid: They are witnessed to reduce acne severity because of their anti-inflammatory action when included in the diet. This is the majorly found in protein-rich food items like fish, egg, and a couple of plant sources.
8) Enrich diet with antioxidants: Consuming the diet rich in antioxidants can prepare skin to battle against the damages that can be done by sun exposure and pollution. Research has suggested that antioxidants tend to reduce the time an acne breakout can last. It can also reduce the size and pain caused by the lesions. Berries are filled in with antioxidant, so add them up in your diet.
9) Vitamin C: Strawberries, gooseberries, oranges, lemons, melons, and tomatoes all are enriched with vitamin C and are well known to boost up the immune system and thus strengthen the cell wall. Thus they contribute in preventing acne scarring and activating the healing power to improve irritated and damaged skin.
10) Vitamin E: Food items like nuts, almonds, soybeans, eggs, and green leafy vegetables are rich in Vitamin E, which helps protect skin from damage and scarring caused by acne. The easiest way to add Vitamin E in your daily diet is by drizzling olive oil while cooking or on the salad.
11) Green tea: Sipping green tea once a day helps fighting acne by reducing inflammation due to its anti-oxidant properties. Whenever in doubt, consult your dermatologist and get your diet designed to reduce acne and the damage caused by it.
Keep Healthy Keep Glowing!