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Is There An Acne And Diet Connection?

May 20, 2008
As a common skin disorder, acne affects over ninety percent of the world's population at some time or other. It is the most widely treated skin disorder by dermatologists and strikes both teenagers and adults.

There are many different factors that contribute to acne including hormones, bacteria, and some genetic factors. It has even been suggested that acne is caused by a poor diet, which may hold some weight.

The acne and diet issue, as with most causes commonly attributed to acne outbreaks, has been studied for several years.

Even though some dermatologists claimed that diet has nothing to do with the formation of acne, many still hold that acne and diet are indeed linked as diet plays a role in the development of acne.

Here's a short explanation that will develop a relationship between acne and diet.

It has been suggested for many years that eating refined carbohydrates and sugar can cause acne outbreaks. It is proven however that eating these foods leads to a surge of insulin as well as an insulin-like growth factor known as IGF-1 in the body.

If this forms, it then can lead to an excess of male hormones, androgens, which are deemed as the most potent cause of the acne formation.

The acne and diet connection maintains that if an excess of male hormones is produced, the pores of the skin will secrete sebum or oil, which is a greasy substance that generally attracts the attention of acne causing bacteria.

In addition, this process triggers the IGF-1 to cause skin cells known as keratinocytes to duplicate and multiply, which in turn is a process related with the acne formation.

According to one acne study, the appearance of acne is triggered by some environmental factors including diet. This study conducted on the acne cases in islanders of Papua New Guinea and hunter-gatherers of Paraguay found out that limiting grains is an integral step toward optimizing your health, which led the researchers to think that no-grain diet is somehow beneficial for acne.

Also, getting sufficient essential fatty acids may be important in clearing acne. It is these fatty acids that help control the production of androgens, the hormones that surge during the teen years, which cause excess sebum oil to clog your hair follicle and contribute to creating acne.

Good sources of omega-3 oil include albacore tuna, avocados, dark leafy green vegetables (spinach, mustard greens, kale), hemp seeds, walnuts, wheat germ oil, pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, salmon and sardines.

As the acne and diet link continues as one of the hottest issues in the medical field, many have claim that there is too little research regarding the connection.

It has even been suggested that doctors and dermatologists only say that diet has nothing to do with acne because they can not sell you a healthy diet.

Perhaps diet is not the sole cause of acne but it never hurts to follow a good healthy diet plan as an overall health regimen.
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