Wondering how you can make your acne-fighting regime just a little more effective? While topical treatments focus on the outside of your skin, you might want to turn your attention to fighting acne from the inside too.
When looking for an acne diet, you want to focus on a low in sugar diet with lots of green vegetables. Your goal is to reduce inflammation and make sure your hormones are balanced and at healthy levels. With that in mind, here are some tips that we think are important for an acne-fighting diet.
1. Drink alcohol moderately, and choose what you drink wisely.
Sugar can wreak absolute havoc on our bodies and contributes to the inflammation and increased insulin that contribute to acne. Many cocktail mixers contain a ton of processed sugar, so avoid them. From the spirits, tequila, mezcal, and vodka are lower in sugar than bourbon. Dry red wine is a good choice as it is lower in sugar, and at least you get antioxidants!
2. Eat foods high in antioxidants.
A diet that is high in antioxidants can help to clear up acne breakouts. How do you know which foods contain antioxidants? Every single vegetable contains antioxidants, so eat a lot of them!
Zinc is a specific antioxidant that’s been proven to have a positive effect in reducing acne inflammation. You can find it in lamb, grass-fed beef, pumpkin seeds, lentils, spinach, and mushrooms. Zinc is also found in some dark chocolate, ideal as an acne-friendly dessert because it’s relatively low in sugar and contains no dairy and acne-fighting zinc. Niacinamide is a form of Vitamin B3 which has also been found to help acne. Good sources of dietary niacinamide are salmon, tuna, beef, chicken breast, mushrooms, avocado, and brown rice.
3. Curb dairy intake.
Did you know? Several good studies from 3 different countries have shown that cow’s milk can make acne worse, and skim milk is worse than whole. Switch to oat, almond, or soy milk. Yogurt does not seem to contribute to acne, nor do most cheeses as they are fermented which changes what they do in our bodies. Don’t stress out if the idea of giving up your latte makes you want to cry. Even reducing rather than eliminating milk will help.
In general, I believe in making moderate dietary changes that you can actually sustain rather than being fanatical about your diet. If acne is an ongoing struggle for you, adhering to an acne-friendly diet will help your other treatments be that much more effective. Talk to your dermatologist in one of our New York or New Jersey dermatologist’s offices, and we can help you develop a personalized plan to fight acne.