You may commonly notice how zits start to appear after you’ve indulged in foods like chocolates, fried food and spicy food. But foods don’t actually “cause” acne – this is a myth.
Acne is caused by the blockage of your pores by excess sebum, dead skin cells and bacteria, and when inflammation happens, a bump with redness and pus comes up.
However, while your diet doesn’t have a direct correlation to the appearance of pimples, there are foods that can potentially escalate inflammation and trigger acne. The foods may or may not have such an impact on you, but if it’s always good to make a mental note especially if you spot a relationship between your diet and your skin’s condition. Here are five usual suspects, particularly for those with acne-prone skin:
#1: Acne-Trigger – Sugar
If you have acne-prone skin, it’s time to cut down on sugar. A pro-inflammatory food, indulging in high-sugar foods like doughnuts can trigger breakouts. If you have a sweet tooth, opt for alternative sweeteners like honey instead.
#2: Acne-Trigger – Bread
Say goodbye to muffins and croissants if you want to keep your breakouts in check, because wheat causes inflammation. These yummy produce also tend to contain lots of sugar, so go easy on them if you have acne-prone skin.
#3: Acne-Trigger – Dairy
Cleopatra may bathe in milk to keep her skin looking radiant and feeling soft. However, the American Academy of Dermatology has discovered a link between consuming dairy products and the appearance of acne. Unlike sugar and wheat that cause inflammation, milk can trigger acne because of the hormones in it. Instead of cow’s milk, consider rice milk as an alternative.
#4: Acne-Trigger – Spicy food
Those who can’t give up sambal may sometimes find themselves breaking out after indulging in some hot, spicy cuisine. Spicy food can cause a inflammatory reaction in the body as you sweat it out over spicy food, causing an increase in body temperature. The perspiration triggers the production of sebum that can get trapped by the pores and when it interacts with bacteria, they make a potent recipe for pimples.
#5: Acne-Trigger – Peanuts
Swap peanuts for almonds if you love to snack on some nuts for tea. An androgen that’s present in peanuts can trigger acne by increasing sebum production, making your face oilier – definitely not a good thing for those with acne-prone skin.
Don’t feel depressed about cutting these foods from your diet. Introduce and replace these five foods that can help suppress inflammation instead:
#1: Acne-Fighter – Fatty Fishes
Fish like salmon, mackerel and sardines are a great source of fatty acids such as omega-3 and omega-6, which can help reduce inflammation in our bodies. Sushi, anyone?
#2: Acne-Fighter – Avocado
Avocado isn’t just tasty, is a source of vitamin C, but can also reduce inflammation in your skin. Rich in vitamin E, it can also help with the overall moisturisation of your skin.
#3: Acne-Fighter – Garlic
This may not be the best food for your breath but it is one that can help fight inflammation. Fortified with allicin, a chemical can kill bacteria and viruses, this is also your companion for keeping inflammation that cause acne in check.
#4: Acne-Fighter – Alfalfa Sprouts
Packed with live enzymes that can help fight inflammation, these may not look the most appetising, but they’d do good for acne-prone skin.
#5: Acne-Fighter – Water
Last, but not least, having adequate hydration is key to fighting acne. With 70% of our body made up of water, getting sufficient hydration helps to flush out toxins and waste products, which includes bacteria trapped within the body. Our skin, which is the largest organ of our body definitely requires water to function and heal properly.