Does Diet Really Affect Acne?

H. R. Ferdowsian, MD, MPH; S. Levin, MS, RD

Disclosures

Skin Therapy Letter. 2010;15(3):1-2. 

In This Article

Conclusion

Population-based and migration studies have suggested a correlation between diet and acne. Large, well-controlled, observational studies have demonstrated that diets high in dairy products are associated with an increase in the risk for and severity of acne. Researchers have found significant associations between all varieties of cow's milk and acne. The relationship between milk and acne severity may be explained by the presence in dairy of normal reproductive steroid hormones or the enhanced production of polypeptide hormones such as IGF-1, which can increase androgen exposure, and thus, acne risk. Recent findings also describe an association between a high-glycemic-index diet and longer acne duration. In addition, randomized clinical trials have demonstrated that a low-glycemic-load diet can influence hormonal levels and improve insulin sensitivity and acne. No study has established a positive association between acne and chocolate, saturated fat, or salt intake.

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