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How to Get Rid of Acne Fast: Stop Eating These Pimple-Producing Foods

Updated on May 13, 2014

Do you struggle with acne breakouts no matter what product or practice you try? Do you feel like your pimples are problems you simply have to accept? Foods that cause acne are common in many diets of Americans and other industrialized nations, so it's no surprise that these countries struggle more with cases of skin blemishes than other cultures.

Acne is seen as a problem faced during adolescence, but chronic outbreaks are also common among adults over 25, especially women and even children.

Many of these cases can be treated by changing the diet to include whole, nutrient-dense foods while throwing out the processed grains and high-carbohydrate products.

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Acne is Not Just a Fact of Life

Like many other disorders that are common today, acne is a modern condition that primarily affects those who live in industrialized nations.

Traditional cultures aren't popping pimples--that is, of course, until they begin eating the refined foods of the West.

The Inuit are one example. As they changed from their native diet to one that included Western foods, observers noticed changes to the Inuits' skin health.

Doctors saw how their healthy, vibrant skin changed with the addition of foods similar to those found in today's supermarkets. Acne became as common among the Inuit as it was in the US. This pattern emerged in African cultures, as well.

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Refined Carbohydrates are High-GI Foods That Cause Acne

In one study, 43 men with acne disorders were followed over the course of 12 weeks in order to see if breakouts could be controlled with a change in diet.

Split into two groups, the first group of men were placed on a low-glycemic diet and the second was told to eat carbohydrates without referring to the glycemic index.

At the end of the study, the group that followed the low-glycemic diet had significantly fewer blemishes. They also lost weight, had reduced BMIs, and improved insulin sensitivity (better blood sugar levels).

Foods that cause acne are those that rate high on the glycemic index (GI). The GI ranks carbohydrates on a scale of one to 100: the higher the score, the more a food raises blood sugar levels.

Highly digestible carbohydrates, like wheat and sugar, have high GI rankings because they quickly spike blood sugar to high levels.

When your blood sugar levels become elevated, your body sends insulin in to bring them down to normal. When high GI foods are part of your regular diet, increasing amounts of insulin are required to get the job done. Your body continues to produce more insulin in order to normalize blood sugar levels.

Choose a clean diet for a clear complexion
Choose a clean diet for a clear complexion | Source

Foods That Cause Acne Stimulate Breakout Hormones: Insulin and IGF-1

Insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1) is produced when insulin levels are high. IGF-1 is a hormone that boosts the production of tissue in hair follicles and skin.

Together, insulin and IGF-1 stimulate the production of sebum, an oily substance that protects your skin.

Sebum is necessary for healthy skin, but this hormone imbalance creates too much of a good thing. The overgrowth of skin tissue caused by IGF-1 combined with excess sebum combine to form pimples.

Your morning bowl of cereal is a recipe for skin disasters. Combining dairy with carbohydrates leads to even higher blood sugar levels and subsequent insulin production.

Added hormones in dairy products may also stimulate acne breakouts by contributing to these imbalances.

Dairy products can also cause skin problems in many who are sensitive or allergic to milk proteins. Sometimes, the only way to determine if there is a sensitivity to dairy is to remove it from the diet for a certain period of time--usually at least 30 days--to see if there is any relief from symptoms or improvement in health.

To improve your complexion, remove the foods that cause acne from your diet. Refined foods, and sometimes dairy, elevate blood sugar levels and spur the production of pimple-producing hormones.

© Liz Davis 2012 How to Get Rid of Acne Fast

Have you noticed a change in your skin when you eat certain foods?

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