Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Foods That Cause Hormonal Acne

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What Does Hormonal Acne Look Like

Dietitian FACT CHECKS the Hormonal Acne Diet: Is Food Causing Your Acne?!

Hormonal acne varies from person to person, but the location can be a telling sign. Hormonal acne usually flares up around your jaw and chin due to increased oil production, says Purvisha Patel, MD, FAAD, a board-certified dermatologist in Tennessee. Hormonal acne can look like anything from a whitehead, blackhead, papule, pustule, cyst, or nodule.

In women, hormonal acne typically presents with inflammatory lesions as well as comedones and deep nodules, Dr. DeRosa says. Late-onset acne typically has fewer lesions and is usually found in the U-zone .

Zinc Foods For Hormonal Acne

Foods for hormonal acne that contain zinc can be very beneficial. Zinc can help to enhance skin appearance and decrease acne due to its anti-inflammatory properties and it also can effectively reduce cutibacterium acnes which is a bacteria linked to acne production in the skin. Additionally, zinc can inhibit sebum secretion and production by its anti-androgenic property. Zinc foods for hormonal acne include meat, oysters, mussels, shellfish, beans, seeds, and nuts.

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Antioxidant Foods For Hormonal Acne

Antioxidants are chemicals that help to neutralize oxygen radicals in the body that contribute to oxidative damage. Oxidative damage from the radicals destroy cell DNA, damage lipids, and proteins and they cause inflammation. This inflammation can lead to acne production and irritation. This is why foods for hormonal acne contain antioxidants. Food sources include almost any fruit and vegetable, eggs, nuts, seeds, and dark chocolate.

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Why Men Shouldnt Decrease Testosterone Levels

If youre a man considering lowering your DHT levels, you might want to think again.

Trust me, I know that acne is difficult to live with. I cant tell you the lengths I would go through to have effortlessly clear skin. Still, one of the few things I wouldnt do is purposely lower DHT and testosterone levels.


  • DHT is necessary for proper sexual functioning, libido, etc.
  • Healthy levels of DHT and testosterone are helpful in preventing anxiety and depressionhttps://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1622749/
  • Improves mood and cognitive functionhttps://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22242144

I dont know if youve ever had low testosterone, but as someone who has, it feels horrible. You constantly feel groggy, slow, and blue. In my own personal experience, healthy levels of testosterone are truly necessary for happy day-to-day life as a male.

Obviously, youre free to do as you wish, but ask yourself this: Why decrease your quality of life by lowering testosterone levels when there are other, more important hormones to tackle first. Not only will you decrease acne, but youll feel better too. Its just not worth decreasing testosterone levels to fight acne when you dont have to.

I outline how to lower these hormones later in the article to jump to it.

Cow’s Milk May Lead To Acne Breakouts


While cow’s milk is a low-glycemic beverage, some studies suggest that drinking this type of milk may be linked to an increase in acne breakouts. In these studies, all types of cow’s milk have been linked to acne. Heres what the researchers discovered.

Milk and acne

In one study, women who drank 2 or more glasses of skim milk per day were 44% more likely to have acne than the other women in this study.

  • USA: 47,355 adult women were asked to recall what they ate during their high school years. Only cow’s milk was found to be linked to acne. Women who drank 2 or more glasses of skim milk a day were 44% more likely to have acne than others.5

  • USA: 6,094 girls, aged 9 to 15 years old, completed 2 lengthy questionnaires about their diet. The girls who drank the most cow’s milk were more likely to have acne.6

  • USA: 4,273 boys, aged 9 to 15 years old, completed 2 lengthy questionnaires about their diet. The boys who drank skim milk were more likely to have acne.7

  • Italy: 205 patients, aged 10 to 24 years old, who were seeing a dermatologist for moderate to severe acne, and 358 patients in the same age range who were seeing a dermatologist for another skin condition were asked what they ate. The patients with acne drank significantly more cow’s milk than the patients who did not have acne. There were no other differences in diet between the 2 groups of patients.8

Read Also: Can You Test Estrogen Levels

Why Does Acne Develop

For many including me thinking about teenage acne is a painful exercise. But its worth understanding why acne develops in the first place.

Acne is thought to develop because of a combination of factors: the production of too much oil in the skin, clogged skin pores, bacteria in the skin, and inflammation. Hormonal changes which occur during puberty, or with a condition called polycystic ovary syndrome and the menstrual cycle can have a big impact on acne, because they affect oil production in the skin. Some medications can cause acne , and hair products, makeup, and other products we put on our skin can contribute to clogged pores. Genetic factors, pollution, smoking, and stress have also been suggested as causes or contributors to acne.

And then there remains the possibility that diet matters. Certain foods can promote inflammation throughout the body, and its possible this triggers acne outbreaks. In addition, diet can affect hormones that, in turn, could make acne worse. For example, milk and foods with a high sugar content can cause a rise in insulin levels, altering other hormones that can affect the skin. Some research has linked milk and whey protein with acne.

Despite these possible connections between diet and acne, there is no consensus that changing your diet is an effective way to deal with acne.

Hormonal Acne Diet: The Best Foods That Help Hormonal Acne

Hormonal acne can be triggered by inflammation, high glycemic foods, and bacterial infection. As such, its important to create a hormonal acne diet thats rich in nutrient-dense and anti-inflammatory foods. Here are some of the best foods that help hormonal acne.

  • Fruits and vegetables
  • Omega-3 fatty acids, such as salmon and fatty fish, avocado, olive oil, nuts, and seeds
  • High-fiber foods, such as legumes and whole grains
  • Foods rich in zinc, like beef and oysters
  • Probiotic-rich foods, such as sauerkraut, kimchi, tempeh, and pickles

While these foods can help with hormonal acne, they may not be the solution for everyone. Encourage your client to keep a food diary and note any changes in symptoms so you can evaluate whats working or not working in their meal plan.

Read Also: Fda Approved Bioidentical Hormone Replacement

Foods And Beverages To Enjoy

  • Vegetables: broccoli, spinach, kale, peppers, zucchini, cauliflower, carrots, beets, etc.
  • Fruit: berries, grapefruit, oranges, apples, cherries, bananas, pears, grapes, peaches, etc.
  • Whole grains and starchy vegetables: Sweet potato, quinoa, butternut squash, farro, brown rice, oats, buckwheat, etc.
  • Healthy fats: whole eggs, olive oil, avocados, nuts, seeds, nut butters, coconut oil, etc.
  • Plant-based dairy alternatives: cashew milk, almond milk, coconut milk, coconut yogurt, etc.
  • High-quality protein: salmon, tofu, chicken, turkey, eggs, shellfish, etc.
  • Legumes: chickpeas, black beans, lentils, kidney beans, etc.
  • Anti-inflammatory herbs and spices:turmeric, cinnamon, black pepper, parsley, garlic, ginger, cayenne, etc.
  • Unsweetened beverages: water, sparkling water, green tea, hibiscus tea, lemon water, etc.

Foods That Cause Hormonal Acne

WORST FOODS FOR ACNE! Get Rid of Hormonal Acne Naturally Liah Yoo

The truth: So do hormonal breakouts.

After trying diet after diet, it can seem like an endless merry-go-round just to find an acne solution. If one diet manages to stop the acne storm, its only a temporary fix. The moment you get off track, the breakouts come back with a vengeance! How do I know?

It happened to me.

Its common for people to jump off track, life happens, stress takes over and you want the comfort foods .

Pizza, coffee with sugar and cream, chocolate, and ice-creamI literally had a stash at home filled with comfort foods. Usually following a clean diet, I had given myself permission to go a little crazy, because I needed something comforting, something good among the stress of running a business, being a full time mom and running a household all in a pandemic.

The problem? After a few consecutive months of healthy, beautiful, and glowing skin , my hard work disappeared! Seeing the first few pimples show up on my jawline after a few weeks of comfort foods, I was mortified! It was like all of my hard work went down the drain.

That is when I realized I needed to do some serious research about hormonal acne and find out everything I could to combat it. So here is a crash course on hormonal acne, the trigger foods, and the all-natural remedy that saved my skin!

Also Check: How To Avoid Hormonal Migraines

Hormone Balancing Diet: Get Support At Centrespringmd

At CentreSpringMD, all of our providers are well versed in hormonal acne and hyperandrogenism. We all know that a healthy diet helps to stabilize blood pressure and blood sugar levels, aid in weight loss. Surprisingly, eating healthy helps balance hormones.

Everyones body and health are different. We would be happy to help you with your condition, such as creating a personalized nutrition plan with foods for hormonal balance.

Book an appointment now with an expert integrative doctor at CentreSpringMD to get help with your hormonal acne and much more.


Also Check: How Do You Test For Low Testosterone

Hormonal Acne: Diet Dos And Donts

The exact role between diet and hormonal acne isnt fully understood. Some foods may help prevent acne particularly inflammation-fighting foods.

Plant-based foods high in antioxidants may help reduce inflammation and promote clearer skin. Omega-3 fatty acids may also decrease skin inflammation.

Contrary to popular belief, junk food alone doesnt cause acne. But overdoing it on certain foods may lead to increased inflammation.

You may consider limiting the following:

  • refined carbs, such as white bread and pasta

To clear up hormonal acne and keep it at bay its important to establish an appropriate skincare routine.

Read Also: How Does The Iud Affect Your Hormones

Traditional Treatments For Hormonal Acne

Unless your hormonal acne is mild, over-the-counter products usually arent successful.

This is because hormonal acne typically takes the form of cystic bumps. These bumps form deep under the skin, out of reach of most topical medications.

Oral medications can work from the inside out to balance your hormones and clear up the skin. Common options include oral contraceptives and anti-androgen drugs.

Can Nutrients Affect Acne

Diet and Acne: Discover the Top Seven Foods that Cause Acne

However it is very obvious that Hippocrates ancient but very wise statement should hold some truth when applied to acne, given that the most efficacious current therapies for acne are retinoids. Oral administration of isotretinoin or topical application of its isomer and natural retinoid, tretinoin, are used as anti acne therapies14,15 13-cis-retinoic acid is the only drug that targets all four pathogenic factors of acne and is the most efficient in sebum suppression.16 13-cis-RA is a retinoid that could derive from the metabolism of Vitamin A. Although several websites proclaim that it is found in small quantities naturally in the body without citing a reference,17 we know that at least the natural isomers of retinoic acid also affect the disease. With that in mind, we can certainly predict an association between diet and acne.

Therefore how could we ever rule out the possibility that diet has no effect on acne? Especially when diet influences the absorption of a nutrient or a drug that affects the mitigation of that disease? May be we cannot treat acne with nutrition but we can certainly influence it. Perhaps no single food does causes acne or effectively treats its symptoms, but certainly we can advocate that it could ameliorate or worsen its severity.

Read Also: Best Birth Control For Hormone Regulation

Top 10 Foods That Cause Acne

  • Hormone disruptors
  • High FODMAP foods
  • Histamine-rich foods
  • Histamine-releasing foods
  • Pro-inflammatory foods
  • Looking at the list, you might wonder if you now have to avoid almost every food group to get rid of your acne. Luckily, thats not the case. The foods you should avoid depend largely on your acne type. So dont worry its highly unlikely that you need to avoid all of them.

    The Ultimate List Of Foods That Cause Acne

    Do you ever get the feeling that something you ate made your acne worse, but cant really put your finger on what it was? And why is it that doing more research leaves you even more confused?

    Theres a really simple explanation behind this: what causes acne is completely unique to every individual. Thats why this article covers just about every food known to be associated with acne, categorized by its effect on your skin and acne

    So grab yourself a cup of coffee and sit tight.

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    Let North Valley Womens Care Help You Get Your Life Back On Track

    An imbalance in your hormones may increase your risk of obesity, diabetes, heart disease, and other health problems. Talk to us and learn more about it!

    North Valley Womens Care is here to provide top-quality, comprehensive medical services for all womens medical needs! We offer the Best Womens OBGYN in Phoenix, AZ.

    Contact us and book an appointment with us today to know!

    Have some questions? Share it through the comments below and we would love to answer it.

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    Acne Has Been Associated With Low Vitamin D Levels

    Foods to help hormonal ACNE ?

    Studies have linked low vitamin D levels to acne. Researchers theorize that due to the vitamins powerful anti-inflammatory properties, a deficiency in this nutrient may worsen acne symptoms .

    A study in 80 people with acne and 80 healthy controls found that vitamin D deficiency was detected in nearly 50% of individuals with the condition, compared with only 23% in the control group .

    Vitamin D deficiency was also correlated with acne severity, and a follow-up study showed that supplementing with 1,000 IU per day of vitamin D for 2 months significantly improved acne lesions in people who were deficient in this nutrient .

    Your medical provider can determine whether youre deficient in vitamin D and recommend an appropriate supplement dosage.

    Vitamin D supplements are widely available in stores and online.

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    Foods That Cause Acne And Breakouts

    Ever wake up in the morning to an unsightly pimple? Weve all been there. No matter your age, acne can flare up when you least expect and be the cause of much embarrassment. Whether youre heading to an important job interview, getting ready for a hot date or even just meeting friends for a night out its the last thing you want to see in the mirror. Despite many years of debate, recent studies prove that what you eat can play a significant role in the health and appearance of your skin with certain foods that can increase the frequency of your acne breakouts by as much as 10%. Although there are some great acne treatments out there, its also important to be aware of some of the primary acne-causing foods that are best to avoid!

    What These Research Findings Mean For You

    While more research is needed to know whether certain foods can worsen acne, there is something that you can do right now if you think your diet affects your acne.

    Dermatologists recommend that you pay attention to your breakouts, and ask yourself these questions:

    • Does any food or beverage seem to trigger a breakout or worsen your existing acne?

    • If something seems to trigger a breakout, what happens when you dont have that food or beverage for a day, a week, or a month?

    Also Check: Can Vyvanse Mess With Your Hormones

    Try Cutting Out Dairy And Whey Protein

    Its postulated that milk and dairy products promote insulin secretion and the production of hormones, such as IGF-1, which is known to be a major contributor to acne development .

    A review of 14 studies that included 78,529 children and adults aged 730 found that the intake of any dairy products, including milk, cheese, and yogurt regardless of the frequency or amount was associated with a greater risk of acne .

    Another review of 9 studies in 71,819 people showed that people who drank milk were 16% more likely to have acne than those who did not .

    Similarly, research indicates that consuming whey protein a milk-derived protein may be associated with acne.

    One 2-month study in 30 people aged 1845 observed that the use of whey protein was linked to the onset of acne (

    26 ).

    Filling your plate with colorful vegetables and fruits is another way to tame inflammation and reduce acne symptoms. These foods deliver anti-inflammatory antioxidants and other vital skin-supportive nutrients, such as vitamin C, to your body .

    Considering that acne is closely linked to Western diets high in processed foods, choosing whole foods and limiting or avoiding highly refined products is important when trying to treat your acne through diet .


    Controlling blood sugar, limiting or cutting out dairy and whey protein, and following a whole-food-based, nutrient-dense diet are some of the best ways to treat your acne naturally.

    Therefore, its best to eat whole, nutritious foods.

    Milk And Many Other Dairy Products

    I got a lot of people requesting I talk about acne. Acne (can) be ...
    • Adverse effects of dairy on the gastrointestinal system.
    • Increased inflammation from lactose intolerance.
    • Impaired absorption of beneficial nutrients due to GI distress.
    • Abnormally high levels of some hormones, particularly testosterone, in many low-fat dairy products.
    • Antibiotic residues that can lead to antibiotic resistance and microbiome disruption
    • Bacterial contamination from cows with mastitis, and/or fecal contamination.
    • Pesticide residues.
    • Excess iodine in dairy.

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