Low-Carb Diets May Improve Acne

Updated at: Oct 19, 2011
Low-Carb Diets May Improve Acne

Having a low-carb diet for three months reduces acne.

Vatsal Anand
LatestWritten by: Vatsal AnandPublished at: Aug 17, 2011

SaladYou might have planned on taking low-carb diet for weight loss but new research has shown that it may treat your acne too. Although, the results of new studies are mixed, theoretically speaking, people with acne suffering from excess of insulin in their blood, can control it by eating low-carb food.

According to Alan R. Shalita, M.D, professor and chairman of the department of dermatology at SUNY Downstate Medical Center in New York, acne patients should be encouraged to take limited amount of carbs and especially be wary of overeating dairy products. He is also of the opinion that there are a lot of myths regarding the cause of acne. One such notion is that chocolate is the cause of acne. It’s the sugar in the acne that is the real culprit and studies have shown no relation between cocoa and acne.

The condition of excess insulin in the blood, called hyperinsulinemia and it has been found after research that foods with low glycemic index which are recommended in low-carb plans help to control blood sugar levels. Control of blood sugar has a direct bearing on occurrence of acne.

Four-fifth of people on the South Beach Diet that recommended low-carb diet showed improvement in their complexion with reduced acne. A large survey undertaken to determine the effect of dietary regimen on acne has shown positive results. Within 3 months of low-carb diet, acne was considerably reduced.

The survey respondents included many people who were on acne medication. 91 percent of them had to reduce the dose of medication or the amount of treatment from the time they started their diet. This research was headed by Panta Rouhani, Ph.D., working at University of Miami. She reported her findings with her colleagues at the meeting of American Academy of Dermatology.

The findings of her research state that low carb diet is not only an effective supportive diet for major acne therapies but it challenges the view held by many skin specialists that diet does not have a role to play in acne treatment. The positive results in improvement of acne after a low-glycemic diet would suggest that lifestyle factors pertaining to nutrition can be responsible for acne. This means that there might be need for further research for analysis on how each lifestyle-related factor such as nutrition, weight loss and exercise affect acne.


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