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What is the Diet for Acne? –Part 1: “Diet can be the Cause and Cure for Acne”-A Testimony

The testimonial for this post is kindly contributed by my niece, Amrita Choudhury, Ph. D. Student, Earth Resources and Environmental Engineering, Hanyang University, Seoul, South Korea.

“There exists a beautiful skin underneath always, no matter how badly infected your skin is with acne sores”. By Anonymous

Woman with a beautiful skin

What is the diet for acne that can help unveil the healthy and beautiful architecture of your skin? Is there really one!

Does it sound bizarre that diet could banish acne? Doesn’t the concept of diet cure acne sound as disturbing as acne?

The simple reason I am thinking these questions is due to the fact that the cost of acne treatment in America far exceeds 3 billion dollars. Just to let you aware of the fact that 50 million Americans are suffering from this depressing skin disorder.

Is it not a fact that if a clearly defined diet would be there for curing acne then this cost will drastically plummet? Certainly, diet will be a lot cheaper and pervasive way to go for acne free skin.

I went through rigorous research to find whether our diet has a role and how big is a diet in regard to acne prevalence and cure.

Let’s delve in and find it out!

Based on the causes of acne, it is logical to comprehend that the repertoire of a preferred acne free diet will be an assemblage of food with no hormone or precursor, eliminating inflammation, rich in anti-oxidant, food that modulate immunity and sustain healthy gut bacteria as the foundation of the diet.

There are researches linking food and prevalence of acne but more research is required (this will be part-2 and the following post). The message from the research community to the world is- “The question of what the impact of diet is on the course of acne vulgaris still remains unclear”. “The jury is out there” and more research is necessary to firm and solidify the association of food with acne.

In that context, I like to share a testimonial from my 23-year-old niece. She affirms:

“The diet can be the cause and cure of acne”.

It is just one person’s statement but seems to be a strong one. Let’s have this post with her testimonial. It might be just one person’s testimonial but a strong one per my analysis. I hope it will help someone out there.

She was once a victim of acne and has recovered completely without any medication.

The blog will be about her testimonial:

  • Overview of Appearance and Disappearance of Acne
  • The Why
  • The diet that Caused Acne
  • The diet that Cured Acne
  • Takeaway

Overview of Appearance and Disappearance of Acne

Let me share you with a testimonial from my niece how she got acne from her diet. I see a connection of diet with acne and personally endorse her testimony.

Appearance and Disappearance of Acne-Diet-Swap

Around two years back, with all her excitements, my 23-year-old niece moved to a historic tech city (not disclosing the name because people might be sensitive), a city of tech-savvy professionals in India for a 1-year appointment. The better attraction for her was the exotic all spicy and delicious Mughlai food, that the city is famous, known and the food she was craving for. She landed the city of her dream and was very happy starting out there.

After ~6 months or so, her happiness went away with the pimples on her glowing and smooth face. She was virtually panicking when I spoke with her then. It was no wonder. She was in a marriageable age and guys were visiting to see her for an arranged marriage. You can imagine her depressing internal feeling.

She has no family history of pimples and bumps for at least two generations as far as she knows of. The pimples were a nuisance. More importantly, she never saw acne during her puberty. The weather is quite similar in the city she traveled to and where she traveled from. She could not blame it as a cause for this frustrating skin disorder.

She was lucky, in the sense that the appointment was only for 1 year. With her pimple cluttered forehead, she returned to her native place finishing her term in the city. She then lived there which is a small village. Surprisingly, after 3-4 months of staying in the village, her pimples got cleared from her skin.

Now she had to move to Seoul, South Korea to further her education. She took a few days off before flying out and paid a visit to meet her cousin. They ended up eating a lot of fast food for a few days. It was a huge enjoyment for them. But the consequence was bad for my niece.

She got some break out again on her face. This is her second breakout. This time, time was not in her favor to stay home. There was a deadline to arrive in Seoul to start the semester. So she traveled to Seoul to further her education. After a few months at Seoul, her skin got cleared with no pimples (picture of her face before and after is attached at the lower end of this post).

She is been living with her gorgeous acne free skin for the last 8-9 months.

The Why

Not everyone living in the aforementioned dream city is suffering from acne.

My niece’s accommodation was in a low-cost dormitory with food included. It was based on her small paying one year lob. That is the most she could afford.

The quality of the food in the dorm was far from what she was craving for. Those Mughlai foods were way expensive and out of reach for her because of the poor budget and could buy only a few times.

The daily diet from the dorm that she gets there comes from ingredients like white rice, vegetable oil with high omega-6 content. Food typically was cooked using a huge amount of hot chili, little peanuts, and tamarind. A minimum amount of lentils and vegetables were used to keep up with the high cost.

The major portion of the breakfast, lunch, and dinner was either boiled white rice or food and snacks made from powdered white rice. She had a bowel movement that was reflective of no fiber. The curries make her eyes and mouth burn because of the huge amount of red-hot chili used in cooking. The weather was extremely hot with no air conditioning. I am mentioning it for clarity but weather probably did not count toward the break out as you will see later.

Acne showed up from nowhere within six months or so under this kind of situation and continued to stay until her 1-year term (thank God! it was just for 1 year) ended.

It was time to say goodbye to the city (now turned to the city of horror! for her). She took the 90-minute flight back home.

She lived in her own house which was in a rural area. The food was mostly coming from the back yard and much care was taken which oil is being used in cooking. The typical food is brown rice, homegrown organic lentils, and vegetables. The family follows a very simple cooking style and use high-quality healthy oil, ghee and with healthy spices. Fish, chicken, and eggs were used a few times in a week but they are organic.

Acne mostly disappeared and appeared again when she visited her cousin and enjoyed the time with a huge amount of fast food.

Then she had to move to Seoul, South Korea to further her career. She lived there entirely with a different version of foods-it is lots of greens, kimchi, grilled chicken, not oily and spicy etc. In a few months, he got back her healthy and pimple free skin.

The ultimate and very useful information is she could reverse her situation swapping her high GI and more inflammatory Omega-6 diet to a healthier version of food: low GI brown rice, oil rich in omega-3, fresh organic veggies, lentils and then again with Korean food.

The diet that Caused Acne (During the Dormitory Living)

White rice

Rice cakes

Fried snacks from rice powder

Processed vegetable Oil

Soybean oil

Curries are extremely oily with little vegetable in it

Soups are oily and spicy with red chili and use and contain a small amount of beans per head

Hormone-treated broiler eggs and chicken are supplied in curry from

No desserts are given

Yogurt (made from buffalo milk)

Road-Side Indian Fast-Food Caused Acne

Pani Puri

Samosas Chat

Ice cream

Cold coffee

Masala Chat

The Diet that Cured Acne (Living at Home)

Brown rice

Oats and broken wheat, Dalia

Farm fresh organic vegetables

Fresh picked organic mixed greens

Homemade organic yogurt (cow milk)

Omega-3 rich oil and ghee, coconut oil

Seasonal fresh fruits-Guava, papaya, Jammu, jack fruit

Lemon water or ginger-turmeric tea

Amalaki juice

1 tsp of raw fenugreek powder with water before sleep

Freshwater fish, free-range chicken, and eggs

Flax seeds, cashew nut, coconut water

Korean Food Helped Cure Acne (Living in Seoul, South Korea)

Kimchi, mixed greens salad, red cabbage

Shoba noodles, Odom noodles, Korean rice

Grilled Fish, Grilled chicken, Seaweed soup

Typical- Korean diet-helped-cure acne

Typical Korean diet helped cure acne

Takeaway

The swap of diet banished her blemishes and got her healthful skin back. This is the simple reason she says “Diet is the cause and cure of acne”. Wrong food causes acne to break out and right food makes you a pimple free presenting you back with your healthy skin.

It is a happy and fulfilling reversal which she is been rejoicing now.  But remember everyone’s skin, body, and biology is different and you might not get the same effect. We would love to hear about your experience.
Per her “Diet can be the cause and cure for Acne”.

.

Anusuya Choudhury

14 Comments

  1. Well omega-3 fatty acids can help a lot with skin inflammation.

    I have been using it and I noticed you mentioned it. It has been really helping.

    But I had no idea that processed vegetable oil could cause it, thanks for letting me know.

    I would reduce the intake. This post would really help me out.

    • Hey Nsikakabasi,

      I am glad that this post helped you. 

      Oil is a big factor in skin inflammation, particularly the current high ratio of omega-6 to Omega-3 which exceeds the ideal amount in process foods.

      The processed vegetable oil information I communicated is from Dermatologists’s book written by Dr. Whitney Bowe. I also was not aware of it until I read.

      Thank you for your time reading the post and sharing your knowledge. 

  2. What a great article, since I’m a big believer in holistic treatments for many illnesses I find this information relevant and also very true for many who experience these issues. There’s a reason fast food or low quality food is considered to be very bad for people to eat on a daily basis. This article explains what can happen to your body if you eat poorly or simply eat the wrong foods. Thanks for posting the article. 

    • Hi John,

      Eating high quality food regularly helps your overall health not only acne. It is that easy but many of us opt for fast and oily just food for the taste.

      Knowledge and awareness always help

      Thank you for a read and sharing your personal experience. It really helps

  3. I think it is great that you are providing value in terms of educating people about the correlation between acne issues and the diet that one keeps. It really demonstrates the old adage that you are what you eat and when you provide proof with the examples that you  delineate in terms of the diets that caused acne breakouts it really shows that diet has an impact on the health of your skin. I will ensure to pass this along to empower those who may be dealing with acne issues. Keep up the great work and thank you!!

    • Hey Bex,

      I can not agree with you more- You are what you eat. There are 50 million American and 645 million around the world! suffering from acne. 

      We always think everyone knows about that can help acne but not really. My research has shown that the data out there are inconclusive. It is hard to rely on any guidance and proposition at times.

      But individuals experiences can never be ignored, at least per me. Food can cause acne and swapping your food can show big results on your skin and overall health.

      Thank you for a read and please share the info.

  4. Wow! Although I think there is a wealth of credible information here, there is a definite cultural slant on this subject that I think it might be difficult for people in America to take seriously or implement. Also there’s a lot of editing that needs to be done as far as the English translation. You’re off to a good start though !

    • Hey Gary,

      Thank you for taking the time to read the post. I am glad that you found this post informative. Let me tell you a fact about outreach and implementation. I had to read probably more than 120 posts searching for cancer treatment- home remedy and otherwise, to help my friend’s husband and her kids because I needed something desperately. These kids and my friend find a cultural slant (borrowing your word, my apology)reading English posts many times. The blog posts are for the world and 645! millions of people are impacted by this disturbing skin order and a 200-300 million of them reside in India. 50 million American suffer from this. Not that this testimonial was directed for any particular continent or region. This is a post where someone got cured of acne and demonstrated the genesis of acne consuming fast food, oily and really spicy diet. The native Indian food that you might be mentioning translation of, they are sold in that name mostly. I could explain how Samosa is made but I thought it is fairly easy to navigate if someone wants to know. I do that all the time for many posts. I hope my answer helped you. I always take advice and feedback from my friends and try to implement it.
      If you have some disposable time, I would request you to visit my other posts those are indexed by Google. Anusuya

  5. Last year I had changed my died by eliminating all processed food, drinking lot of water and counting calories. My main purpose was to loose weight, however i was positively surprised to find out that my skin was cleared and became shinny and smooth.

    Healthy diet equals healthy body and skin.

    • I am so glad to hear about your unintended diet that cleared up your skin. Yes, I agree with your last statement.

      Thank you.

  6. I notice a lot of times for me oily foods, especially fast food, will cause my chin to break out like crazy! In my case, I have to eliminate fast food all together and my skin improved a lot! I also have a few pimples here and there from my menstrual cycle, but I think being aware of what you eat can definitely help in some acne cases. 

    • Hi Ariana,

      Your information just validates that oily and fast food ends up with a breakout. Eliminating some diet always helps to know the causes and it boosts our mind up to stay away from the food.

      Thank you for a read and sharing your information.

  7. I fully agree that food can be the cause and the cure. I know when I eat junk food, I get a breakout of pimples. Also pollution affected my skin drastically. I always had clear skin as a teenager but when I was 19 I went to a place that had much more air pollution than I was used to. My skin was terrible after that. 

    • Hey Jenny,

       These are the knowledge base that helps. The investigators trial is expensive and to get a conclusive result has been daunting. 

      It might sound simple that food helps and can be the cause and cure of this depressing ailment but it has long term health benefit not only for acne but overall health.

      Thank you for a read and sharing your personal information.

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