Are you one of those adults who wakes up everyday asking him- or herself when the sophomoric plague of acne will finally come to an end? According to the American Academy of Dermatology, the frequency of adult acne is growing at unprecedented rates.
Why do men and women have persistent acne into their 30s, 40s, and 50s?There is reason to believe diets high in sugar, dairy, gluten, and alcohol are the culprits. In an interview with Cosmopolitan, London-based naturopathic doctor, skincare specialist, and best-selling author Dr. Nigma Talib discussed the specific ways in which wine, dairy, sugar, and gluten effect facial acne. Keep reading to understand how these substances affect your face (especially the chin) and why.
According to Dr. Talib, you can identify the foods you overeat simply be examining your skin. The 4 following infographics help illustrate this:
1. Wine Face
In the above image, Dr. Talib has identified the signs of over-drinking. Blemishes between the eyebrows and enlarged pores are sure-fire signs of a glass too many. Dr. Talib explains that wine is bad for the skin because it is full of sugar and kicks the liver and digestion system into overdrive.
Other dermatologists, like Dr. David Colbert, founder of New York Dermatology Group, warns of the skin dangers that come with drinking any kind of alcohol. In an article for Huffington Post, Dr. Colbert explains that though red wine is high in antioxidants that counter the aging process, it can also release histamines in some people, leading to increased flushing.
To treat “Wine Face,” Dr. Talib recommends taking a complete break from alcohol for 3 weeks. After your skin has had time to detox, cut down your drinking to enjoy a glass or two 6 days a month, and totally abstain from alcohol the other 24 days. In other words, treat yourself to a fabulous glass on the weekends and stay dry during the week.
2. Dairy Face
If, on the other hand, you have widespread acne and concentrated pimples on the chin, it may be time to skip the brie and opt for dairy-free milk or creamer in your coffee. According to Dr. Talib, as we age, we lose the enzymes needed to properly digest lactose. This leads to inflammation all over the body, including the face.
If you think you have “Dairy Face,” Dr. Talib recommends taking a break from dairy for a few weeks to see if your acne clears. If it does, try to only consume dairy once-in-a-while.
3. Sugar Face
We all know how bad sugar is for the body. If you suspect you regularly have a pinch of sugar too many, check your face for widespread pustular or cystic acne. The reason sugar is so bad for the skin, is because the excess glucose molecules generated by sugar cling to the collagen in the skin.
For clear skin, Dr. Talib stresses there is no better cure than avoiding sugar at all costs. Of course, it’s okay to cheat every once in awhile, but when you do, savor a single square of dark chocolate. Never eat the whole candy bar.
4. Gluten Face
Everyone is talking about gluten. Even if you do not have a gluten intolerance, you may want to cut back on the bread and pasta if you notice blemishes across the forehead and red spots on the cheeks. Dr. Talib explains gluten effects the skin because it causes systematic inflammation throughout the body. Dr. Mercola echoes Dr. Talib in his recommendation to completely remove gluten, grains, and sugar from the diet to treat acne.
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RESOURCES COSMOPOLITAN, AMERICAN ACADEMY OF DERMATOLOGY, DR. MERCOLA, AND HUFFINGTON POST