Acne may affect more than 85 percent of teenagers in industrialized countries, and, in the United States, nearly half of all men and women seem to suffer from it into their 20s. Why is this common skin disorder considered “a disease of Western civilization”? Might diet play a role in the prevalence of this skin problem? Are there any foods that may help prevent or even treat acne?

Barberries, for example, have evidently been important in herbal medicine for thousands of years. Perhaps the most antioxidant-packed dried fruit available, these tangy, inexpensive fruits were found to dramatically reduce both the number of pimples overall and the number of inflamed lesions.

In contrast, dairy has been identified as a potential contributor to the acne epidemic. What is it about milk, cheese, and other dairy products that may cause us to break out? Is it the butterfat? The animal protein? The hormones? Is some milk, such as skim, better than others? We’ve got videos on all those topics.

The “meat-sweet” Western diet conspires to raise the enzyme TOR’s activity, which may contribute to acne and obesity. So, suppressing the enzyme through diet may not only improve acne, but may stave off more serious, TOR-driven diseases later in life.

I am certainly not above appealing to vanity, especially for my younger patients who have seemed more interested in which dietary changes will clear their acne than which will clear their future risk of chronic disease. So I’m happy to see articles embrace these types of studies with headlines like “Greens to Be Gorgeous.” Still, although looking great on the outside is fine, looking great on the inside is even better.

For substantiation of any statements of fact from the peer-reviewed medical literature, please see the associated videos below.

17 videos

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All Videos for Acne

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