Ever heard the phrase “True beauty starts on the inside?” When it comes to your skin, it’s true. While a good skin care regimen is vital in keeping your skin as healthy and as clear as it can be, it’s important to realize that most products have very little impact on what’s below the surface. If you’ve been having trouble with acne that just won’t go away no matter what you do, then it might be time to dig a little deeper into the causes and solutions.
First, if you’re experiencing breakouts, know that you’re not alone: 55% of adults struggle with some form of acne. Even with a great skincare routine, things like stress, hormonal imbalances, and genetics also come into play, manifesting in too much sebum production (that’s the oil that clogs your pores, leading to acne.) You can’t control all of those, but there is one area of your life where a few strategic tweaks can have a positive impact on your skin’s health and appearance, and that’s your diet. Here are the simple changes you can make to noticeably reduce acne:
Staying hydrated is a guaranteed route to looking and feeling better, but even though it’s a no-brainer, most people don’t do it. While the common wisdom dictates eight glasses every day, the experts will tell you that that amount isn’t based on science at all. Additionally, drinking that amount of water can make it feel like a chore. Instead, drink when you feel thirsty, and if you’re liable to forget, develop a habit of getting your H2O at certain times of day, like during your lunch hour or when you get home from work. Being properly hydrated helps maintain healthy organ function—and your skin is your largest organ. It also helps to cut down on dehydrating beverages, like those that contain caffeine or alcohol.
Refined sugar is your skin’s worst nightmare. Your skin is happiest when your body’s chemistry is calm and in balance, and sugar is a triple threat when it comes to disturbing that peace. It plays havoc with your insulin levels, spikes inflammation, and releases an overabundance of hormones like androgen, all of which leads to breakouts. However, it’s important to avoid not just the obvious sources of sugar, like soft drinks, but the hidden ones as well. Refined carbs, like white flour, are high on the glycemic index, which measures how quickly the food you eat is broken down into glucose once digested. Don’t worry—you don’t have to become a nutritionist to sidestep high-glycemic foods; just keep away from the processed stuff, and you should be in the clear.
Reducing your intake of processed foods can have an impact not just for your skin, but for your overall wellbeing. Processed food is an umbrella term for any food that has been altered or chemically added to in order to prolong its shelf life. Basically, if the ingredient list contains anything you have to read twice in order to pronounce, stay away from it. This can include fast food, packaged items at the grocery store, even the mocha syrup the barista puts in your coffee. Processed foods contain all kinds of ingredients, like refined carbs and hydrogenated oils, that your skin is better off without. Furthermore, they’re often high on the glycemic index (see above.) Instead, focus on making whole grains, beans, legumes, and vegetables the main event in your diet, followed by proteins and healthy fats. A simple rule of thumb is to cover half of your plate with veggies before putting anything else on it. That way no matter what, you know you’re at least 50% in the clear.
Steer clear of the aisles. Think about how your local grocery store is laid out: the vegetables, dairy, proteins, and other less processed foods are arranged along the outside. The aisles in the middle are stuffed with cookies, sugary cereal, oily chips, soft drinks, and other pitfalls. A handy guideline is to make sure your cart is at least 80% the more nutritional, healthier foods from the produce, dairy, and protein sections—which is all around the outside. Not only are those middle aisle foods low on the nutritional scale, they usually have lots of what your skin needs least, like sugar, salt, and processed oils.
Everyone’s skin is different, and finding out what works for yours might take some trial and error. For some people, a single square of chocolate can lead to a week’s worth of skin trouble; for others, dairy is the biggest no-no. Discover what foods might be tripping up your skin game by cutting out one suspect at a time for at least three weeks, and making a note of the results. Then, find a reasonable substitute for the worst offenders, like replacing regular milk with almond milk, for instance. Even though you’re giving up a few things to get great skin, there’s no reason you should feel deprived.
Although the importance of diet is undeniable when it comes to achieving clear, beautiful skin, there’s another resource for targeting skin troubles. Speak to your dermatologist or treatment provider, who can make customized suggestions tailored to you. These may include other dietary changes or taking advantage of advanced medical aesthetic technology. Venus Versa™ acne treatments use Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) with proprietary SmartPulse™ technology to combat acne-causing bacteria and inflammation below the skin’s surface. With a single treatment session lasting 20 minutes, Venus Versa™ acne treatments deliver visibly clear, healthy-looking skin in less time than it takes to do your morning skin care routine!
These treatments are a great option for anyone struggling with acne who isn’t seeing results from making changes to their diet or is looking to boost their progress with professional help. Venus Versa™ acne treatments can fast-track you on your way to better skin, and prevent future breakouts from happening as well. Get started today by locating a provider near you using the search field below.