Hey pizza face! Nothing is worse for a teenager’s self esteem than to get a case of acne. Your body seems to be going through so many changes, you begin to question your parents and you might just be starting a social life that includes the girls that you hated when you were younger. On top of that, to have your face break out with a full load of zits is almost more than a teenager’s fragile ego can bear.
During the teen years the oil, or sebaceous glands, go into over time. The excess oil can clog pores which can then get infected and turn into pustules. Squeezing these can drive the pus deeper into the skin and make things worse. Sometimes if pimples are squeezed near the bridge of the nose it can cause a serious infection.
Even the scientific name for acne sounds disgusting: acne vulgaris. Millions of dollars a year are spent on treatments for acne. Acne is the subject of many a late night infomercial.
When I was a teenager I too suffered from acne. It wasn’t that bad but at the time whenever I got a breakout I wanted to run away and hide. I’d scrub my face until it hurt and then layer this stuff that acted like calamine lotion all over my face before I went to bed at night. When I woke up the next morning my face felt like a piece of dried up leather.
About forty years ago several scientific studies showed that there was no link between the types of food that you ate and outbreaks of acne. But it still was said that eating things like chocolate and fried foods could precipitate an outbreak.
Now there are some studies that suggest that the type of diet you have may aggravate or improve acne. According to WebMD:
“A good way to improve the health of your skin is to eat in a manner that keeps your blood sugar steady. Some research suggests that insulin may play a role in acne.” And when you eat a lot of food that is rich in carbohydrates it pushes your blood sugar up hard and fast. And this causes your body to release extra insulin. Although the jury is still out on this one, if you have acne, you may want to eat foods with a low glycemic index.
Another possible connection between diet and acne is dairy. Dairy foods can increase the level of testosterone in your bloodstream and that can increase oil production. Some people claim that their acne got better when they gave up dairy. The only way that you can know if it affects you is to give it up for a while and see if it helps.
Some studies have also suggested a link between oils and omega 6’s and acne as well. Try eating fewer fried foods and eat more foods that are rich in omega 3’s instead of red meat which has a lot of the 6’s.