Acner.org: Acne treatment

Acner.org: Acne treatment

What Foods Should I Eat to Prevent Acne?

What Foods Should I Eat to Prevent Acne?

Acne can appear on the face, neck, chest, back, shoulders and upper arms. And according to the American Academy of Dermatology, up to 85 percent of all people will experience acne at some point in their lives. Many factors contribute to the development of acne, including bacterial growth in the hair follicles, tissue inflammation, plugging of hair follicles and hormonal imbalances. A healthy diet may help prevent acne by addressing some of its underlying causes.

Zinc

Zinc is an essential trace element that plays numerous important roles in the body's cells. It's involved with growth and development, immune system function, neurological health and reproduction. When a person is deficient in zinc, it may slow their growth and development, cause diarrhea, inhibit wound healing and cause skin rashes. Certain individuals may be susceptible to zinc deficiency, such as teenagers, strict vegetarians and people with digestive disorders.

Alan Gaby, MD, a specialist in nutritional medicine, reports that zinc supplementation can be helpful for treating severe forms of acne. As a result, sufficient dietary zinc may help prevent the development of acne. Dietary sources of zinc include shellfish, meat, eggs, nuts and legumes. Zinc is also present in whole grains that are soaked for several hours prior to preparation.

B Vitamins

Like zinc, B vitamins are present in a multitude of cellular reactions in the body. Two B vitamins in particular, vitamins B5 and B6, may be helpful for treatment and prevention of acne. Vitamin B5, also called pantothenic acid, is involved with generating energy from food, producing hormones and detoxifying the body. Gaby states that pantothenic acid supplementation can help treat acne. Vitamin B6 is also involved with energy production and synthesis of hormones and other biochemical compounds. Vitamin B6 can be helpful particularly for women who experience acne prior to their menstrual periods. Dietary sources of pantothenic acid include liver and kidney, fish, shellfish, chicken, yeast, egg yolk, dairy products, legumes, broccoli and sweet potatoes. You can find vitamin B6 in potatoes, spinach, salmon and chicken.

Whole Foods

According to traditional systems of medicine, such as Ayurveda and naturopathy, the health of the skin directly relates to gastrointestinal integrity. If the body is unable to properly assimilate foods, filter toxins and eliminate wastes, poor quality secretions and increased inflammation--significant contributors to acne--affect the skin.

A healthy diet helps to ensure proper bodily function and skin health, and acne prevention are natural extensions. The ideal diet varies by the individual, but generally, is does not contain processed and refined foods, such as sugar, artificial sweeteners and packaged goods. When foods are refined or processed, a large percentage of their nutritional value is lost. A healthy diet, rich in nutrients, is composed of unprocessed, whole foods, such as vegetables, fruits, whole grains, legumes, nuts, seeds, and high quality animal products. Such a diet is not only helpful in preventing acne, but a significant contributor to overall wellness.

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