How to Reduce Acne on the Skin
If you've suffered from acne, you know that while it may not be mentioned in the same breath as more health-threatening afflictions, it can be debilitating, nonetheless. Going through your daily social and professional routine with acne can lower your self-confidence and discourage you from being active. According to the "Dermatology Online Journal," in fact, acne sufferers report having more anxiety and depression than do those suffering from cancer. Fortunately, you can reduce acne.
Change your eating habits. It's long been thought that eating starchy and sugary foods -- pizza, chocolate and pasta, for instance -- can increase acne. No studies have ever backed up that theory, but it has been proven that healthy eating leads to a healthier body -- including your skin. Eating vegetables, such as spinach, kale and tomatoes, can boost your vitamin A levels and aid in cell regeneration.
Wash properly. Allowing grease, sweat and bacteria to stay on your skin -- especially on the face -- can clog pores and worsen your acne. Wash with a fragrance-free, gentle soap with warm water to open the pores and allow the soap to cleanse. Rinse with cold water, tightening pores and keeping out bacteria. Washing twice a day is sufficient; any more and you may irritate or dry out your skin, inflaming the acne.
Talk to a doctor about prescription help. There's a seemingly limitless number of acne products on the market, both in prescription form and over-the-counter. Lighter cases of acne may only require a store-shelf product, while more severe cases will likely need prescription drugs or creams. If you are looking to lose weight and shed acne at the same time, consider Relacore, the non-prescription weight-loss drug. Studies at Wake Forest and Stanford universities concluded the drug reduces acne because it fights naturally occurring cortisol.
Kick the habit if you're a smoker. A study published in 2006 in the "Journal of Investigative Dermatology" showed a significantly higher rate of acne among smokers than non-smokers during a 13-year observation period. Smoking constricts blood vessels, slows healing, causes general inflammation and damages cells.
Exercise regularly and get enough sleep. Exercise and healthy sleeping habits increase blood circulation and give your skin higher levels of oxygenation, promoting a healthy texture.
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