Written by Lisa Allen, MD
Although there hasn’t been anything to prove that certain foods can cause acne, there have been certain people who find that eating specific foods tends to make their cystic acne worse. If this is the case, this may require weeding out potential food allergies. The following foods have been linked to cystic acne.
Gluten is an ingredient found in many foods. It is particularly found in foods containing wheat, rye, oats and barley. An allergy to gluten can be fairly serious as it can cause abdominal pain and digestive problems along with hives, rashes, and other serious side effects. An allergy blood test is the most accurate way to determine if one should stay clear of gluten.
Another way to test the theory is to monitor your resting heart rate and to then eat products containing gluten and test it again. If you notice a significant change, you are most likely allergic to gluten. If you suspect that you may be allergic to gluten it is important that you talk to a doctor or physician immediately and start looking into your options to live a gluten free and hopefully acne free life.
When a person is allergic to dairy products, symptoms such as quickening of the pulse, hives, rashes, or even shock have been known to occur. What many people suffering from dairy allergies do not often recognize however, is that acne can also be a symptom of an allergic reaction to dairy products. Again, a blood test is the best way to determine if a person has allergic reactions to dairy, but a pulse test and noting of a significant difference in when a person has and does not have a dairy product can also prove to be a beneficial way for one to tell.
Soy is an ingredient that is used any many food products often as a filler or in some cases, as a food product itself. Many people report food allergies to soy products and suffer acne outbreaks as a symptom of the reaction. If a person notices that their acne worsens after eating food products that contain soy it would be wise to discontinue eating such products and to talk to a physician to rule out any other possible causes.
One of the most serious food allergies that occurs in people is an allergic reaction to seafood, specifically usually one pertaining to shellfish. While the most common symptoms occurring as a reaction are hives, rashes, swelling of the face and throat, acne can also be a common occurrence. If a person has recently eaten shellfish and notice any of these symptoms they should seek medical attention and also consider getting a blood test done to rule out any other possible causes.
Inflammation of the skin is an immune system response that can occur when a person is allergic to certain foods or products. Food allergies activate the immune system and increase inflammation. Intolerances or sensitivities to certain foods can also trigger this immune system response to occur and make a person’s skin more prone to acne outbreaks as well.
The reason this occurs is because when a person’s body is allergic to a certain food, the undigested food particles enter the bloodstream and the body doesn’t recognize it as food and treats them as invaders. The immune system then begins to do its job by attacking the invaders and this leads to inflammation. When a person eats foods that they are allergic to often, the immune system as a result is active all the time and the levels of inflammatory hormones go crazy. For acne prone individuals this means acne is more likely to occur.
The best advice to a person who is acne prone and has food allergies is to avoid those foods they are allergic to. That is the best and quickest way to ensure that their acne problem will go away much faster.