KEY POINTS

  • New study examined connection between food choices and acne in adults
  • Dairy, sugary and fatty foods were linked to acne breakouts in adults
  • Genetics, pollution, stress should also be viewed as contributors of acne breakouts

Acne breakouts are a major bummer during teenage years. But when they happen in adulthood, they become an even bigger problem. A new study has shed light on what is causing acne to pop up in adults. 

A study published in the journal JAMA Dermatology focused on acne in adults, and it linked poor food choices to the appearance of the skin condition in people belonging to this age group. The researchers who conducted it concentrated on dairy products and fatty and sugary foods as they have been connected to pimple problems in teenagers.

Acne is an inflammatory skin condition that occurs when the pores are clogged with dirt, oil and dead skin cells. It causes pimples, whiteheads, blackheads, and typically affects the face, but it could also appear on the chest, shoulders, and upper back. Acne is most common among teenagers, but it could also affect people of all ages, Mayo Clinic said.

For the study, the team led by Laetitia Penso, MSc, of the University of Paris in Bobigny, utilized data from an ongoing observational study in France that started in May 2009. Information gathered from online self-questionnaires answered by a total of 24,452 participants were reviewed. The survey particularly asked the participants about their acne status, whether they have had acne, never had one, or currently have the condition. 

The dietary behavior of the participants was also determined through the questionnaires. Associations between diet and acne status were then made while also considering other variables such as age, sex, physical activity, smoking status and depressive symptoms, among others. 

After analyzing data, the researchers found that 11,324 individuals out of the total number of participants have had or currently have acne. They identified a significant association between fatty and sugary foods with current acne. Sugary beverages and milk were also found to have contributed to current acne cases. However, the team indicated that further large-scale studies are warranted to establish the link between adult acne and poor food choices. 

According to Harvard Health Publishing, certain foods can really promote inflammation throughout the body and trigger acne breakouts. Dairy, sugary and fatty foods are said to alter hormones that affect skin health. Nevertheless, other factors like stress, genetics, and pollution should also be viewed as contributors of the skin condition.

study shows link between dairy, chocolates, sugary foods and acne study shows link between dairy, chocolates, sugary foods and acne Photo: SharonMcCutcheon - Pixabay