Acne is Not Just About the Diet

By Bailey Roden, Arizona Farm Bureau Intern

You know that cliché movie where the teenage girl has a date coming up and a pimple appears right in the middle of her forehead. I fully relate to this and I know many of you can too. Of course, it’s not a problem any of us want to have but it happens! I remember my first experience with this problem like it was yesterday. I had the most important competition of my life. I thought that no one would be able to take me seriously with a ginormous swollen red dot on my face. The worst part of it all is that there was nothing I could do about it other than a little foundation. It still felt like a neon sign flashing red on my forehead.

So, I went on about my day, did my competition while still being completely self-conscious. To make matters even worse I was in so much pain due to this bump on my face. I didn’t think the day could get any worse. While I was in this situation I began to think of all the ways this can be prevented. I wash my face every day and I moisturize, but apparently that’s not enough.

Full of curiosity, I began to do some research because I needed to know how to avoid this situation. During my research I found out that teenagers are not the only ones suffering from acne, adults are too. Research has also shown that your diet plays a role in your face breakouts. A lot of Americans consume a “Western Diet.” This diet is loaded with red meat, saturated fats, carbohydrates and too much sugar. A key component missing from this diet is plant-based fibers. The western diet has forgotten the rule of moderation. As the consumer of this diet, it is our responsibility to incorporate moderation. There are foods we could add to this diet to help fight acne! For example, foods that are rich in antioxidants! You can also keep that beef on your plate, because foods that are rich in zinc help fight acne as well. So, next time you throw that mouthwatering steak on the grill, have a nice side salad to go with it! I would even throw some carrots on that plate for a brighter color!

The list includes more than just your diet when it comes to contributing factors of acne. Your genetics and hormones are also the enemy. Genetics may come as a shock to most people but in this day in age it’s pretty common. This is one of the most unpredictable factors. Similar to other diseases or issues dealing with genetics, it’s difficult to treat because the counter reaction is unknown. The other excuse you’ve heard for acne is hormones. Hormones are the sneak-attack acne. Hormones are happening internally and acne is an external blemish that appears due to all the crazed hormone activity that’s going on during puberty.  Of course, there is one more pesky acne factor that we are all too familiar with; stress. Stress-related pimples can also be linked back to hormones. When you’re stressed, an oil-releasing hormone increases the amount of oil released therefore causing a clogged pore and a surprise visit from our unpopular friend, acne.

It seems like the world of acne is against us, that’s because it totally is. But we worked out today, so we’re ready to fight back! In the war against acne, remember to have a diet that includes a variety of red meat and plant-based fibers. If genetics is your issue, doctors specializing in dermatology can help you find a treatment that’s right for you, the same thing goes for hormones! As for stress, take a deep breath and relax.

For recipes to help you add variety to your plate check out Fill Your Plate, We have everything from main dishes, side dishes, and desserts!

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