Understanding The Link Between Dairy and Acne

If you’ve been suffering with acne symptoms for years, chances are you’ve heard about the connection between dairy and acne. Myths about dairy and acne are just as common as the acne itself. However, is it real? Will quitting dairy products completely clear my acne? Is this the ultimate cure for my long-lasting acne symptoms?

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Understanding the Link Between Dairy and Acne

First of all, health and nutrition are intertwined. We have all experienced those annoying spots popping up after having a meal which was high in salt. This type of “skin behavior” is apparently trying to tell you that something is off. However, have you noticed a similar pattern after indulging in dairy, i.e., pizza, ice cream, Thanksgiving dinner, etc.?

Case study about dairy and acne

According to James Fulton, who was a world-class dermatologist and self-titled “acne-ologist” has done a lot of research around the link between acne and dairy.

In his book (Acne RX, 2001), Dr. Fulton explained that iodine is the main cause why dairy is triggering acne. Specifically, the nutritionists who performed the tests were surprised to find high levels of iodine in milk since milk naturally doesn’t contain much iodine. However, the big revelation was that iodine is added to cowlick salt and that is how it finds its way into the milk. Overall, excessive, long-term ingesting of iodide, which is also known as iodine, in drugs or food can flare your acne.

Another, more recent study published in the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology in 2016, revealed that consumption of dairy – specifically the low fat/skim milk is much higher in those teenagers who have acne.

Apparently, scientists have found a positive association with acne and the intake of total milk and skimmed milk. Dairy can cause acne because of its high levels of iodine, specifically in cow’s milk. Both Goat and Sheep milk are believed to be the safer options. Although the study didn’t put any limitations on self-reporting and the amounts of dairy consumed during the trial period, the results are apparent – there is undoubtedly a link between dairy and acne.

Quit Dairy = Quit Acne, Right?

So now we’ve talked about the variety of evidence about acne and dairy, you probably want to know whether quitting dairy would make your skin Acne – free. The truth is – we can’t guarantee that it will work for you. While the links between dairy and acne undoubtedly exist, there are multiple other factors such as genetic factors as well as other triggers such as hormones, stress, or other acne-triggering foods and digestion.

Most importantly, we’d like to emphasize that self-diagnosis never leads to successful treatment of acne. By cutting out a specific group of supplements that can cause acne, you may put your health at risk, and you should always consult a qualified acne specialist before eliminating dairy or any other food group from your regular diet.

Your Next Steps…

At Natural Acne Clinic, we have exceptional clear skin coaches who are ready to educate you and help you achieve clear skin. Book your Online Acne Consult today to get to know your skin and learn more about our 16-week Online Acne Program.

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About the Founder: Jessica Gremley

Jessica has been a Medical Esthetician, Certified Acne Specialist and Healing Diets Coach since 2003. After struggling with acne for more than a decade, she became determined to find a way to clear acne without pharmaceuticals for herself and eventually, future clients. Today, she offers a complete acne regimen that combines proven non-comedogenic skincare products, natural supplements, lifestyle coaching, and support from trained acne specialists to achieve lifelong clear skin. She and her staff serve locally at Natural Acne Clinic in Wheat Ridge, Colorado and nationally via NAC’s Online Acne Program.

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