Adult Health

Healthy Foods with Nasty Acne Side Effects

pimples on neck
Written by andy

Avoid these foods if you’re worried about acne…

Acne can be a real pain in the butt! Just when you think you’ve cleared up the last of your pimples, a fresh set breaks out. It’s so hard to predict when and where a new zit will strike, and all your efforts to keep your face clean and toned will be for naught if your hormones are out of whack. But did you know that your diet plays a very important role in your skin health? Here are a few healthy foods with nasty acne side effects:

  • Chocolate — Dark chocolate is very good for your health, thanks to all the antioxidants and flavonoids it contains. But, if you get a high-sugar, high-fat chocolate bar, you’re giving your body the fatty acids it needs to produce more skin oil, increasing your risk of pimples. Make sure to ONLY eat dark chocolate, with a 70% or higher cocoa content.
  • Protein Powder –-Milk proteins play a role in the production of pimples, though how exactly whey and casein are linked to zits is still unknown. People with acne problems should be careful what protein powders they choose. Egg, soy, and pea protein powders are all acne-friendly, and can be a good alternative if you break out in pimples when you eat whey or casein protein powders.
  • Dried Fruit –– While fruit may be great for your health, dried fruit is less so. Dried fruit is basically concentrated sugar, and it can cause a spike in your insulin levels. This can, in turn, cause a shift in your hormones, leading to an increase in skin oil production and thus pimple breakouts. Any high-carb/high-sugar foods will have the same effect. If you’re going to eat fruit, make sure it’s raw and fresh!

READ MORE: Health Foods You Should Avoid Like the Plague

  • Red Meat –– Red meat is vital for a healthy body, but non-organic beef and pork can have detrimental effects on your health. If you are exposed to the antibiotics given to cows and pigs, it may throw off your internal hormonal balance. It’s always best to go with free range, organic beef whenever possible.
  • Skim Milk –– Just like whey protein powder can cause acne breakouts, skim milk can have the same negative effect. There may not be any fat in the skim milk, but there is more lactose and more whey/casein. All of these things can cause an increase in your risk of an acne breakout.
  • Shellfish –­- While most shellfish is considered fairly healthy, it’s not your best friend for fighting acne. Both lobster and shrimp are high in the mineral iodine, which can cause acne breakouts in people with a natural sensitivity. Even just eating too much of these two shellfish may increase your risk of pimples. If you’re going to eat seafood to improve your skin health, stick with Omega 3-rich fatty fish like salmon and sardines.
  • Fruit Juice — All that cold-pressed, 100% natural fruit juice you’re drinking may make you feel healthy, but it’s really not! Juice is loaded with sugar, but has no fiber to slow down the rate of absorption. This can cause a blood sugar spike that forces your body to produce more insulin, which in turn causes hormonal imbalances, an increased production of skin oil, and ultimately acne. If you’re going to eat fruits, do so in their natural state, with all the healthy fiber they contain.

These foods can be healthy, but for those with acne, it’s better to avoid them and thus reduce your risk of a fresh breakout of zits!

About the author


Some people get lucky and are born with fit, toned bodies. Andy Peloquin is not one of those people... Fitness has come hard for him, and he's had to work for it. His trials have led him to becoming a martial artist, an NFPT-certified fitness trainer, and a man passionate about exercise, diet and healthy living. He loves to exercise--he does so six days a week--and loves to share his passion for fitness and health with others.

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