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Common Myths About Acne

Common Myths About Acne

Acne is a common skin problem that brings about pimples, whiteheads, blackheads, and other blemishes. But why do we get acne? Do we get it from the food we eat? Ano ang mga bawal kainin pag may tigyawat? Is it because of dirt on our faces?

There are many myths about why we have skin breakouts. Here are some of the common myths about acne.

Common acne myths

Acne is caused by greasy food

It’s a popular belief that eating greasy foods will cause acne. We think of avoiding nuts, chocolates, and fried and oily foods.

While it is true that acne arises due to hyperactive oil glands in the skin, this is usually due to hormone fluctuations, or bacteria and dead skin cells clogging the pores, not necessarily by eating oily food.

Although expert studies suggest that there is no strong evidence that connects greasy food and developing acne1, some studies also suggest that there is a correlation between high glycemic index food and the worsening of already existing acne8.

Acne is caused by hygiene issues

People may think that having acne is a sign that a person’s skin is not clean or that they are not washing their face enough, but this is not necessarily the case.

Washing your face twice a day is enough. Washing more than twice may irritate the skin9. In addition, scrubbing, and using strong cleanser and soap, may lead to further skin irritation and acne outbreaks2.

Rather than being caused by having dirt or grime on your skin, acne is associated with bacteria and oil accumulated inside the pores.

Only teenagers get acne

While we most commonly connect acne with children hitting puberty or teenagers, acne can persist well into adulthood. It is also possible for a person not to get acne while they are a teen, but to get it when they’re an adult6. Adult acne is caused by the same things that cause teenage acne, such as dead skin cells and skin oil blocking the pores.

However adult acne may also arise due to fluctuating hormones in women, for instance during pregnancy and menopause. Proper evaluation by a dermatologist for hormonal imbalance and underlying causes must be done.

Acne is caused by “maruming dugo”

“Maruming dugo” or dirty blood may be thought to cause acne, but this is not the case. The Philippine Dermatological Society notes that “maruming dugo” does not cause the development of acne7. Instead, acne is normally caused by bacteria or hormonal imbalance3.

Factors that may cause acne

Foods connected to acne development

Ano ang mga bawal kainin pag may tigyawat?

Sugary foods that have high glycemic levels are connected to acne development. Studies have found that eating low-glycemic foods like fruits, vegetables, and beans can help reduce the amount of acne a person has.

Cow’s milk has also been found to increase acne. One possible reason is that some of the hormones found in milk may promote inflammation4, which can cause clogging of pores and acne. On the other hand, milk products like yogurt or cheese are not known to increase acne breakouts.

Whey protein, taken in the form of protein shakes, has also been connected to acne growth. Protein shakes are usually taken to promote muscle gain. However, majority of its component is protein milk and it can cause acne or breakouts5.

Skincare products

Despite the acne myths about eating oily food, oily products such as makeup and lotions with oily components may result in acne3. Non-comedogenic products, or products that do not encourage closed and clogged pores, are suggested to avoid this.

Family history

A genetic predisposition towards acne may run through the family. If your parents develop acne, the likelihood is high that you will develop acne as well3.

When to see a dermatologist for treatment

If your acne becomes severe, or keeps on returning, it is best to consult with a dermatologist. Consult your dermatologist for a proper diagnosis, and to better understand the causes of acne.

If symptoms persist, consult your doctor.

How severe is your acne? Are you likely to get acne scars? Find out through our acne screener, and get connected to a dermatologist.

Please click here to send your questions or concerns. Foods, Drugs, Devices and Cosmetics Act prohibits dispensing of ethical or prescription medicines without prescription. For suspected adverse drug reaction, report to the FDA at www.fda.gov.ph

Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

Sources
  1. Yale Scientific -Does Greasy Food Cause Acne? -November 16, 2011

https://www.yalescientific.org/2011/11/does-greasy-food-cause-acne/

  1. American Academy of Dermatology association – ACNE: TIPS FOR MANAGING

https://www.aad.org/public/diseases/acne/skin-care/tips

  1. NIH News in Health – Understanding Acne – January 2010

https://newsinhealth.nih.gov/2010/01/understanding-acne

  1. American Academy of Dermatology association – CAN THE RIGHT DIET GET RID OF ACNE?

https://www.aad.org/public/diseases/acne/causes/diet

  1. NCBI – Acne located on the trunk, whey protein supplementation: Is there any association? – March 2017

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5350548/

  1. Intermountain Healthcare – 6 Surprising Causes of Adult Acne – 2017

https://intermountainhealthcare.org/blogs/topics/live-well/2017/11/6-surprising-causes-of-adult-acne/

  1. PDS – Acne

https://pds.org.ph/acne/

  1. PDS – The Role of Diet in Acne

https://pds.org.ph/the-role-of-diet-in-acne-2/

  1. AAD – 10 Skin Care Habits That Can Worsen Acne

https://www.aad.org/public/diseases/acne/skin-care/habits-stop

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Written by Hello Doctor Medical Panel Updated 5 days ago
Medically reviewed by Hello Doctor Medical Panel