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Cheese and Carbohydrate Intake May Influence Acne

Findings from a recent study published in the Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology suggested that certain foods may influence acne formation and severity.

“Acne vulgaris is one of the chronic skin diseases with bacterial and perifollicular inflammation in its etiology,” the researchers said. “In recent years, numerous studies have been conducted on hormones and food consumption, which are thought to affect this inflammation.”

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In their case-controlled study, the researchers investigated the role of factors such as food consumption habits and anthropometric measurements, in the etiology and severity of acne among 53 patients with acne vulgaris and 53 age-, gender-, and ethnicity-matched controls. A dermatologist calculated each participant’s acne score using the Global Acne Grading System. Dietary intake was collected, which included milk and dairy products, along with carbohydrate, fat, and protein ratios. Body mass index and body fat percentages were also calculated.

The researchers found participants with acne consumed more cheese compared with the control group, which they determined to be a statistically significant difference. In addition, they found statistically positive correlations between acne score and carbohydrate consumption, as well as statistically negative correlation between acne score and fat consumption.

“In patients with acne vulgaris, it was observed that cheese consumption increased acne formation and carbohydrate consumption increased acne severity, while fat consumption did not increase acne severity,” the researchers concluded.


Akpinar Kara Y, Ozdemir D. Evaluation of food consumption in patients with acne vulgaris and its relationship with acne severity [published online December 16, 2019]. J Cosmet Dermatol. doi:10.1111/jocd.13255


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