One of the most widely published statements about acne on the Internet is this, "Eating Sugar does not cause acne, that's just a myth! So go ahead and eat it (in moderation!)"
Then they try to sell you their facial cream. Or gel. Or pill.
This article will be about the truth about sugar and its connection to acne.
Sugar and Acne are Highly Related to One Another
The simple fact of the matter is that sugar is one of the primary foods that cause acne to flare up. Sugar causes blood sugar levels to rise immediately to very high levels. The body must release insulin to deal with the sugar. In essence, the body is trying to process the sugar and get it out of the body. Everyone knows the sugar high that lasts about 15 minutes with the crash shortly after. This is the body attempting to deal with the sugar. When the body can no longer manage it, that is called diabetes.
For those who suffer with acne, the body's response causes strong imbalances in the body. As it tries to deal with waste material, the body may use the skin to quickly eliminate. This results in acne.
One interesting thing about sugar is that there is often what are known as "sugar pimples" within 12 hours of eating some significant amount of sugar. This has been noticed by nearly every acne sufferer who gets serious about learning their body's reactions to things. In addition, what is even more interesting is that sugar is also the main cause not just of small sugar pimples, but the deep cystic acne as well.
Now, often you may hear of people who say, "I cut out all sugar for a week and nothing happened, I still got acne!" Or even a month they may say. In the vast majority of these cases, they just don't understand all the sugar they are still consuming.
People vastly underestimate the amount of foods that are large sources of sugar
Almost endless numbers of foods that people eat are loaded with sugar that they don't even know about and think are healthy. Orange juice, granola bars, energy bars, any kind of breakfast cereal, vegan and vegetarian options replacements, and even fruits. We receive emails all the time about people asking if things like this are OK. The answer is, NO they are not OK if you really want to clear your acne quickly. That doesn't mean you can never eat fruit again. It means stop them for now, get clear skin, then test what you can eat without a problem.
Now things such as candy, soda, desserts of all types, must be eliminated entirely. For a person who eats the standard diet of today to actually go with no sugar for a week will likely result in some discomfort or cravings. Sugar is an addictive substance.
Those who are experienced with using diet to eliminate acne entirely will almost universally tell you that if they eat a lot of sugar they will get a pimple or two. Sugar is not a food. It should not be eaten in its refined form, period. However, living in the real world, all of us like to enjoy it at times. Once you have clear skin it is easy to know how much sugar you can eat. The funny thing is, once you have perfect skin and are eating correctly, you will lose interest in sugar and not find it very attractive to eat. It must be stressed that refined sugar is a food that can never be recommended to have in moderation. Can you get away with it a little bit, probably if your diet is otherwise good. But it can never be said that you can have it in "moderation."
The important thing to do is really figure out how much sugar you are eating every day. Often when people eliminate one sugar item they replace it with another without really being conscious of it. For example, they may stop drinking soda. But they replace it with energy drinks or lots of fruit juices and think they are being healthy. This is quite wrong in regards to acne. What matters for the acne sufferer is the blood sugar levels, no matter where it comes from. Sugars are the enemy of the acne sufferer, quality fats are their best friend. Be sure to replace the sugary products that you remove from your diet with quality foods with good fats to sate your hunger.