It’s so frustrating to deal with acne, especially as an adult. Trust me, I’ve been there. You think you’re doing everything right with a cleansing regimen and minimal makeup, but those pesky bumps are still popping up.
Often, skin issues aren’t solved with merely topical solutions. We have to start on the INSIDE. What are you putting in your body (intentionally or unintentionally) that could be contributing to acne?
The gold standard for addressing food sensitivities is a full-blown Elimination Diet. You’ll systematically take away common trigger foods and slowly add them back in to watch for reoccurrence of symptoms. It takes time, but it’s worth the investigation.
If you’re short on time or not quite ready to commit to an Elimination Diet, here are a few simple food swaps for clear skin.
Related: Mindful Eating: Finding a Healthy Relationship with Food
5 Simple Food Swaps for Clear Skin…
1 – Swap Dairy Milk for Oat Milk
There are a number of potential triggers in dairy including lactose (a milk sugar) and whey or casein protein (the two main proteins). Cow’s milk can spike blood sugar and insulin levels, increasing inflammation in the body. Commercial dairy products potentially contain added hormones that encourage sebum production.
Instead, choose a non-dairy substitute like coconut milk or oat milk. Be careful to choose an unsweetened option with no added oils! As good as it may taste, the extra sugar is also linked to acne.
<<Kate’s Fave: Click here to learn about Willa’s Oat Milk>>
2 – Swap Soy for Legumes
Soy contains a high amount of inflammatory omega-6 fats. These fats increase redness and swelling, and can cause hormone imbalance when consumed in excess. Read ingredient lists carefully, as soy is hidden in so many processed food products!
For a better plant-based protein, choose legumes or lentils. Chickpeas are one of my favorites- packed with fiber, protein, and vitamins. Plus, they are super versatile for sweet and savory dishes alike. ((Here’s my go-to hummus recipe))
3 – Swap Coffee for Tea
Most conventional coffee is contaminated with mycotoxin (a mold that grows on beans). When our liver encounters this toxin, it must work on detoxifying it first, leaving you vulnerable to recirculation of other toxins and hormones. Further, caffeine can take a toll on our adrenal glands (and increase stress hormone). More cortisol = more inflammation.
For a healthy warm drink, try matcha or green tea. The epi-gallo-catechin-gallate (EGCG) in green tea is a powerful antioxidant and phytonutrient.
>>Skip The Rest and Check out The ELIMINATION DIET GUIDE<<
4 – Swap Peanut Butter for Seeds
Hold your horses, I know this is a tough one. Peanuts contain a high amount of the same inflammatory omega-6 oils as soy. Further, many commercial peanut butters are made with hydrogenated oils like corn, safflower, or soybean. A better option for clear skin is a seed-based butter like Sunflower Butter.
Always look for seed butters that contain very simple ingredients: just seeds, no oils, no sugar! My favorite is from Thrive Market.
5 – Swap Sugar for Stevia, Honey, or Maple Syrup.
High sugar consumption is linked to a number of diseases. If you’re dealing with acne, this is one of the first foods to completely eliminate from your diet. Refined sugar is pro-inflammatory and increases the likelihood of outward manifestations of inflammation (read: acne).
If you have a sweet tooth, enjoy the natural sweetness of fruits. In my opinion, a medjool date stuffed with sunflower butter and sprinkled with sea salt tastes better and more satisfying than a candy bar.
For drinks like coffee and tea, I use liquid stevia. Natural sweeteners like honey and maple syrup are also a better-for-you choice for your skin health.
Ultimately, it’s clear (pun intended) that skin health starts from the inside out. The food we eat literally becomes us: so what are you choosing to be made of? Always, a nutrient-dense diet with plenty of fiber, colorful vegetables, and adequate protein is the foundation. From there, begin to explore what foods might be triggering symptoms using an Elimination Diet or Simple Food Swaps for clear skin.
You May Also Like : Top Three Foods to Avoid with Leaky Gut
Want a diet plan for clear skin health that puts all these food swaps in place? CLICK HERE to get my skin health diet for free!
>>Download a sample recipe here: Creamy Blueberry Smoothie<<
Make a few simple swaps and see how clear skin starts from the inside!
You can save even more time (and money) by shopping pantry staples with Thrive Market!
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DISCLAIMERS: The statements made on this website are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent disease. You assume full responsibility for how you use this information. Always consult with your physician or other health professionals before making any diet or lifestyle changes. This post may contain affiliate links whereby if you purchase these products I receive a small percentage of the sale price. This allows me to keep the blog running and I thank you for allowing me to do that!