Dairy and Acne
Will Cutting It Out Really Clear Your Skin?

Dairy and acne - is it actually a thing? For some people, it really can make a difference. Details on how to find out if it's you, and what to do about it on this page: 

Dairy and acne

Drinking/eating dairy can be a significant acne cause for some people - and there is an easy way to find out if it's the missing link in clearing up your acne condition

Then you are one step closer to eliminating your acne problem. At the very least, it can have an improvement on the severity of breakouts and cysts. Ready?!

(This article is a guide only - please be sure to consult your health care professional before attempting any diet change).

What is the Link Between Dairy and Acne?

The common theory is that hormones in dairy products can cause over-production of our own hormones. 

Studies are fairly inconclusive (source). But bonafideskincare.com is dedicated to providing information that works, so whether it's been scientifically proven or not isn't our main focus - cutting out dairy has helped numerous people and it could help you - that's our main focus!

If it does clear your skin... do you really care if the studies concur or not?

The Possibility Of Lactose Intolerance

One reason why cutting out dairy may work for some and not others is the presence of a slight lactose intolerance, especially if you also experience indigestion. Talk to your doctor who can do an allergy test

Is It a Contributor to Adult Acne?

Cutting out dairy products can make a major difference to adult acne in particular. A slight lactose intolerance/sensitivity can become more common as you get older (source WebMD - includes symptoms).

Adult acne is more often attributed to outside factors such as diet, stress etc, rather than your body's natural reaction to the inevitable influx of hormones at puberty.

The Simple Way To Determine Whether Dairy Is Causing Your Acne!

Completely eliminate it from your diet for a short period of time and monitor the results.

If your skin clears up, you know it contributes. Simple right?

And it is important to completely eliminate it - even small amounts can affect some people. 

(Completely eliminating all dairy long term is often not necessary - but for clear, quality results during your test it is!) 


For a period of at least 7days, cut out all dairy/lactose, this includes:

  • milk, cheese, yoghurt, cream
  • creamy/cheesy soups, butter
  • chocolate, salad dressings, mayonaise
  • anything containing milk products/lactose (including baked goods like muffins etc)
  • read labels - sticking to a simple but mostly natural, nutritious diet is easiest
  • more info on a lactose free diet see here

Try not to change anything else in your routine during this time. It is important to follow an otherwise healthy diet (almonds, sardines, broccoli are good sources of calcium).

What Next? Results Or Not...

After 7 days, what did you notice?

  • did your skin clear up entirely?
  • did your breakouts reduce in severity or number?
  • is your skin less red/inflamed/irritated?
  • have you noticed an improvement at all?

Then, experiment by reintroducing dairy - this is when the results become really clear!

Have some of your dairy favorites - a glass of milk or a cheese platter, then notice your skin in the next 24hours. If dairy plays a big role in your acne, it will happen very quickly and noticeably. 

Then, you choose whether to permanently eliminate this item from your diet or not (it may be worth it!)

You Don't Have To Permanently Delete Everything!

Slowly reintroduce items to your diet and keep monitoring your skin. It may just be milk that you need to steer away from (or ice cream like me...).  

And don't forget - there are great milk replacements like almond, coconut etc. Do your research and talk to your doctor. If you've found your skin really clears up when eliminating dairy products, do all you can to incorporate this into your lifestyle!

Conclusion:

  • while dairy hasn't been shown to absolutely be linked to acne, a large number of people see great results with eliminating or reducing
  • the only way to know if it's right for you is to try!
  • cut out all dairy for 7 days (maintain a healthy diet otherwise)
  • monitor your skin - you might like to keep a food journal and take before and after photos to help
  • at the end of 7 days, whether you see improvement or not, have some of your favorite dairy food and monitor your skin's reaction for 24hours
  • if acne gets worse - that's a food your body doesn't agree with!
  • re-introduce foods this way (if you want), continue to monitor the results and consider incorporating this into your lifestyle

Remember, curing your acne is a case of trial and error. Here are some other suggestions for you:



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