Intended for healthcare professionals

Correlation between acne and diet: A review of the evidence

Acne vulgaris affects millions of adolescents worldwide, with a prevalence approaching 95% in this age group. Clinicians are often asked what part diet, if any, plays in the condition.

There is a huge amount of advice available online – including on social media, acne forums and support groups – however the content is often poor quality with much conflicting information. Some sites claim to be educational, often led by self-proclaimed experts, and many promote a huge range of often expensive dietary products and supplements. Many affected individuals are desperate to clear their acne and so are prepared to purchase such products and make drastic dietary changes in the hope of improvement. Such changes can lead to physical (e.g. developing low vitamin D) and emotional harm (e.g. obsessive-compulsive habits and anxiety). In this article we hope to summarise a sample of the most pertinent scientific literature on the topic and identify patients’ common misconceptions, to help facilitate an evidence-based consultation.

Dermatology in practice 2020; 26(4): 92–94
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