Bread & Refined Carbs May Lead to PCOS Acne
There is a link between acne and what you eat.
Eating highly processed, easily digestible foods such as refined breads and cereals causes an undesirable chain reaction in your body. First, there is an increased amount of sugar. In turn, this excess sugar forces your body to produce high levels of insulin and insulin-like growth factor (IGF-1).
Elevated insulin levels lead to an excess of masculinizing hormones, which cause pores in your skin to secrete sebum, a greasy substance that attracts acne-promoting bacteria. In addition, IGF-1 promotes the multiplication of skin cells known as keratinocytes, a process associated with acne.
Previous evidence has shown a link between insulin or IGF-1 and acne. It has been found that when IGF-1 is used to treat certain illnesses, masculinizing hormones increase, followed by acne. On the other hand, when women with PCOS were treated with the insulin-reducing drug metformin, acne was improved. Moreover, many women with acne problems overproduce insulin and IGF-1, researchers say.
If you have acne, a low-carbohydrate, low-glycemic diet may be appropriate. Modern food processing methods may alter the protein structures in the grains, leading to faster digestion followed by excess releases of insulin.
Source: Cordain L et al, Acne vulgaris: a disease of Western civilization., Arch Dermatol.,2002;138(12):1584-90