CIGNA members: Please note that you may receive a letter in the mail stating that The Dermatology Center of Indiana is no longer in your network. This communication from CIGNA is incorrect and we would like to reassure you that we are still in network with CIGNA. We look forward to continuing to service you and your family for all your dermatology needs.

Five Acne Causing Foods to Avoid for Clearer Skin

Clearer skin may be remedied by eliminating certain foods from your diet.  Things like refined grains, sugars and soda may not be helping your efforts to obtain radiant skin.  Here is a brief look at those troublesome foods and some alternatives to those foods. 

Pasta, bread, cereals, sugar and white rice are all refined grains and sugars.  The effects of those foods may not just impact one’s blood sugar and insulin levels, but the increased amount of insulin also contributes to the amount of acne a person may have.  Increased insulin can cause skin cells to grow more quickly and boost sebum production, which contributes to acne development. 

Dairy products have been linked to acne over and over especially in teens.  Like refined grains, milk increases insulin and insulin-growth factor 1 thus increases acne production. 

Additional research is needed to determine what types of dairy products and how much of those dairy products really should be a part of the diet to limit acne. 

Fast food is high in calories, fat and refined carbohydrates.  While these are popular and convenient, the potential increase in acne may not be worth it.  Fast food is higher in saturated fats and which can lead to more breakouts. Studies have shown that when participants increase the amount of fast food in their diets, a large percentage of the participants reported an increase in acne.

Chocolate has been a long-time debated acne trigger.  The immune system and acne-causing bacteria has been thought to reactive negatively to chocolate.  It is uncertain if it increases the acne already in production or if chocolate itself is what causes the acne. 

Soda is loaded with sugar and some researchers put soda and alcohol in the same boat as to how it negatively affects your body.  Switching out water for that sugar-laden drink will positively affect your blood sugar and help your body maintain a healthy insulin level.

While some of these foods are still being debated if they cause acne, it is never a bad idea to reduce the amount of ‘junk’ food you eat and replace with healthy fruits and vegetables.

If you are still suffering from acne, we have many options we can provide you with to treat your acne.  Some of those options include prescription creams as well as oral medications.  For patients who are struggling with difficult to treat acne, they may be a good fit for a clinical trial.

Call our office to schedule an appointment to learn more about the acne treatments we can offer you. To learn more about the clinical trials we have available, click here (

Disclaimer: This blog provides general information and discussion about medical, cosmetic, mohs, and surgical dermatology. The words and other content provided in this blog, and in any linked materials, are not intended and should not be construed as medical advice. If the reader or any other person has a medical concern, he or she should consult with an appropriately-licensed dermatologist or other health care worker.