Can My Diet Lead To PCOS Acne?

People often suspect their PCOS acne could be caused by their diet. Some people blame chocolate and greasy or fried foods for causing acne. While it has not been proven that chocolate or greasy or fried foods cause acne, a healthy diet can help treat acne-especially in women who have PCOS.

Causes of PCOS Acne

Acne is caused by oil, bacteria, and skin cells clogging your skin’s pores. Medical research has proven that women who have PCOS have elevated levels of androgen, which causes an increase in the production dihydrotestosterone (DHT). An increase in DHT increases oil production, which can result in clogged pores and acne on your face, jawline, neck, chest, and back.

Diet Recommendations to Reduce PCOS Acne

Eating a nutritious PCOS diet can help treat acne is most PCOS patients who have insulin resistance. Research has indicated that processed, refined carbohydrates and sugars can increase acne in PCOS patients. This is because refined carbs, such as white bread, white rice, and refined sugars in desserts and soft drinks, have a high glycemic index. This causes your body to create more insulin, and the increased insulin raises your androgen levels, causing acne flare-ups.

It is recommended that you replace foods containing refined carbs with unprocessed, whole grain carbohydrates such as wheat bread and brown rice. Many health care providers and nutritionists also recommend limiting your intake of foods that contain trans fatty acids, and partially hydrogenated oils, to improve your complexion.


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  • Priya

    PCOS acne is caused by the elevated androgen levels in the body. But, many are not aware of the fact that it can be caused by elevated estrogen levels as well. In my case for example, my androgen levels were normal but I had slightly higher estrogen levels.My acne pretty much cleared up during breastfeeding due to low estrogen levels.