Is your diet ruining your complexion?

2 November 2015

What does your face say about your diet? We’ve probably all looked a little grey the morning after a night out, or eaten too much greasy take-away and been left with a blemishes. But did you know changes in pigmentation, premature wrinkles and dark circles under the eyes can all also be caused by the things we eat and drink?

In her new book celebrity Dermatologist Nigma Talib explains the common skin complaints caused by poor diet and food intolerances.  Here’s a quick guide to some of the signs to watch out for and the treatments that could help restore your complexion.

  • Wine Face

Nigma describes this as ‘wine face’ because her patients tend to be ladies who enjoy a glass or two of wine most nights of the week, but in fact the damage can be caused by any type of alcohol.

Common symptoms of wine face include large pores and dehydrated skin, redness on the cheeks and nose, pronounced lines around the nose and mouth and premature lines and wrinkles.

Many of these issues are caused by the dehydrating effects of alcohol; because the skin is starved of moisture the appearance of lines and wrinkles is worsened. This isn’t helped by the high sugar content in wine and alcohol, which damages protein collagen so the skin loses its natural elasticity.

Alcohol is also one of the common triggers of Rosacea, similarly to spicy foods or hot drinks, it can dilate the capillaries across the cheeks and nose, causing a rosy complexion.

To correct alcohol damaged skin Nigma recommends taking a complete break from alcohol for around three weeks and then using an 80/20 rule to moderate your intake. You can also give your complexion a boost with treatments like the Dermaroller, which uses micro needles to stimulate the body’s natural recovery process, reducing the appearance of lines and wrinkles as well as boosting collagen production.

  • Sugar Face

Sweet foods can be difficult to resist, but over indulging in refined sugars can be disastrous for your complexion! Symptoms of sugar face include pustular spots, thinning skin and a pale, grey skintone.

Too much sugar disrupts the delicate internal balance of your digestive system, which can lead to painful, puss filled blemishes on the face, neck and shoulders. Sugary foods can even trigger the production of the stress hormone cortisol, which obstructs blood flow to the face, creating the unhealthy, pale hue associated with sugar face.

Cutting back on sugar will have an immediately beneficial impact of your complexion. A good place to start is cutting out excessively sugary foods from your diet, treats like biscuits, cake and chocolate are all packed with unhealthy amounts of sugar.

If you’re struggling with blemishes, you can speed up your skin’s recovery with a number of Acne Solutions. A combination of treatments like the Obagi Blue Skin Peel, PPx Laser and Dermal Roller will help clear the spot causing bacteria from your face and repair the scarring which can occur from acne blemishes.

  • Gluten Face

Gluten intolerance is a very common digestive sensitivity and can leave suffers feeling bloated, swollen and uncomfortable after eating foods like pasta and bread.

A gluten intolerance can also affect your complexion, causing dark spots and bags under the eyes. Many rosacea patients have found illuminating gluten from their diet has helped control the condition as well.

Gluten is such a common ingredient at first it can feel tricky to avoid, though an increasing number of gluten free alternatives to bread, pasta and cakes are now available.  If you want to correct the dark spots caused by a gluten intolerance a Skin Peel would be an effective solution. By removing the surface layers of skin cells, the peel can remove the discolouring leaving patients with a clear, younger looking complexion.  

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Image credit: Marietjie/ Shutterstock