Skin and Diet
by Katta MD
DOES YOUR DIET AFFECT YOUR SKIN?
Of course it does. We've known this for centuries.
What we haven't known is exactly how this works. What types of skin conditions are affected by diet? We know vitamin deficiencies definitely affect the skin, but are there foods that promote healthy skin? How exactly do foods affect the skin? Can we get any of the same benefits by taking supplements?
Research in this area has exploded over the last decade.
My mission is to discuss the results of this research, and to translate those results into practical recommendations for the rest of us.
Can diet help to prevent aging of the skin? Absolutely.
Does diet affect acne? For some people (not all), absolutely.
Can certain foods help in the treatment of eczema? Maybe.
Can certain foods help in the treatment of psoriasis? Researchers haven't pinpointed any yet, but dietary recommendations are now becoming a standard of care for psoriasis patients. (That's because psoriasis patients are prone to developing other inflammatory conditions, such as diabetes and heart disease, and diet is an important aspect of prevention.)
Can the foods that help the skin also promote overall health and wellness? Absolutely.
It's obvious that this is a complex area, and it's one in which recommendations are evolving as the results of more research studies become available.
Throughout my training, and in my earlier years of practice, I didn't focus on diet. While I've always believed it to be incredibly important for health and wellness, there just wasn't much research available to guide me in making recommendations to patients.
That's now changed. There's a growing body of research to help dermatologists provide evidence-based advice to our patients. I eat this stuff up; every time I read a new research study that's evaluating diet and dermatology, I'm evaluating that study. Is this a well-done study? Is it strong evidence? How can I translate the study results into practical recommendations for my patients?
That's my goal with this website and blog: providing evidence-based advice on what to eat for skin health. If you want to get started now, this link provides information on the scientific basis behind these dietary recommendations.
For specific skin conditions, see the buttons at the top of the page
For access to review articles on skin and diet (published in medical journals) link here.
For an overview of the dietary recommendations that constitute a healthy skin diet, link here