Is sugar actually bad for your skin?
We all love the sweet stuff, but some of us indulge a little more often than we should…
The answer is YES. We did not want to hear it either but let’s face the truth. No amount of amazing skincare products will help your skin if you have a sugar high diet. Do not trust us? Test this yourself! All you have to do is eat it on the daily basis and then pay attention to the way your skin reacts. Trust us, it’s not pretty.
Sugar is acidic and causes inflammation in the body. Not only does this increase your risk of disease, it contributes to skin issues too.
Here’s just a few ways sugar can negatively impact your skin.
Sugar actually increases sebum levels in your skin, which in turn can contribute to clogged pores and breakouts. Sugar also affects your blood sugar levels, causing them to go up and down, which then affects your hormones. Hormonal breakouts are usually very painful and most commonly seen on the chin, cheeks and jawline.
Eczema flare ups
If you suffer with a sensitive skin or inflammatory skin condition such as eczema or psoriasis then sugar will only contribute to the problem, as it causes major inflammation in the system.
Dry, dull skin
Did you know that sugar actually saps water out of your cells, leaving your skin dull and dehydrated with a higher risk of developing lines and wrinkles?
You may think that soda pop is hydrating you, but it’s actually doing the opposite. Opt for water instead or kombucha!
We PREVIOUSLY WROTE on what factors can cause premature aging of your skin and this is another one to add. Just when you think it couldn’t get any worse, you find out that sugar can not only contribute to annoying blemishes, it can age your skin at the same time!
Sugar attaches itself to proteins in the bloodstream, which form molecules that then attack collagen and elastin. Collagen is a structural protein essential for keeping your skin plump and firm by fighting off lines and wrinkles, whereas elastin offers support to your skin preventing saggy skin.
How to slowly wean off sugar
Cutting sugar out of your diet may sound scary and seem impossible, but these simple tips will help to make it a little easier:
- Balanced diet with regular controlled portions is key in controlling your sugar urges. Our body has developed to like fast carbs (such as sugar) because these are the quickest way of getting extra energy. If you are skipping breakfast or lunch your energy level goes down and therefore you are more likely to grab a sugary drink or a snack as a quick fix.
- Eat lots of fiber. We mean it – LOTS. It slows down the speed of digestion of food and therefore helps you feel full for longer.
- Try swapping your favorite desert for a plate of fruit. It will be difficult at first but it will make you feel so much better – we promise!
- Avoid artificial sweeteners as they are full of chemicals and not at all good for your health. They may not be sugar as such but they send a confusing signal to your brain that you are eating sugar which triggers insulin production and the whole cycle of sugar high/sugar low.
- Don’t be fooled by brown sugar. It may not have been refined as much as white sugar, but it is still processed and it is still bad for your health and your skin.
- Always check labels, because sugar is in almost everything, even tomato sauce!
- Avoid simple carbohydrates such as white rice or white bread and opt instead for healthy grains such as quinoa, brown rice and multi-grain bread.
Fruit smoothies tend to also be quite high in sugar so be sure to check the label or better yet, make one yourself so you know exactly what’s going into it! This green smoothie is low in sugar and will leave you feeling energized and your skin glowing.