Is there a link between Acne and Lactose Intolerance (Dairy Intolerance)?
There is no link between lactose intolerance and acne. However, there is a link between consuming dairy products and acne.
What is Acne?
Acne is defined as a skin condition characterized by red pimples on the skin, mostly on the face, due to inflamed or infected sebaceous glands and prevalent chiefly among adolescents.
Why is Dairy Products bad for Acne?
- Dairy products, especially milk, contain hormones that caused inflammation in humans and results in acne. These hormones are naturally found in cows which are produced during their menstrual cycle and are continuously produced when the cow is pregnant.
- Dairy products result in an insulin spike in humans affecting the liver and causing acne.
- Dairy products producers a type of oil called sebum. Sebum causes acne, clogged and bacteria that causes inflammatory by-products.
- Dairy prohibits your dead skin to leave the body naturally, thus blocking your pores and leading to acne.
What about hormone-free milk?
Ther is no such thing as hormone free milk! The hormones found in milk are naturally produced and are removed. When farmers talk about hormone -free milk, they mean they do not inject hormones into the cows.If you are lactose intolerant and using an enzyme supplement such as Lactaid when consuming hormone-free, you are still susceptible to acne.
Will lactose-free milk cause acne?
Lactose-free milk is safe to drink for lactose intolerant individuals. Since there is no link between acne and lactose intolerance, lactose-free milk still contains the hormones that cause acne.
What if I use a lactase enzyme when consuming organic milk?
Organic milk means that the milk contains fewer pesticides and insecticides. This means the cows are healthier and will produce more hormones in the milk. The enzyme will break down the lactose but will not remove the hormones.
How do I keep my acne under control?
The first step is to stop consuming dairy at all. Now it is time to go on a dairy free diet. Make sure you do no consume anything that comes from the cow including:
- Ice Cream
- Desserts made with dairy
- Milk Shakes
- Sour Cream
- Protein Supplements containing whey and casein (especially for those that love the gym)
There are many products and foods that contain milk, so always read the label before consuming (Click here to learn more about products that contain milk or dairy)
Speak to your GP or dermatologist about how the duration of your dairy free diet. Generally, to clean up acne you stay away from dairy completely for six months. Thereafter, you can consume dairy in small proportions depending on the way your body responds.
What foods can I consume in place of dairy products?
Instead of drinking milk, one can consume alternatives such as almond, soy, rice milk or coconut milk. Do not drink goat milk or consume goat cheese as these also contain hormones that will increase acne. There are other substitutes that can be consumed in place of butter, creamers, and other products.
Calcium intake from non-dairy products
Lactose and Dairy Free Foods with their Calcium Content:
- White Beans: 1 cup = 191mg
- Canned Salmon: Half can = 232mg
- Sardines: 7 Sardine Fillets = 321mg
- Dried Figs : 8 whole dried figs = 107mg
- Bok Choy: 1 cup = 74mg
- Blackstrap Molasses : 1 tablespoon = 176mg
- Kale: 2 cups raw = 188mg
- Black eyed peas: half cup = 185mg
- Almonds: quarter cup half roasted = 72mg
- Oranges: 1 medium size = 65mg
- Turnip Greens: 1 cup cooked = 197mg
- Sesame Seeds: 1 tablespoon = 88mg
- Seaweed: 1 cup raw = 88mg
- Instant Oatmeal: 1 cup = 187mg
- Orange Juice: 1 cup = 500mg
- Soy Milk: 1 cup = 300mg
- Firm Tofu: half cup = 861mg
- Cheerios: 1 cup = 114mg
There is no correlation between lactose intolerance and acne. But there is a strong correlation between dairy products and acne. If you are serious about clearing your acne, begin by stop consuming dairy. Do not forget to supplement your calcium from non-dairy foods as listed above.
For any questions about acne and dairy products, please comment in the comment section below.