Acne develops when pores or follicles become blocked with oil and infection, and inflammation sets in. However, your diet may also play a role in acne, increasing oiliness in your skin, for instance. The role of specific foods, such as apple juice, on acne is still being studied by researchers. But early study findings suggest that some components in foods may be beneficial or harmful.
Fiber in Apple Juice
If you make apple juice at home, you can keep the fiber from the skin and pulp in the juice. Fiber helps to stabilize blood glucose and insulin levels. Insulin is a hormone that increases inflammation and oiliness in the skin --- major factors in acne formation. However, commercially prepared apple juices found at your supermarket typically do not contain much fiber; instead, they usually contain high levels of sugar.
Antioxidants in Apple Juice
Apples give your diet an antioxidant boost. Polyphenol antioxidants found in apples help to fight free radicals, which are unstable oxygen molecules that damage cells and tissues. Free radicals increase inflammation-causing proteins in your body called cytokines. By helping to stabilize free radicals, apples may help lower inflammation. However, most of the polyphenols in apples are in the skin, so you would need to drink apple juice that contains the skin to get the maximum benefit.
Sugar and Acne
Like other fruits, apples are rich in sugar. Eating one apple won't wreak too much havoc on your blood glucose levels, but apple juice may be made from several apples, thereby significantly increasing your sugar intake and the glycemic index of the juice. Furthermore, store-bought apple juice may contain more sugar than it does apples. A high-glycemic diet increases hormones and insulin growth factor-1 and may aggravate acne, according to a study published in the journal "Molecular Nutrition and Food Research" in 2008.
What You Can Do
You'll be able to control your acne more successfully with the guidance of a dermatologist. A nutritionist can also recommend ways to change your diet to improve acne. The effects of apple juice in acne may vary from person to person. Monitor your skin to see if drinking apple juice makes it worse or better. If you tend to get more acne breakouts after drinking apple juice, then limit your intake. Also, remember that it's best to drink 100 percent, unsweetened apple juice with the fiber from skin and pulp in it.
- "Prescription for Natural Cures"; James F. Balch, M.D. et al.; 2011
- EurekAlert!: Red Delicious, Northern Spy Apples Have Most Antioxidants, Chemists Find
- OurHealthCoop.com: "Our Health News"; Free Radicals and Inflammation; 2005
- North Dakota State University: Fresh Squeezed Facts; Julie Garden-Robinson, Ph.D., L.R.D., et al.; Feb. 2000
- "Molecular Nutrition and Food Research"; A Pilot Study to Determine the Short-Term Effects of A Low Glycemic Load Diet on Hormonal Markers of Acne: A Nonrandomized, Parallel, Controlled Feeding Trial; R. Smith et al.; June 2008