man with clear skin

Men are far more aware than they have ever been about the importance of a good skincare regime in clearing and preventing breakouts. But, there is still some resistance to look at the root cause of any persistent skin issues. Moving from one brand or one type of product to another is not always the answer. Looking at your diet and overall lifestyle might remove the myth of those ‘hereditary’ skin issues you’ve always had.

Problem skin whether big or small can have a big impact on a man’s self confidence. If you know you have a good skincare regime sorted, then this guide might help you look at the bigger picture and combat some niggling complexion issues you have been having.

Past research has shown that it is important for men to take a closer look at their diets to prevent or cure a breakout of acne. What you put in your body will have a positive or negative outcome on your skin. Following a balanced diet along with getting a good 7 or 8 hours sleep every night can drastically improve your skin.

Here are some key things to consider when looking at your diet and lifestyle.

1. Maintain Blood Sugar Levels

A spike in blood sugar levels will create more insulin in the body and there have been studies that show a link between the higher amounts of insulin in the body and onset adult skin acne.

Eat little and often. Eating small meals throughout the day is an easier way to maintain your blood sugar levels while monitoring your nutritional intake.

Vegetables are a fantastic way to give your body lots of antioxidants and a varied offering will help reduce inflammation of the skin. There are however some starchy vegetables that can increase blood sugar levels. Some good non-starchy vegetables to eat are carrots, cucumber, salad greens and cabbage.

2. Test Your Dairy Intolerance

Dairy as a cause of bad skin is not definitive. But, it has been said that milk has a link to the testosterone hormone which can stimulate oil glands. Overproduction of oil can block skin pores and result in men getting spots.

For a test, reduce your daily intake of dairy and monitor results. Thanks to the popularity of veganism there are a wealth of dairy alternatives on the shelves in our local supermarkets.

Remember, it is still important for your body to get calcium with dairy a typical source of this. So make sure you up to your intake in kale, broccoli and sardines to get it from these foods instead.

3. Reduce Fatty Acids

The fatty acids we are referring to are typically omega-6’s that can be found in vegetable oils. So put down that fried chicken and chips. Balance your intake of omega-6’s out with more fish rich in omega-3 and medically approved supplements which should help develop better skin.

4. Remove Gluten From Your Diet

Reducing or removing gluten from your diet can have a positive effect on your body. Men are used to using gluten, especially at lunchtime to bulk out their meals and encourage that ‘full feeling’. Bread or white pasta is a prime example of this. In the case of your skin though, sensitivity to gluten in some cases can create a skin rash.

Again, test reducing or eradicating gluten and monitor if you see any changes in your skin’s complexion. We always recommend seeking medical advice if you think you have received a skin rash from gluten as sensitivity to gluten could be a result of celiac disease.

5. Lower Your Alcohol Intake

I know, the one you were dreading to read. There is no hiding from it, alcohol and in particular large amounts of it are not good for the skin.

We have all woken up after a heavy night gasping for a glass of water. This is because alcohol dehydrates the skin, flushing the body of vitamins. In particular, removing Vitamin A which is vital for cell renewal and will leave you missing that fresh skin glow.

Removing vital nutrients, electrolytes and fluids because of drinking can also make your skin look puffy and lead to bloating in the face. In severe cases of high alcohol consumption over a longer period, it can cause Rosacea. This will start as flushing of the skin but can lead to that permanent redness you see on the face of the old men in your local boozer.

Conclusion

We aren’t telling men to pack up their stuff and go live in a monastery. But what we are saying is take greater care of what you are putting in your body. Take care of your body from the inside out. Skin is the largest organ on the human body so let’s start taking better care of it. Your complexion will thank us for it.

Sam Brady

Sam Brady is a menswear and grooming specialist and the founder of A Gentleman's Row.

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