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Healthy Diet: Sugar Consumption and Our Skin

Cube of marshmallow on spoon. The Seaweed Bath Co.

Who doesn’t love sugar? It makes almost everything taste better and can boost our mood and our energy level. However, the benefits of eating a sugary treat are only temporary and the long-term effects of sugar can be detrimental to our health and our skin.

Doctors regularly caution us about limiting our sugar intake because of its connection to a variety of health problems, including obesity, diabetes and heart disease. While it appears that very little research has been done on the correlation between sugar consumption and skin conditions such as psoriasis and eczema, health experts and organizations such as the National Psoriasis Foundation regularly recommend cutting back on sugar.

So why do experts recommend limiting your sugar intake, especially if you suffer from irritated skin conditions, such as psoriasis and eczema?

Sugar raises your body’s insulin level, which depresses your immune system. Because psoriasis is an autoimmune disorder, any effects on your immune system can turn quickly into uncomfortable flareups. Sugar intake can also cause increased inflammation in the body and skin, leading to redness and irritation of the skin, especially for irritated skin sufferers.

So the next time you are looking for something to satisfy your sweet tooth, reach for a piece of fruit (the variety is endless this summer!) or a natural sweetener such as agave nectar as a substitute in your coffee or favorite dessert recipe.

If you are concerned that you are consuming too much sugar or want to make a change in your diet, talk to your doctor about healthy diet choices that are right for you.

We want to know: Have you found that sugar intake affects the condition of your skin?

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