Does alcohol cause acne? Let’s explore

Does alcohol cause acne? Let’s explore

Alcohol consumption is frequently associated with early signs of aging, damaged hair health, disturbed sleep patterns, and weight gain among others. Apart from the effects mentioned above, it is also known to adversely affect beauty and skin care. In the same context, a new concern of whether alcohol can lead to acne also has recently surfaced.

Past studies have confirmed that alcohol wreaks havoc on the skin by snatching its moisture, causing it to wrinkle, breaking the capillaries and bloating the tissues to make the face appear red and swollen. Despite the fact that research on alcohol and acne is limited, the few that have been done suggest a possible link between the two.

Ideally, acne is caused due to reasons like bacteria, inflammation and clogged pores. Additionally, lifestyle factors including eating oily food, wearing excessive make-up or overuse of chemical skin products can also cause acne. Taking these factors into consideration, drinking alcohol does not appear to directly affect or cause acne. However, as alcohol tends to alter the way oxygen and other nutrients work inside the body, its indirect link to acne cannot be denied. Below are the few changes caused by alcohol consumption that may lead to an acne breakout:

Affecting hormonal level: Drinking excessive alcohol can increase the levels of testosterone and estrogen in the body. A rise in the levels of these hormones can influence the oil glands to produce more sebum, which clogs the pores, thereby causing acne.

Catalyzing bacteria growth: According to studies, alcohol fuels the growth of Cutibacterium acnes – a bacteria identified to contribute significantly to the inflammatory response in acne vulgari.

Aggravating inflammation: Alcohol is known to increase the levels of cytokines in the body. Cytokines are a broad and loose category of small proteins that signals the immune system to fight bacteria. Any increase in the levels of these proteins not only raises the risk of developing acne but also plays an important role in the early stages of acne formation.

Damaging liver: The effect of alcohol on liver is widely known. However, liver is also one of the essential body organs that contributes significantly in ensuring a clear skin. It helps maintain steady blood sugar levels, regulates a number of hormones and also removes toxins from the body. Therefore, any harm or damage to the organ can effectively trigger an acne breakout.

Increasing sugar content: Alcohol and alcoholic beverages are loaded with sugar and excessive sugar can harm the skin by causing inflammation, irritation and painful pimples. Moreover, a high sugar content in the body makes it insulin resistance. Further, higher levels of insulin increase the production of IGF-1, which is the growth hormone directly correlated with acne.

Overcoming harms of alcohol

Considering the research presented above, there is no denying the fact that there is a link between alcohol consumption and acne. Although, experts believe alcohol to start damaging the body from the first sip, it is always after heavy or excessive consumption that the harmful effects are visible. Hence, majority of the people seek treatment only when they reach the advanced stages of alcoholism. Fortunately, it is possible to treat alcoholism at any stage with the help of certified medical professionals.

If you or your loved one is suffering from an alcohol use disorder, contact the Alcohol Addiction Helpline of California. Call at our 24/7 helpline 855-980-1715 to get in touch with the finest California alcohol treatment centers. You can even chat online with our certified representatives who can give you all the information you need about Los Angeles alcohol treatment centers.

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