5 Foods & Drinks Dermatologists Would Legitimately Never Eat


woman drinking soda
If you're struggling with your skin, the problem may not be what you're putting on it -- it could be what you're putting into it. The foods and drinks we consume impact our health in a multitude of ways and our skin is not impervious to it. 

More from CafeMom: 6 Surprisingly Healthy Foods

To help make this the summer of sexy skin, we asked licensed dermatologists what foods they avoid themselves to keep a healthy glow and reduce the effects of breakouts. 

  • Refined Sugar

    refined sugar

    "Any food with refined sugar. Sugar, especially refined sugar, is pro-inflammatory. Intake of sugary foods, such as soda and candy, many cereals and snack bars, produces an insulin spike, which stimulates inflammation. This can worsen skin conditions like acne, rosacea, eczema, and psoriasis. Diets high in sugar have also been associated with higher rates of skin cancer and wrinkles/aging of skin." -- Dr. Gary Goldenberg, assistant clinical professor of dermatology at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine and owner of Goldenberg Dermatology

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  • Skim Milk and Too Many Carbs

    carbs and Skim milk

    "Skim milk and foods that are high in carbohydrates have both been shown in the scientific literature to be linked to more acne! For this reason, if I'm having a breakout, I try to steer clear of these food groups." -- Dr. Joyce Park, dermatology resident in NYC, health and beauty blogger

  • Soda


    "It is chemical-laden, full of sodium and often high fructose corn syrup sweeteners. It has no nutritional value and is linked to a host of cancers including bladder cancer. As for the skin, heavy sodium intake can cause acne or cause flares of acne in some individuals.

    "I always recommend food that is real food for my patients for optimal function and appearance of the skin. Soda fails on all accounts." -- Dr. Robin Evans, Southern CT Dermatology and Clinical Instructor at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine

    More from CafeMom: 12 Super-Veggies You'll Vow to Start Eating ASAP

  • Non-Organic Red Meat and Poultry

    red meat

    "These products, and dairy, may change the hormonal balance in our bodies because they themselves are full of hormones and antibiotics. I advise all my patients with acne and rosacea to avoid these unless they are hormone- and antibiotic-free. Antibiotics in foods have also been associated with reducing gut bacteria, which is anti-inflammatory and reduces oxidative stress. This is important for skin health and anti-aging." -- Dr. Goldenberg

  • Foods With Pesticides


    "High pesticides in foods have been associated with cancer, including skin cancer, and advanced aging/wrinkles. I advise all my patients to avoid foods high in pesticides, such as the dirty dozen, and increase intake of organic produce." -- Dr. Goldenberg

healthy choices