Medical Q&As

Acne - due to allergy?

I am almost 27 years of age and suffer from acne. I would have thought that I would have grown out of it by now. I wash very regularly, with various soaps and scrubs, and therefore shouldn’t really have this problem. So I am coming to the conclusion that it is caused by my diet. Do you think an allergy test might diagnose an allergy to something that may be causing this?

Acne mainly affects adolescents but some people can be affected right up to their thirties. It happens as a result of plugging of the skin pores with sebum or oil. The sebum is irritating to the surrounding skin and this gives rise to the inflammation seen in the various pimples and pustules on the skin. Bacteria flourish in this environment thereby aggravating the condition. Despite the common perception that greasy foods cause the condition there is no evidence to support that view. In fact the evidence is entirely the opposite. Despite extensive studies medical investigators have not found any link between diet and acne. I do not believe that allergy testing would be helpful to you. Your suggestion about allergy testing seems to be based on your surprise at continuing to suffer from the condition into your twenties. As previously stated your situation is not unusual. I would suggest that you visit your GP who can advise you further and recommend or prescribe a tablet, cream or lotion, which I am quite confident will bring your acne under satisfactory control.