Nutritional factors associated with acne vulgaris
Patton, Elaura Elizabeth
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Acne Vulgaris is a common dermatological condition defined as a chronic inflammatory dermatosis of the pilosebaceous unit that affects more than 17 million Americans.^1 Although it is not considered a dangerous condition, it may drastically impair quality of life and leave a substantial psychological impact.^2 Acne’s multifactorial pathogenesis is typically categorized into four aspects: increased sebum production, altered keratinization, inflammation, and bacterial colonization.^3 Dietary factors contribution to the pathogenesis of acne has remained controversial throughout the literature. However, currently there exists a greater understanding between how diet may influence endocrine factors contributing to acne pathogenesis.^4 Additionally, recent published evidence and public paradigm shifts highlighting the relationship between diet and health have caused a resurgence of this topic, particularly among patients seeking a more gentle, alternate solution to current treatments. Some of the most promising recent correlating evidence supports an association between acne prevalence and dairy consumption, particularly skim milk consumption.^5 It is hypothesized that milk consumption affects the presence of both reproductive, non-reproductive hormones, and growth factors in our body, which may contribute to increased acne prevalence.^6 However, there has been a lack of randomized controlled trials to determine the cause and effects nature of this relationship, as all previous studies are observational.^1 Therefore, this study will conduct a randomized controlled trial to determine the significance between dietary non-fermented dairy consumption and acne prevalence in adolescents. We hypothesize the adaptation of a diet of decreased dairy consumption will decrease the prevalence or severity of acne vulgaris in adolescents between the ages of 13-18. It is our hope that the conclusion of this study will advance our understanding of the dietary correlation between dairy and acne vulgaris in order to provide further insight to guide medical practitioners’ ability to help treat this distressing condition.