Will eating too much chocolate affect my teenage son's skin?

How much chocolate is too much chocolate and does it cause pimples?

At this time of year there are Easter eggs everywhere you turn and it’s so hard to resist! We all know life is about balance but is it really going to cause a massive outbreak of pimples if we have a few extra chocolates at Easter?

Chocolate has always been blamed for causing breakouts and acne, but the reality is that after years of research trying to link chocolate and acne, scientists haven’t been able to prove a direct link between the compounds in chocolate and acne. It’s more likely that the sugar and dairy content cause inflammation in the body which can outbreaks. 

There are several factors that can contribute to acne including hormones, stress, age and family history. One thing is certain, though: diet has a lot to do with acne production. A diet high in fat and refined sugars can increase sebum production and boost the inflammatory responses of the body, which will increase the risk of skin blemishes. High glycemic foods such as lollies, cakes, white bread, and pasta cause acne to flare up or become more severe. Dairy products and many unhealthy fats are also suspected of triggering acne.

This doesn’t mean you have to miss out on chocolate this Easter!

There are plenty of good options that can you can feel good about eating and not damaging your skin. Research has shown that cocoa beans used in dark chocolate are an excellent source of antioxidants. Dark chocolate also contains less sugar and dairy. There are many different brands that are dairy free and either low sugar or zero sugar added. There are also added benefits of eating quality dark chocolate as it contains antioxidants, flavanols and minerals. Research suggests it can also prevent heart disease, reduce inflammation and insulin resistance and improve brain function. The higher the cacao content the more beneficial the chocolate is for you! So anywhere between 70-90% cacao is a good dose of antioxidants. 

So go ahead and enjoy this Easter without feeling guilty about the amount of chocolate your teenagers are eating. Just remember that a balanced diet is essential for good skin. Most importantly of all, try and encourage your son to keep up with cleansing and moisturising their face on at least a daily basis, if not twice a day. We know it’s a lot harder in holidays to keep up with good habits, but their skin will thank you for it.