3 Ways To Indulge In Sweets Without Harming Your Skin

3 Ways To Indulge In Sweets Without Harming Your Skin

People with acne occasionally face difficult challenges, sugar for example. There’s no doubt that sugar contributes to acne, so you should do your best to avoid it. On the other hand humans seem to come hardwired with sweet tooth, and I’m sure you’ve faced times when sugar cravings become almost overwhelming. In this post I’ll share a few ways you can indulge your sweet tooth without harming your skin (at least that much). So you can have your cake and eat it too.

Fruits and smoothies

Fruits are nature’s candy. They have sugar to ease those cravings, but because of all the fiber most fruits fall into low to medium GI range. Some good low GI fruits include:

  • Apples and pears
  • Cherries
  • Berries: blueberries and strawberries
  • Citrus fruits, like grapefruits and oranges
  • Grapes

You can also turn fruits into healthy smoothies. Try the following recipes:

Banana chocolate shake

  • 1 or 2 bananas
  • ½ cup of coconut milk or 1 cup of soy milk (or other milk substitute)
  • 1 ½ tablespoons of cocoa powder

Banana strawberry smoothie

  • 2 bananas
  • 1 ½ cup of coconut milk (or other milk substitute)
  • Handful of mild tasting green, leafy vegetables (optional)
  • Handful or two of strawberries (frozen or fresh)

While these recipes call for bananas that have somewhat higher GI, sugar absorption is blunted by the other ingredients, so are still easy on blood sugar level and don’t cause massive insulin spikes. If you make the smoothies with coconut milk they are high in fat and calories and thus make for excellent meals.

Artificial sweeteners

You can also substitute sugar for artificial sweeteners. Artificial sweeteners taste sweet but have no or negligible effect on blood sugar level.

Artificial sweeteners are a controversial subject in the natural health industry, with some people claiming they can cause a wide range of health problems, especially neurological problems. I personally don’t find such claims very credible.

Most of the controversy surrounds aspartame. Yet, the research on safety of aspartame has been reviewed by food safety authorities of several countries who have all accepted aspartame into the food supply. For the allegations against aspartame to be true, all the food safety authorities need to willingly conspire against their own people and suppress ‘damaging information’ from the public.

Furthermore, and more importantly, it assumes that scientists working on food safety issues are either part of the conspiracy or too stupid to notice the dangers of aspartame. I find this highly unlikely. The problem with this is that a scientist who would ‘expose’ the dangers of aspartame would gain instant reputation and authority. Despite these incentives, and relative simplicity of showing aspartame is dangerous, nobody has convincingly demonstrated it. That’s why I don’t put much stock in such claims.

Reduce overall carbohydrate intake

The total insulin burden on your body depends largely on how much carbohydrates you eat. The more carbohydrates you eat, the more your body needs to produce insulin, and the more prone you are to getting acne (huge oversimplification, but serves our purpose for now).

So what you could do is to make your meals mostly of fat and protein and then have something sweet for dessert, perhaps the banana chocolate shake from above. Since your meals are low in carbohydrates having something sweet after the meal won’t overload your body with carbohydrates and insulin.

That’s it, with these three tips it’s possible to occasionally indulge your sweet tooth without damaging your skin.


What’s your favorite way to satisfy sugar cravings without harming your skin? Share in the comments below!

About Me

Hi, I am Acne Einstein(a.k.a. Seppo Puusa). I'm a bit of a science nerd who is also passionate about health. I enjoy digging through medical journals for acne treatment gems I can share here. You can read more about my journey through acne and how I eventually ended up creating this.


8 thoughts on “3 Ways To Indulge In Sweets Without Harming Your Skin”

  1. Didn’t u just post about how cacao is likely to make acne worse? – so whats up with the chocolate shake?

    • I wouldn’t go so far as to say that chocolate causes acne. It’s possible that it affects negatively some of the factors behind acne, and thus may make some people more prone to getting acne. But at this point all we have is low quality evidence and thus can’t conclude much.

      There’s also the question that how strict you want to be with your diet. Personally I don’t see any point in being too strict with diet. I just don’t think that the benefits are worth the effort, at least for me.

      I could make an argument against almost every single foodstuff out there. So in the end you are left with almost nothing to eat. By necessity one has to make some compromises. I don’t think that using some pure cocoa in the context of otherwise good diet will do any harm.

  2. Interesting link above about lifting weights to lower blood sugar. Immediately made me think of this book: https://www.amazon.com/Dr-Bernsteins-Diabetes-Solution-Achieving/dp/0316182699/ref=cm_cr_pr_product_top which I don’t have but I remember the reviews saying he recommends resistance training. This is relevant too: https://www.realfoodnutrients.com/NewsletterArticles/LowerYourSugarLevels.htm and shows the type of training he recommend. Bernstein has diabetes himself.

  3. So basically if I reduce my carbohydrate intake, then my insulin won’t spike as much if I ate sugar right? or what?

    • You should be less concerned about a single insulin spike and more concerned with the overall daily/weekly insulin load. Moderate carb restriction will reduce the overall and long-term insulin load on your body. In that context, a single spike caused by the occasional indulgence of sugar shouldn’t be a problem. Makes sense?

  4. Seppo, I have a question. For some reason it looks like bananas always trigger acne in me and I love bananas. I am a bit afraid to try again. Do you think it’s possible that bananas trigger acne but watermelon doesn’t? Also, do you think it’s different if I live in a place where bananas grow and if the bananas I eat are imported from a far-away destination? A friend of mine from a tropical country said that bananas here are tasteless, I know it’s good to consume local fruits but still, do you think that could be a reason bananas trigger acne? Pineapples don’t seem to have this effect…

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