A review carried out by the University of Hull has shed new light on the relationship between acne and diet.

Published in Dermatological Nursing, the comprehensive review assesses the latest evidence and findings about the effects of food and nutrition on acne and suggest that high glycemic index foods and milk could exacerbate the skin condition.

The review was carried out by HONEI (Humber Obesity Nutrition Education and Innovation) a centre for food research, based at the University of Hull.

Acne is one of the most common skin conditions and is often associated with adolescents but its prevalence among adults is increasing.

Facial acne can be stigmatising and deeply upsetting. Research has shown that the adverse social, psychological and emotional effects of acne can be comparable to those of more serious chronic conditions such as; epilepsy, diabetes arthritis or psoriasis.

Extensive studies have been carried out to assess the impact diet has on acne and research has so far suggested some diets, such as those containing high glycemic index foods and milk can exacerbate acne.

HONEI is a world-leading centre of food related research and has previously conducted studies into the effect of dark chocolate on cholesterol levels as well as studies on soy to determine whether it could help combat certain health problems associated with osteoporosis and type 2 diabetes. HONEI is also currently undertaking extensive research into the benefits of polyphenols on cardiovascular health.

Dr Katerina Steventon, Research Fellow with HONEI and the University of Hull's Faculty of Health and Social Care, said: "There is growing evidence of the link between diet and acne which is becoming stronger as new evidence comes to light, although nothing has been fully proven yet, it is only a matter of time.

"The research review suggests a low glycemic index diet but also a healthy diet, rich in fruit and vegetables, can have a protective effect on acne. Further research is needed to fully understand the role diet plays in acne in specific populations."

HONEI will be carrying out its own primary research examining the effects of certain foods on acne later this year.