20150822083838!VendiagramBlue Zones have been in the media a lot lately, thanks in large part to Dan Buettner, the author of the similarly titled book, “The Blue Zones: Nine Lessons For Living Longer From The People Who’ve Lived The Longest.” Blue Zones are places in the world where people tend to live a long time. Buettner points out the following places: Okinawa (Japan), Sardinia (Italy), Nicoya (Costa Rica), Icaria (Greece), and Loma Linda (California).

The people in these areas tend to do some things that had me thinking they might also experience less acne, mainly because many of the dietary and lifestyle choices they engage in are anti-inflammatory in nature. Since acne is an inflammatory disease, it makes sense that living in a Blue Zone type of way couldn’t hurt with acne symptoms.

Keep in mind that Buettner says himself that we can’t artificially adopt the lives of these people very successfully. The way they eat and their lifestyle is woven into the fabric of their lives and communities. However, it’s interesting to see what they do and incorporate what we can, where we can.

The things all Blue Zones tend to have in common are:

Diet:
– Mostly vegetarian plant-based diet
– Lots of beans/legumes

Lifestyle:
– Family focused
– Socially engaged
– Non-smoking
– Constantly staying physically active as a part of daily life

All of these things could be argued are anti-inflammatory. Certainly a plant-based diet with lots of beans is a good low glycemic option full of antioxidants. And living in a family focused, engaged way can reduce stress, which in turn reduces inflammation. While the jury is still out on whether smoking is a big risk factor in acne, smoking causes vascular injury and we know this can lead to inflammation response in the body. And finally, staying physically active is associated with lower markers of inflammation.

We’re not likely to keep acne at bay by attempting to adopt a Blue Zone diet and lifestyle, but it might help reduce symptoms somewhat and it’s a tasty and fun way to live anyway. On that note, I’m walking to lunch today and I’m ordering tofu and veggies ๐Ÿ™‚

6 Responses to “Do people in “Blue Zones” experience less acne? I’d be curious to know.”

  • Will

    Hey, longtime follower and customer here. How is that spot treatment coming along. Are there any other new developments or ideas for products coming along the pipeline?

    I have an idea and a suggestion. I think you should have an avenue that you use to post research updates, product development updates and other acne.org related updates as to the status of the company and the products it sells. Maybe not this blog but something a little more out there and in the limelight. It should be regular like once a month or every 1st and 3rd friday or something like that. I know there have been products that have said to have been things, but we don’t get enough new information. I think there are people out their that would really be interested in Dan (especially Dan in particular) getting involved with more product development and telling us more about what is going on in the day to day. We really love the guy and his products.

  • Christine Praniewicz

    Hi there ๐Ÿ™‚

    I am vegan, no dairy or meat, with the exception of adding a little bit of fish back into my diet per my doctors request. I get exercise every day and legumes are my main source of protein. I have horrible acne, and have had horrible acne for the past 10 + years. I don’t think it has too much to do w/ blue zone. Unfortunately ๐Ÿ™

    • Anonymous

      I think being healthy in diet and lifestyle has a lot to do with it. I don’t necessarily think that certain things are to be avoided. For instance, I wouldn’t say you have to stop eating chocolate because it causes acne. However, I would say it more of a generalized thing. It is more of a practice of doing things than it is a list. I think out bodies are built and designed to be natural and experience natural. I think that in foods the processed ingredients and the artificial stuff that is used to preserve and flavor our foods are damaging our bodies greatly. I think we are designed to eat what occurs in nature naturally. So, when we have a steady intake or growth hormones, antibiotics, preservatives and such our bodies are going to spaz out and react accordingly. Same goes for what we experience. We need to be outside breathing fresh air. We need to get a daily dose of sunlight for natural vitamin D and for mental health. We need to move and get the joint lubricated and the blood pumping through our veins. We need to drink water instead of stuff colored with caramel color or red 40. We live in such a machine based, fake world that we rarely experience our surroundings full on naturally and healthy. I think that has a huge account on our health and part of that health can be seen in those suffering with acne. Diet wise, I think sugar plays a huge factor as well as empty carbohydrates. I think that lack of balance plays a huge factor. We need nutrients. We need protein. we need fat. We don’t need sugars and flours. When our body adjusts and starts getting healthy again I think that people will see a huge difference. This isn’t to say it is a complete cure. The acne.org regimen is amazing and might still be necessary for some people. I think, though, this two things working in tandem will help speed the process along greater then can imagine.

  • Anon

    I ate fries everyday it was just something I just loved but I was also getting acne everyday I would wake up with a new one all the time, I eliminated everything bad mostly from my diet and took so much stuff and put so much stuff on my face. I never thought fries would be something that could possibly be the reason for my break outs because I was also making my own fries with good oils, so one day I read potatoes were high in glycemic index and that could cause acne that’s when I figured it was most likely the fries and anything that was high in glycemic index. I started taking GLA which also has done wonders for my skin,I still do get that occasional pimple and sometimes huge pimples but nothing like I was ever getting before and especially not every morning, I also sometimes don’t even have to wash my face and I could still have sweets just as long as it’s not processed sugar I can have cane sugar which doesn’t seem to be a problem or better yet bake with or find products with erythritol which tastes just as sweet as the crap sugar.

  • vignesh

    dan i am very grateful for the work you are doing. i think you are the only one who keeps it 100% real with everything you say and write.. i follow the regimen and have finally gotten clear. i have tried everything from accutane and antibiotics and every single over the counter treatment there is….they all worked but my acne would return with a vengeance as soon as i stop popping those pills,the regimen is the only one thats given me consistent results. i still have some scars from my intense acne left though which the regimen is slowly fading.
    i really hope and wish you posted more often on your blog though, because there is nothing like a post from you on your blog or website to give me a jolt of motivation… thanks again for what you do….with gratitude from india .