Whether you’ve got off lightly with a smattering of hormonal spots here and there, or suffered with more extensive periods of all-over pimples, we’ve all been plagued by dreaded acne at some point in our life. While spots are generally associated with the awkward teenage phase, for most of us, the issue continues into adulthood. In fact, it is estimated that in the western world between 75% and 95% of people suffer from acne at some point in their adult life.
However there are some parts of our planet where acne doesn’t exist, and completely clear skin is a reality for all.
Introducing Kitava, an island in the Pacific that is not just a paradise because of its crystal clear waters and palm-fringed beaches. It is also home to some of the world’s healthiest people, all with a perfect complexion.
The island was the subject of a skin study which saw Dr Staffan Lindeberg examining 1200 of its inhabitants over a seven week period. During his time he could not find a single person in his sample with what he would classify to be acne.
Lindeberg attributed this pattern to the nutritional habits of the Kitavans, not their genetic makeup.
The Kitavan diet is virtually uninfluenced by Western dietary habits and is made up of fresh natural foods such as vegetables, fruit, coconut and fish, and primarily void of coffee, tea, alcohol and dairy products.
If you wish to embrace the Kitavan diet there are three rules to follow. Firstly, Kitavans follow a low GI diet, this means eating foods with a low GI that release sugar slowly into the body such as sweet potatoes, rye bread or blueberries. Secondly, they eat a diet rich in omega-3 fatty acids (think fish and eggs), and thirdly they pretty much avoid dairy altogether.
And it totally makes sense, the link between a healthy and gut and healthy skin is a pretty established one.
Yep, the sad truth is it might be time to give up the cheese and chocolate.