The role of nutrition in acne pathogenesis: YouTube as a reflection of current popular thought

Skinmed. 2011 Sep-Oct;9(5):279-80.


Although studies have yet to prove definitively a causal relationship between diet and acne, the lay public has traditionally held that such causality exists. The authors' study aims to determine which nutritional elements are thought to be related to acne, both positively and negatively. YouTube, a popular video-sharing Web site, was used to survey the views of the lay public. The keywords "acne," "acne diet," and "acne food" were searched in YouTube in July and August of 2009, and 87 videos were included in the study. More than 85% of videos suggest at least a moderate correlation between diet and acne. Dairy products and oily and greasy foods were viewed as aggravating factors, while fruits, vegetables, and supplements were regarded as alleviating factors. Generally regarded "truths" can affect patient compliance with treatment regimens, and a knowledgeable physician is better able to address these issues with his or her patients.

MeSH terms

  • Acne Vulgaris / etiology*
  • Attitude to Health*
  • Data Collection
  • Diet / adverse effects*
  • Humans
  • Internet
  • Perception
  • Public Opinion
  • Video Recording