Being a teenager is not always fun. All those hormones raging, body changes you do not know what to do with, acne” ¦Acne have been causing untold misery to millions of teenagers throughout history. At the age when the way you look is of utmost importance, your face looks like full of moon craters. While antibiotics can help, and there are many face creams and lotions for treating acne, they are not easy to get rid of. Scientists are now experimenting with a family of viruses called phage, which promise very good results in killing acne-causing bacteria.
What is acne ?
You get acne when the pores in your skin get clogged with oil, old skin and dirt. It usually happens when the skin produces too much oil, creating a perfect environment for bacteria. While there are many kinds of bacteria normally living on our skin, the one responsible for acne is called Propionibacterium acnes. Bacteria cause inflammation that shows as angry eruptions on your skin.
One of the most common causes for acne is increased hormonal activity, common in puberty.
While healthy nutrition can make a great difference in keeping skin less oily and less prone to inflammation by bacteria, it is not always enough.
Scientists from the University of Pittsburgh have studied 11 viruses called phage, known for their ability to infect and kill bacterium Propionibacterium acnes, responsible for acne. Their findings show great promises and hope for miserable teenagers, but also for many other people who are suffering from acne. Propionibacterium acnes can cause post-operative infections and infections of the joints, bones, mouth, eye and even brain.
Scientists found that the phages have a gene that produces a protein endolysin, an enzyme that breaks down walls of bacterial cells, killing the bacteria. Endolysin produced by phages could be used as a very effective topical anti-acne medication.
The results of the new study have been published in mBio ®, the journal of the American Society for Microbiology.
Until this new medication becomes available, try beating acne with healthy nutrition. Drink at least eight glasses of water daily, to flush out toxins and eat foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-3 is known for its anti-inflammatory properties. Load up on fish, walnuts, flaxseed oil and beans. Cut on sugar, especially sugary drinks and sodas, and increase amount of fresh vegetables. They are rich in anti-oxidants, another inflammation-fighting compound.