There is no better way to fight acne than to make your body healthy and strong. The immune system is our first line of defense from viral and bacterial infections. If you have spent a lot on acne treatment and medications and got minimal result, you should not think twice on spending money for vitamins and minerals that can help heal, control, and prevent acne naturally. Whether you are using topical or oral medication to treat acne, it is also important that you take vitamins for acne. Read more about What Causes of Acne)
Here is the list of vitamins for acne together with some minerals and food supplements that can help in your battle against acne by upholding a healthy immune system:
Vitamins for Acne
- Vitamin A. Vitamin A is one of the most essential vitamins for acne and for the body as a whole. Mostly, people think that vitamin A is just for you to maintain good vision. Not really. Vitamin A has a lot of uses in our body. It aids our body’s overall growth and development and it makes our immune system strong. As far as acne is concerned, vitamin A helps develop healthy skin. In fact, studies show that vitamin A deficiency contributes to acne development. Vitamin A is also an antioxidant that belongs to the class compound called retinoids. Retinol is the active alcohol form of vitamin A. Retin-A of vitamin A is one of the most common prescribed acne treatment by dermatologists. In fact, for severe acne cases like cystic acne, an oral acne medication called Accutane, also derived from vitamin A, is prescribed by dermatologists.
For people with inflamed acne, it is recommended that you increase your vitamin A intake. You can get vitamin A from orange and yellow fruits and vegetables like sweet potatoes and spinach. Aside from consuming food rich in vitamin A, it would also be good to take vitamin A supplements with 10,000 IU per day. This way, red, swollen acne can be prevented.
- Vitamin C. Who wouldn’t be familiar with vitamin C? We take vitamin C mainly to enhance our immune system. However, vitamin C is not just an immune system booster; it is also one of the best vitamins for acne. With acne, vitamin C works to reduce redness and inflammation. Acne mainly starts because of bacterial infection. When the body detects infection, it releases inflammatory chemical called leukotrienes to fight acne bacteria. However, acne bacteria, using its decoy system, send and redirect leukotrienes to the skin, causing inflammation and redness. In this situation, a large dose of vitamin C does not boost the immune system; rather it tones it down, decreasing the amount of leukotrienes it releases. As a result, the inflammation caused by leukotrienes will be reduced.
As standard nutrition procedure for normal adults, a large dose of vitamin C is recommended. Daily dose of vitamin C varies from 1000, 5000, or even 25000 mg to keep the whole immune system healthy. Achieving healthy or acne-free skin is not really difficult. If you can get it from natural sources, 100 mg of vitamin C per day is enough to maintain and protect your skin from acne. Vitamin C is richly found in citrus fruits, guava, kiwi fruit, bell peppers, broccoli, berries, tomatoes, papayas, and peas.
- Vitamin E. Another important vitamin for acne is vitamin E. It is a powerful antioxidant that is essential to several bodily processes. Compared to vitamin C which is water-soluble, Vitamin E is fat-soluble. Excess vitamin E is easily stored in the body’s fat tissues instead of getting flushed out through urination, unlike vitamin C. Vitamin E has 3 major benefits that can help in controlling and preventing acne.
- Vitamin E acts as a powerful antioxidant that protects all body cells from free radicals or oxygen atoms.
- Vitamin E protects cell membranes from being damaged, provides great help in skin repair, and reduces acne scars.
- Vitamin E regulates and balances the retinol (vitamin A) level in the body. Well-balanced vitamin A in the body promotes healthy skin. Low-level vitamin E causes some fatty acids in the cells to oxidize, creating a toxic effect in the cells. Unhealthy skin can lead to several skin issues including acne.
Vitamin E, as one of the few vitamins for acne, can be used in two ways. You can take vitamin E supplement orally or you can apply it topically. It is also advised to take natural or synthetic vitamin E supplement as it can be easily absorbed by the body. The recommended daily allowance (RDA) is just 22 IU; however, higher dosages are available in drugstores. Taking a higher dosage of vitamin E is not bad as long as you do not exceed 400 IU per day.
Minerals for Acne
Aside from the listed vitamins for acne above, minerals can also help fight and prevent acne. Here are some of them that can help vanish acne:
- Zinc. This mineral has so many uses in the body. To name some, zinc contributes to the overall growth and development, helps in brain functions, aids in the reproductive process, and helps boost the immune system.
Studies show that zinc deficiency is found in people with acne. So, as far as acne prevention is concerned, here are the main benefits that zinc can bring:
- Zinc is responsible in bringing vitamin A from the liver to be utilized by the body. If this is not done, vitamin A will not be utilized by the body and one of its results is unhealthy skin.
- Zinc acts as a strong antioxidant and anti-inflammatory agent that fights free radicals and reduces acne redness.
- Zinc helps in omega-3 fatty acids metabolism, which is also good for the skin.
- Zinc helps break down substance P, a chemical in the body that causes excessive oil production when people get stressed.
Examples of food rich in zinc are beans, seeds, oatmeal, lean meats, oysters, and whole grains. The recommended daily allowance (RDA) of zinc for adults is 8 to 11 milligrams. However, increasing it to a safe amount of 30 mg per day can treat acne. You can get zinc naturally from the food you eat or buy dietary supplements with zinc. Other topical products also contain zinc.
- Selenium. This is a minor type of mineral and antioxidant which protects other antioxidants in the body. Selenium works with other antioxidants such as zinc by preserving their normal level. This mineral also functions as aid to glutathione peroxidase. Glutathione peroxidase enzyme is greatly dependent on selenium and prevents acne inflammation. Studies show that people with acne has low levels of glutathione peroxidase and selenium in the blood. Research also supports that low selenium in the body contributes to inflammatory activities in acne and other skin problems. You can check and use dietary supplements that have a high selenium content to help improve acne condition.
- Omega-3 Fatty Acids. Vitamins for acne are good; but adding minerals and natural nutrients to it makes it great. Omega-3 fatty acids are one of those food nutrients highly recommended to people with acne because of its anti-inflammatory properties. As we all know, inflammation is primary to acne development. Omega-3 fatty acids work on acne by constraining two inflammatory chemicals that cause an acne breakout. These chemicals are called prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) and leukotriene B4 (LTB4).
Research shows that people with high omega-3 fatty acids in their diet are at low risk of an acne breakout. Thus, for people with acne, it is highly recommended to consume food with high omega-3 fatty acids content. Examples of these foods are oily fish like anchovies, mackerel, and sardines. Also included are flax and canola oil. On the other hand, palm oil, vegetable oil, soybean, sunflower, and peanut are foods that need to be avoided by people with acne because they can fuel the PGE2 chemical. (Read more about Foods that Cause Acne)
Aside from natural foods, you can also take omega-3 fatty acids as a supplement. A minimum of 1000 mg to a maximum of 2000mg EPA omega 3 per day is ideal for people with acne. Omega-3 fatty acid supplements are available at local drugstores.
All the vitamins for acne including the minerals mentioned above can be naturally found in food we consume every day. However, our daily food consumption is sometimes not enough to provide the amount needed to get our acne controlled and prevented. In view of this, below is the list of natural food supplement brands that you might want to consider to help you out in your battle against acne.
- Estroblock. This natural food supplement combines DIM and I3C compounds from green leafy vegetables such as kale, broccoli, and the likes. This combination compound works magic for people with acne. In fact, Estroblock is consistently rated five starts in an online shopping website. So, if you have tried all possible medications and still acne remains a problem, you might want to consider this natural food supplement.
- Jarrow Formulas Zinc Balance. Zinc contributes a lot to different bodily processes and this brand of natural food supplement is able to produce zinc monomethionine, a type of zinc which is easily and well-absorbed by the body.
- Nordic Naturals Omega-3. Fish oil or omega-3 can do lots of great things in our body. Aside from being an anti-acne agent, omega-3 can also help bring your whole body wellness. This natural food supplement is really a big deal in minimizing acne inflammation. An added factor is it’s reaping very good reviews from users on several online shopping websites.
- Now Foods Green Tea Extract 400 mg, 250 Gelatin Capsules. If you’re not into teas but you want to try green tea to help you out with your acne, here is a product for you. This product is in gelatin capsule form so it will be easy for you to take. Green tea contains powerful antioxidants including EGCG. These antioxidants that green tea has are great anti-inflammatory agents and can definitely protect you from free radicals.
- Eden Pond Turmeric Curcumin, 1000mg in Two Daily Capsules. Some may not be a fan of turmeric as a spice. But don’t you know that turmeric contains high quantity of anti-inflammatory properties? If you don’t like turmeric in your food, don’t worry because you can have its benefits in the form of capsule. This product is 100-% all natural and will greatly help tone down your acne to by diminishing the redness caused by inflammation. It is also rated very high by consumers in a shopping website.
- Now Foods Vitamin A, 25000 IU from Fish liver oil. One of most essential vitamins for acne, vitamin A is not only good for your vision; it also has lots of functions in the body like maintaining healthy glowing skin. This product will supply your body with a good amount of vitamin A which can effectively help in minimizing redness and inflammation. This product is also getting very high reviews and recommendation from an online shopping site.
- Nature’s Way Vitex (Chaste Tree), 400 mg. This natural food supplement is formulated for women. Acne in women can be caused by hormonal imbalances. This product will help women promote healthy and balanced hormones especially during menstruation. Vitex is formulated to aid in correcting hormonal imbalances. This product is naturally made from chaste tree berry which is known to effectively restore normal estrogen-to-progesterone balance. (Read more Hormonal Acne)
Our natural body needs natural nourishment. Sometimes, when medications such as antibiotics and other medical treatment do not work, it is better to go back to the basics and fundamentals. These vitamins for acne and all other types of natural supplements are indeed beneficial not only to acne but to the whole body itself. There is nothing wrong with finding the best solution to your acne problem. However, for some people, especially pregnant women and those who have some other special conditions, you might want to consult your doctors first before trying any of these vitamins for acne, as it may also bring some not-so-good effects to your body. Your doctor, when it comes your health and overall wellness, still remains the best authority.