Vitamins and minerals are essential for the normal functioning of cells, tissues, organs and bodily systems, and without an adequate dietary intake, a deficiency can occur. A deficiency in certain vitamins can then result in skin conditions like acne and acne-like dermatitis. Thankfully, supplying the body with all the nutrients it needs for healthy skin isn’t difficult to do.
Some of the properties of vitamins which make them useful in treating acne are their antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, anti-comedogenic, antibacterial and exfoliating properties. This means that a good intake of these vitamins for skin may help combat some of the root causes of your acne.
One of the most important vitamins for skin is vitamin A. Vitamin A is essential for the maintenance and repair of skin, hormonal balance, as well as the normal shedding of dead skin cells that can build up in the pore and cause acne. Vitamin A also acts as an anti-inflammatory to calm red and irritated breakouts. A deficiency can cause skin problems like dry, rough and flaky skin, chronic infections, and even .
Thankfully, most fruits and vegetables are loaded with vitamin A – like carrots and sweet potato! Supplementation is not recommended.
vitamin b complex
Vitamin B5 (pantothenic acid) is important for building new cells and fighting infection. It has been as one of the root causes of acne, and although this is not likely true, vitamin B5 may prevent and . Although the exact mechanism of vitamin B5 in acne treatments are not known, many people swear by Vitamin B5 for clearing their skin.
Although B6 is not as well-researched as other vitamins for skin, some have linked a B6 deficiency to acne breakouts, and others have linked their remission to supplementation.
Although Vitamin B12 has no direct effect on acne, it is involved in cellular metabolism, fatty acid synthesis, and DNA production, and may have a regulatory role in the immune system and endocrine system. It’s possible that it may help promote hormonal balance and reduce inflammation that could cause acne.
While supplementation is generally considered safe, fortified foods are a safer option.
Vitamin C is found in the epidermis (the outer layer of skin), as well as in the inner dermal layer. Vitamin C contains well-studied antioxidant properties that can decrease damage and as well as promote collagen production for healthy repair. Vitamin C works by protecting the skin’s barrier and reducing the risk of damage caused to the skin by free radicals and can even lighten acne scars.
While deficiency is rare, as foods rich in vitamin C are easily made up in a whole foods diet, supplementation is also considered safe.
Vitamin D plays a large role in the biology of the skin, and like other vitamins for skin, it is often found . It is a hormone that not only affects tissues but has also been shown to affect the overall appearance and health of the skin. It prevents infection and can also suppress sebum production and the enlargement of sebaceous glands. Vitamin D is also , antimicrobial, and antioxidative.
Most people can acquire enough vitamin D through safe sun exposure, although supplementation is often needed for those in northern areas.
Not only is vitamin E an powerhouse, but it also helps to increase moisture in the skin, improve wound healing and skin texture, and reduce . Vitamin E is delivered through the sebaceous gland, so our dietary intake is a direct reflection of the vitamin E status of our skin (although it can take about a week to with supplementation). A deficiency of vitamin E in the skin can increase inflammation, redness, acne, and other skin problems.
Increasing your magnesium intake may have an indirect but measurable effect on your acne if it is caused by stress.
Selenium is important for preserving levels of other antioxidants that are beneficial for the skin. It also helps to prevent inflammation caused by acne.
One of the most important vitamins for skin, zinc is a well-studied, skin-friendly mineral that acts as an antioxidant and anti-inflammatory. Zinc also helps to break down substance P, a chemical that causes sebum production when the body is stressed.
While 30mg doses may be safe, your body needs relatively little zinc and so increasing dietary intake remains the safest option.
essential fatty acids
If your skin is prone to dryness, inflammation, and breakouts, you may be lacking essential fatty acids, which are crucial to the maintenance of the skin's . Without an adequate intake, the skin produces a more that can result in acne.
The solution may be a balance of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. Most people get plenty of omega-6s while their omega-3 intake is lacking. Supplementation is considered safe.
If you want healthy skin, you need to give your skin what it needs - and that means eating the right vitamins for skin. Our bodies use the nutrients that we supply it with (and those we synthesize) to create a healthy, strong barrier between our insides and the outside world - our biggest organ, the skin.
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