These Nutrient Deficiencies Can Worsen Hormonal Acne

The following list explains the importance of various nutrients for your overall health as well as their association with hormonal acne. Read on to get an overview, nutritional sources and supplementation suggestions. 


How it Helps: This trace mineral helps to reduce inflammation and boost immune function which can help prevent the likelihood of acne from bacteria and decrease the redness/irritation associated with it. Zinc is also key for adequate hormone production and helps block 5a-DHT production.

Nutritional Sources: Oysters, animal proteins, pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, lentils/beans.

To Supplement: Take 15-30mg per day.


How it Helps: This mineral helps regulate inflammation, and it supports the nervous system, thyroid and sex hormones. It also helps to keep blood sugar stable.

Nutritional Sources: Dark leafy greens (spinach, chard, kale, beet greens), dark chocolate, seeds (sesame, pumpkin, sunflower), black beans.

To Supplement: Take 200-800 mg/day. 


How it Helps: Vitamin E is a major antioxidant in the skin. It’s transported to the skin via oil. Studies have shown vitamin E flows more to areas of the skin that produce more oil (like the cheeks).

Nutritional Sources: Sunflower seeds, almonds, spinach, swiss chard, avocado, turnip greens, beet greens, asparagus, tocos powder.

To Supplement: Take 400-600 IU/day of mixed tocopherols (not just alpha). 


How it Helps: The role of vitamin C in skin health has been under discussion since the 1930s as the remedy for scurvy. This antioxidant protects the skin from oxidative stress. Some research suggests the bioavailability of vitamin C in the skin is inadequate when it is administered orally. The use of topical vitamin C is therefore preferred in some practices of dermatology.

Nutritional Sources: Camu Camu, papaya, bell peppers, broccoli, brussel sprouts, strawberries, pineapple, oranges, kiwi, cantaloupe, cauliflower.

To Supplement:

  • Oral vitamin C: 750 - 1000 mg per day (based on bowel tolerance).
  • Topical Brand: Eva Naturals Topical Vitamin C.

To read more posts about all-things acne, check out our dedicated section to the topic on our blog, Period Matters

This is an excerpt from a post written by functional medicine dietitian nutritionist, Robyn Johnson, MS, RDN, LD, CLT.
Content curated and edited by Nayla Al-Mamlouk.

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