Can Vitamins Really Help Treat Acne?

By: vitalgirl
The more successful natural acne treatments primarily work by reducing the inflammation associated with breakouts. Yet vitamins and minerals don't work via this mechanism. Does this mean they aren't really effective in healing pimples, pustules, and zits?

Excess vitamins, with the exception of the fat soluble vitamins (A, D and E), are eliminated from the body. The fat soluble vitamins are stored in the body, and can have serious side effects, particularly vitamin A. The water soluble vitamins can also cause unpleasant and sometimes dangerous side effects, which is a problem with one popular vitamin related treatment for acne, the B5 acne program. However, vitamins and minerals are needed for the health of the skin, our hormonal balance, and a strong immune system. These things all have an impact on acne, so it's important to make sure you're at least getting the recommended daily allowance of vitamins.

Vitamin A, and the B vitamins, all have important roles in the health of the skin. Vitamin A strengthens the skin, and a deficiency can lead to acne. However, it is important to note that an excess of this vitamin can also create pimples. Too much vitamin A can be dangerous, especially for pregnant women, who should not take more than 10,000 IU a day. Others can take up to 25,000 IU daily, and this is indeed recommended for treating acne.

Other side effects of vitamin A overdose include nausea, itchiness, irritability, vomiting, headaches, menstrual problems, and dizziness. Long term vitamin A overdose can lead to liver damage, pain in the muscles and bone, and headaches. Some people can have symptoms at a lower dose than 15,000 to 25,000 IU, so this should be monitored if you're taking these levels of vitamin A.

The B vitamins are all important for healthy skin tone, though several are recommended for acne sufferers. These are vitamin B3 (100 mg three times a day), vitamin B6 (50 mg three times a day), and vitamin B5 (50 mg three times a day). If you are taking any B vitamins separately, it's recommended that you take a B complex, as this group work together and taking some without the others can result in a deficiency of some B vitamins. The B vitamins also help with the effects of stress, which can be important for acne sufferers.

Vitamin E is excellent for speeding up the healing process, due to its antioxidant capacity. It also helps with the absorption of vitamin A. The suggested amount is 400 IU daily.

Vitamin C with bioflavanoids is the only vitamin that has an anti-inflammatory effect. It also helps with skin healing, and gives the immune system a boost. Try 3000 to 5000 mg spread throughout the day.
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