Eating foods high in zinc is good for the skin & acne.

Vitamin A and zinc for acne problems and a healthy skin.
Zinc in skincare.

Zinc is good for the skin. Certainly, you should consume zinc from food, not supplements.

Certainly, zinc is a vital trace mineral for many functions of the human body. Zinc is important to:

  • immunity,
  • wound healing,
  • tasting,
  • smelling,
  • testosterone synthesis,
  • reproduction,
  • and in many other functions, as it is required for the activity of more than 100 enzymes.

Are zinc supplements good for teenagers with acne?

Zinc is important for acne treatment. Hence, we should try to consume at least the recommended daily intake of 11 mg.

If you can’t consume this amount from food, maybe you should consider taking zinc supplements. Daily doses up to 40 mg are considered pretty safe!

Each population group has different zinc needs. Men have different zinc needs than women. Similarly, teenagers from adults. Teenagers of both sexes have high demands on zinc. They should consume at least 8 mg of zinc daily. Boys should consume at least 11 mg of zinc daily and girls 9 mg.

More about the health benefits of zinc, and its importance to the immune system here.

Why is zinc vital for acne & skin care?

Zinc is important for:

  • hormone activation,
  • tissue regeneration,
  • wound healing, and
  • retinol-binding protein formation.

The retinol-binding protein is a transport protein. Its level in plasma reflects the amount of vitamin A available to tissues.

Zinc is a key factor for its formation.

According to a study, patients with severe acne had lower levels of this retinol-binding protein. Also, boys had significantly lowered levels of zinc.

For this reason, scientists believe that zinc is good for acne and overall skin care (1).

Why vitamin A and zinc are good for acne & the skin?

As zinc deficiency is often associated with low vitamin A (retinol) concentrations, maybe it is a good idea to increase:

Avoid vitamin A supplementation. High dosages of vitamin A for months may be toxic for the body. Vitamin A toxicity can cause decreased life quality. Food should be the No1 option.

Always consult your health care provider. Especially, if you consume foods high in vitamin A, combined with vitamin A supplements.

In conclusion, zinc deficiency lowers levels of retinol-binding protein. Decreased levels of retinol-binding protein cause decrease serum retinol levels. Therefore, retinol (vitamin A) can reduce skin sebum production.

What foods are good for acne & a lightening skin?

So, what foods are rich in zinc? Common plant-based foods rich in zinc are whole-grains, seeds, nuts, and legumes. Moreover, sesame, hemp, pumpkin, and sunflower seeds are particularly rich in zinc. Eat them regularly.

Also, people with acne should consume plant-based foods rich in vitamin A. Plants that are rich in beta-carotene (known as provitamin A) are the colorful ones. Carotenoids (beta-carotene is a carotenoid) are the yellow, orange, and red organic pigments on plants.

The Most known foods rich in beta-carotene are peppers, carrots, squash, turnip greens, peas, spinach, collard greens, sweet potatoes, dill weed, cress, beet greens, kale, cabbage, amaranth leaves, broccoli, arugula, and brussels sprouts.

Last, but not least, if you have acne, better consume foods rich in antioxidants. A whole food plant-based diet provides abundant sources of antioxidants, as they are mainly found in spices, herbs, vegetables, and fruits. The richest food supplement in antioxidants is amla powder. By far, the best choice.

Foods that are bad for acne

Eating healthy is only the first step against acne scars. Furthermore, you should avoid certain foods…

Why you should avoid cow’s milk in acne?

Firstly, you should consider avoiding cow’s milk. Milk can be a significant problem for acne. It stimulates sebum production, through IGF-1 hormone in the body. Researchers have found a relationship between milk and acne. Either whole milk, or skim milk are bad for acne (3).

Other foods to avoid in acne

Moreover, it’s a good idea to avoid fatty, salty or sugary foods.

For instance, you better avoid excess consumption of fried foods. Especially if they aren’t homemade. They increase inflammation in sebaceous glands.

So, fried potatoes may be a bad idea.

Why don’t you try air fried sweet potatoes as an alternative? They are both tasty and healthy. Additionally, regular potatoes are good for you. Just use an air fryer, or eat them baked or mashed.


  1. NCBI: – Serum zinc and retinol-binding protein in acne
  2. PubMed: Retinol binding protein expression is induced in HepG2 cells by zinc deficiency.
  3. NCBI: Dairy intake and acne development: A meta-analysis of observational studies.