How does vitamin A and acne mix together? Does it actually help or is it just another vitamin I’m supposed to add to my other vitamins for acne? I definitely had those questions and here’s what I found.
Know Which Vitamin A Is Best For Acne:
Unfortunately, it isn’t as easy as just finding the words “vitamin A for acne” on a pill bottle and taking that. Vitamin A has many forms and the two main categories for vitamin A are: Retinoids and Carotenoids. Now the carotenoids are the vitamins most people associate with carrots and sweet potatoes. Carotenoids are very helpful in their own right like carrying vital antioxidants, but they do not help the facial acne. Retinoids are the type of vitamin A we will be discussing in this article. Retinoids are the more “animal” form of vitamin A commonly found in liver, butter, eggs, cod liver oil, etc. and has many positive aspects for clear skin.
Vitamin A and Acne Treatment:
When you think of vitamin A, it probably doesn’t jump out as an acne treatment. However, you might be surprised that acne and vitamin A go way back in their connection. Dermatologists have for years prescribed vitamin A as a common acne treatment. Here’s why vitamin A is a well known acne treatment.
- it helps the cells shed the dead skin more effectively to reveal the healthy skin
- it assists in removing the junk that can get trapped in pores
- natural antioxidants help reduce nasty inflammation
- assist in reducing oil production
How Much Vitamin A Is Good?
The recommended daily minimum vitamin A intake is 5000 IU (International Units) which is approximately 1500 mg. However, most experts would agree you can go as high as 10,000 IU if you have a healthy intake of vitamin D3 and vitamin K2. To effectively handle your acne, see if you are actually achieving the 5000 IU mark with your diet. If you can see you already are achieving that minimum, incrementally increase the vitamin A intake by 1000 IU for a month and check results. Repeat this process but do not eclipse the 10,000 IU intake. If you reach the 10,000 IU mark and are still not seeing the results you desire, talk to a physician to see if you are healthy and in good condition to increase the amount.
How Do You Get More Vitamin A:
First, you should always try the natural methods of vitamin A intake. Foods like liver (beef, goat, lamb, chicken, pork), pastured eggs, sweet potatoes, and pumpkin all have good amounts of vitamin A. Those foods are written in order of highest concentration of vitamin A to least concentration. The good news is your own liver can store vitamin A and release it into the body upon necessity. You can shoot for ¼ – ½ a pound of liver once a week or a few eggs every few days. Sweet potatoes and pumpkin needs to be incorporated more often since their concentration of vitamin A is lower.
If none of those options seem appealing, you can go with taking a cod liver oil supplement. This particular brand of cod liver oil is certified fresh and only requires taking 1 pill whereas most supplements require 3-5 pills.
Lastly, consult your physician if you still feel you need a better source of vitamin A.
Words of Caution for Vitamin A:
Vitamin A does carry with it some risk if you ingest too much vitamin A. Vitamin A toxicity is not all too common but does have serious side effects if it is reached. Some of those are potential birth defects and miscarriages in women, liver problems, bone mineral loss, coma and even death. This can occur when you consistently intake more than 10,000 IU and do not have good dietary balance of the vitamin D3 and K2.
Vitamin A and Other Helpful Vitamins:
Other vitamins have proven effective when combined with vitamin A. Using vitamin A and zinc for acne is a very common and powerful treatment for acne. Implementing zinc for acne in your regimen already has powerful effects, and vitamin A only enhances those effects. You can even look into vitamin B5 acne when combined with vitamin A.