The Ultimate Anti-Acne Diet Guide for Clearer, Healthier Skin

The Ultimate Anti-Acne diet plan.

The number of people with severe acne is increasing. Almost half of the adults suffer from various skin conditions, and almost all adolescents struggle to get clearer skin. Skin acne can damage your self-esteem.

Hormonal malfunction causes acne. You will see bumps on the skin surface of most older children or individuals who are going through puberty. Anyone can have acne-prone skin regardless of genes or color complexion. Sometimes, more acne starts to appear when skin acne starts to fade.

Although skin acne, in its normal occurrence, is not harmful in its extreme form, it can be painful. According to various studies, skin acne is also among the contributing factors to low self-confidence, anxiety, and depression.

Causes of AcneA girl pointing acne on her face

The human skin has a lot of holes in its surface, which are connected to the sebaceous glands or oil glands beneath the skin. In general terms, we refer to these holes as pores. Through these skin openings or pores, the oil glands send sebum up to the skin, which helps the skin get rid of dead skin cells.

If the skin pores are clogged with dead skin or due to the production of excess oil or any bacterial contamination, acne starts appearing. Teenagers going through puberty are most likely to develop acne because their sebaceous glands produce more oil due to hormonal changes.

Also, we cannot ignore the environmental factors which are majorly contributing to the appearance of skin acne, such as pollution. Smoking and stress are also some of the common causes of skin acne.

In mild acne cases, you will see one or two pimples or acne spots on the skin, but in its extreme form, cystic acne may be formulated on the skin, which produces inflamed and painful cysts and is more common in males as compared to females.

Is Skin Acne Related to Diet?Bad food and a girl with acne on her face

Another important cause behind skin acne revolves around the intake of an unhealthy diet rich in carbs and fats. A poor diet is not only related to weight gain and obesity but the oil and fat-enriched food also cause skin acne to appear widely on the skin. A diet with a high glycemic index converts the consumed food into sugar more rapidly, eventually leading to increased blood sugar levels and insulin levels. The insulin level, when fluctuating, leads to hormonal changes, which are directly related to skin acne development.

Researches suggest that consuming skimmed milk is also a significant cause of skin acne. Similarly, consuming junk food more often also leads to hormonal disturbance. Since junk food is rich in simple carbs and high sugar, these are easy to break down into the body. If you consume high sugar content and more carbs for two to three days and you wake up with a skin blemish the next morning, the reason is quite clear.

In short, the intake of high-sugar or processed food brings with it a high chance of skin breakouts. It wouldn’t be wrong to conclude that improving your diet is the most effective and safest way to eliminate skin acne or reduce its chances of occurrence.

Want to know a clear skin diet plan that does wonders for the skin? Keep reading!

30-Day Clear Skin DietGirl with clear skin and good diet plan

Below we have listed the food which is good for the skin and visibly reduces the acne or skin irritation caused by it. You don’t necessarily have to eat according to this diet plan. However, you can take start from a certain point for healthy-looking skin. Before consuming these anti-acne foods, you should analyze if a certain food intake leads to causing acne on your skin, as every skin type has different needs.

Now, let’s find out the diet you should take for acne-clear skin.

Complex Carbohydrates

Try swapping the intake of simple carbs with complex carbohydrates, as these have a lower glycemic index. Think of food such as brown rice, quinoa, oats, whole wheat pasta, legumes, and whole grains.


Fiber is an important ingredient to help reduce gut inflammation and keep your stomach fuller for longer hours. For healthier-looking skin, try intaking fiber-enriched food such as almonds, berries, broccoli, flax and chia seeds, and lentils, as they help in soothing skin and reducing skin acne and inflammation.

Vitamin EVitamin E

When the skin suffers from Vitamin E deficiency, it results in skin inflammation and acne. Consuming Vitamin E-enriched food or supplements is vital to combat the effects of free radicals on the skin and is highly beneficial in reducing skin damage. Foods with a high amount of Vitamin E include almonds, almond milk, hazelnuts, and sunflower seeds.


Studies have suggested that adding zinc to a diet helps make skin look healthier and prevents skin acne. Pumpkin seeds, cashew nuts, turkey, beef, quinoa, and oysters are great resources for zinc intake.

Omega 3

Omega 3 fatty acids are highly beneficial for the skin as it has anti-inflammatory effects and helps in skin’s oil production. It minimizes the aging signs and reduces the occurrence of breakouts.

Important Components of a Clear Skin Diet Plana girl eating broccoli

Achieving acne-free skin is everyone’s dream, but you can never fight the acne or stop it entirely from occurring. However, with the help of a healthy diet plan, you can attain clear skin or at least reduce acne marks. Sticking to the healthy skin diet plan is important as the results appear after following the plan for 2 to 3 weeks.

We have suggested the following options to include in your breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Try adding a maximum of these components into your meal to achieve the maximum benefits.

For Breakfast

Breakfast is the first meal of the day, and if you plan to achieve acne-free skin, you should follow a strict plan that also triggers high energy levels. Consider adding food items to your breakfast routines, such as flax seeds, walnuts, dry oats, berries, almond milk, egg whites, pumpkin puree, yogurt, cinnamon, banana, and olive oil.

For Lunch

Your lunch plan should be high in energy while also ensuring that you have included all those essential ingredients for fighting acne. You may include Avocado, spinach, lettuce, carrot, beetroot, one small can of tuna, salmon fillet, chopped parsley, bell peppers, spring onions, tomato & cucumber salad, zucchini, or chicken breast.

For Dinner

Baked Salmon, Asparagus, brown rice, lime water, celery, chickpeas, lentils soup, riced cauliflower, potatoes, butternut squash, and sriracha are considered great to add to your dinner for healthy, acne-free skin.

Which Foods Cause Acne?Foods that can Cause Acne

Until now, you’d be aware that food with a high glycemic index tends to raise blood sugar levels related to the development of acne. Processed food, refined carbs, and high sugar-content-containing food are related to increasing blood insulin levels. Once the level rises beyond the limit, it triggers the sebaceous glands to produce more oil which results in clogging pores.

To get the acne free skin, your diet plan should not include the following items, or you should be reducing the intaking of these items as much as you can:

  • White bread
  • White potatoes
  • Sugar and white flour
  • Bagels
  • Pretzels and crackers
  • Puffed grains
  • Cookies
  • Prepackaged food

Are Chocolate and Milk Related to Acne?a piece of chocolate in front of acne face girl

Not much evidence supports the idea that consuming chocolate leads to skin acne, but chocolate contains refined sugar, meaning it has a high glycemic index. Since every skin type is different, only some people develop acne after eating chocolate.

While we know that full-fat milk is healthier in so many ways, processing it into skimmed milk is associated with acne development. It is suggested to avoid the use of skimmed milk and skimmed milk products as these can worsen acne. Similarly, cow’s milk is associated with skin and gut inflammation and promotes testosterone in the body, leading to more sebum production and, hence, more acne. However, you may also choose almond milk as an alternative to dairy milk.

The Bottom Line

We cannot talk about acne without talking about its main causes. Since our diet determines our overall health, achieving healthy skin is only possible with a healthy diet. Whatever we eat can be shown through the health of our skin, so it is very important to cure acne skin through improving the diet. Always consume a balanced diet with the right proportion of food, veggies, nuts, beans, and whole grains. Stay hydrated, as dehydration produces the worst effects on the skin and reduces its natural moisture. Always consult your doctor before making any dietary changes to avoid harming your health.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How many types of acne are there?

Whiteheads, blackheads, papules, and pustules are common types of skin acne.

What is the difference between a whitehead and a blackhead?

A whitehead is a closed, clogged pore that turns into a pimple, while a blackhead is a clogged pore that is not closed and appears as a dark spot on the skin. 

Which supplements are essential to achieve acne-free skin?

Vitamins A, C, D, E, and K are highly beneficial in achieving clear skin. Zinc, collagen, and selenium supplements are also recommended to boost skin health and reduce acne.

How is green tea beneficial in reducing skin acne?

The antioxidants included in green tea are beneficial in reducing gut inflammation and sebum production, which is helpful in reducing acne formation on the skin.

How is turmeric beneficial in fighting skin acne?

Turmeric has exceptional healing properties. Applying it on the skin in the form of a mixture gives a healthy glow to the skin. Similarly, consuming turmeric supplements or adding it to food seasoning brings many benefits to the skin, such as reducing acne spots.

Is milk production related to skin acne?

Various studies have suggested that consuming cow’s milk can lead to severe breakouts. Milk leads to increased insulin levels hence, more sebum production and more acne. Also, milk consumption is linked to slowing down the cellular turnover of the skin cells, which results in the clogging of pores.

What can be used as an alternative to dairy milk for acne-clear skin?

For acne-clear skin, it is recommended to use almost milk as an alternative to dairy milk.

Why is prepacked food not good for the skin?

The prepackaged food contains cheap oils, high sugar concentration, simple carbs, and animal fat, which cause hormonal fluctuation in the body and makes skin look rough, patchy, and damaged.

How much water is recommended to drink to achieve healthy skin?

If you want to obtain healthy, acne-free skin, you should take 7 to 8 glasses of water daily.

Which foods cause acne?

White rice, sugar, fries, doughnuts, pastries, white potatoes, and cornflakes are related to causing skin acne.

What is the difference between acne and pimple?

Simply put, acne is a disease, and pimple is one of its symptoms.  People who have acne-prone skin develop pimples on their skin surfaces. However, every person who develops pimples doesn’t necessarily have acne-prone skin.

How to achieve clear skin?

Wash your face with a good facewash, remove your makeup completely before going to bed, use sunscreen with SPF 30 or above, use a good moisturizer, apply ice packs on the skin, cleanse your face with a mild cleanser, exfoliate your skin, and get a good sleep.

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