The Best Foods That Clear Acne

When it comes to clearing acne, our skin needs all the help it can get. One of the best ways of helping it is through the food we eat.  Of course there are still people who say that diet and acne are not connected. My personal favorite (which annoys me of course ) is “There are no scientific studies that prove that acne and diet are connected”. If you’re out of your teens and still struggling with acne, let me tell you the quickest way to clear and acne free skin is through diet. Even if you do not have acne, adding the below foods to your diet can make your skin glow and look so much better. Do try it out and let me know. I can guarantee you will not be disappointed.

Now, I’m  not telling you to overhaul your diet and start eating a diet completely different to what you can get around you. Just a few changes and additions and you’re good to go. Trying to overhaul your diet completely is a battle that is lost from the beginning. If you eat rice, like I do, on a daily basis and you ask me to quit rice, I know instinctively that I cannot do it. I might say I can, but I am human and I love food, plus I was brought up eating rice.

So here are the best foods you can add to your diet so that your acne starts healing. I’ll include recipes and how you can include it in your diet.

1. Green Leafy Vegetables

These are a powerhouse as they contains loads of antioxidants that are beneficial for your skin. Antioxidants speed up your skins repair system and they prevent further damage.  This makes them a great addition to your diet. You can add baby spinach leaves to your salad. You can make a green smoothie with mixed greens. Leafy greens include spinach, fenugreek leaves, amaranth leaves, kale, collard greens, beet greens or any green leafy vegetable you get local to you.

Here is a basic recipe you can make using spinach, fenugreek leaves or any leafy green. Or even a mix of them.

  • 1 Onion (chopped fine)
  • 1/2 tomato (chopped fine)
  • 4-5 handfuls of greens – spinach or any of your choice (washed well and chopped)
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil ( any vegetable oil will do also)
  • 1 teaspoon grated coconut (optional)
  • salt to taste

Add all the above ingredients to a except salt and coconut to a vessel. Put this vessel on the stove and set the heat to low. Put the lid on and let it cook for 4-5 minutes. Then open the lid. The leaves would have wilted. If not, put the lid back on again and cook on low heat for 2-3 minutes more. Open the lid and add salt to taste and coconut if required. Coconut is needed mostly if you are Indian and want to eat it with rice and dal (lentils). Skip the coconut to serve with steak or grilled chicken.

2. Chia Seeds

foods that clear acne

These seeds are packed with omega-3 fatty acids and they are also high in antioxidants. They help fight inflammation in your body and also help with dry skin.


Below is a breakfast recipe using chia seeds.

  • 1 cup almond milk, coconut or any milk of your choice
  • 2 tablespoons chia seeds

Soak the chia seeds in the milk and leave it overnight covered in the refrigerator. Next morning the chia seeds would have absorbed the milk. Add toppings like fresh fruits, cocoa powder and sweeten with honey or maple syrup for an amazing kick start to your day.

3. Probiotics

To have good skin your body should be healthy. This means good digestive health as well. Skin prone to acne has shown to improve with a daily dose of probiotics. Source

Probiotics are in yoghurt, home made pickles, fermented foods like idly dosa, home made curd, sauerkraut, kimchi, kombucha and buttermilk.

4. Berries

foods that clear acne

The deep color of berries is due to an antioxidant which protects the damage to your skin by free radicals. Add a handful of any locally available berries to your daily diet.


Here’s how you can include chia seeds and berries into a breakfast smoothie.

foods that clear acne

  • 1 cup mixed berries
  • 1 banana
  • 3/4 to 1  cup milk, yoghurt, almond or soy milk
  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds

Blend all in a blender and enjoy.

5. Green Tea

foods that clear acne

Green tea contains powerful antioxidants. It is also good for regulating your insulin levels which in turn reduces the sebum or oil your skin makes, which in turns leads to less acne. All these factors make green tea an excellent agent to fight inflammation in your skin. Now green tea is not exactly everyone’s cup of tea! To make it more palatable add freshly squeezed orange juice or lemon juice to it. Have it cold if you don’t like it hot. Just make the tea and let it cool. Or add ice cubes to the hot tea to cool it.

To calm your face you can dab your face gently with the used green tea bag.

6. Citrus Fruits

foods that clear acneCitrus fruits contain loads of Vitamin C which is great for your skin. I wrote an article here about how Vitamin C helps acne. Adding these to your daily diet will help reduce the life cycle of your acne and also keep it at day. Vitamin C calms your immune system which in turn prevent your body from harming your skin. Vitamin C also helps reduce the redness on your skin due to acne.

7. Avocados

foods that clear acneMany years back I used to watch Nigella Lawson’s cooking shows. She once described avocado as a moisturizer that you can eat. She said it moisturizes your skin from within. That’s a pretty good description for the avocado. Avocados are full of healthy fats that are fantastic for your skin. Add them to your salads, on toast or enjoy them just on their own.

Here’s a salad you can make with avocados

foods that clear acne

  • 1/2 Avocado
  • 1 small cucumber
  • 1/2 each of green and red peppers
  • 1 cup kidney or any beans (cooked and drained)
  • 1/2 tomato
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • juice of one lemon

Mix all the veggies in a bowl. All the olive oil and lemon juice to a small bowl and add salt and pepper to it. Mix it well. Add to the veggies. You can get creative and add apples, oranges, spinach and lettuce to the salad as well.  This is a very versatile recipe. It can be modified a lot.

8. Ginger

foods that clear acneI used to always notice that my skin looked much better when I had a cold. It always confused me until I realized I drank ginger tea when I had a cold. Along with a lot of turmeric in lot water. Ginger has antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties. Whatever it does to help your cold and sniffles away, it does similar things to help your acne heal as well.

Ginger can be added to stir fries, added to tea or it can be added to your green smoothie. I used to grind half a kilo of ginger and strain the mix using a sieve. The juice that comes out of it can be stored in a clean glass bottle for up to a month. This juice can be added to green smoothies.

9. Turmeric

foods that clear acneLike ginger, turmeric also has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. It works great added to your food and also applied topically to your skin. You can add turmeric to your scrambled eggs and also to your soup. A teaspoon of turmeric stirred into a pot of soup adds a very earthy flavour to it.

So here they are – some of the best foods to clear acne. Be creative and mix 2-3 of them up in one dish. Don’t be afraid to experiment. If you do experiment and it tastes good, mention it in the comments below. Below are just some examples.

  • Spinach, avocado and citrus fruits can be added to your salad.
  • A green smoothie can be made with spinach, mint, avocado, ginger juice, turmeric and green tea
  • The breakfast smoothie above has chia seeds and berries. Add yoghurt too.
  • Green tea can be had with citrus fruit juice ( lemon juice or orange juice )
  • Turmeric, ginger juice and lemon juice can be added to green tea
  • You can grind spinach and add it to plain yoghurt with salt and garlic powder. This can be used as a dip.


How To Quit Sugar to Get Your Best Skin Ever

I quit sugar in May 2012. I did this to try and clear my face of cystic acne which was really bad at that time. I had bumps on my forehead that did not heal for about 6 months. Even medical treatments could not fix them. When my acne cleared after quitting sugar, thrilled I continued to look around on the internet on why my acne cleared with this diet change.

The video below was shared with me by my husband.

Continue reading “How To Quit Sugar to Get Your Best Skin Ever”

Is Acne Genetic?

Most people who have fought with acne and continue to fight with it in adulthood eventually ask this question. Not that knowing the answer does much to help, but it does answer the question as to why you have acne. Where acne is concerned we do need answers as to why we in particular are affected. We need to know why we have acne while our friends don’t.

If your parents had acne, it is more than likely you will have acne. But before you despair let us think about it for a while. You will inherit your skin type from your parents. People with acne generally have overactive oil glands and skin that does not shed dead skin cells properly. You may inherit these conditions. Also you will probably eat the same or similar diet your parents had in their teens or adulthood. People generally tend to bring their childhood foods to the families they go on to have.

So is acne really genetic? Well, not really. While the tendency or likelihood to get acne is genetic, acne itself is not genetic. Just because either of your parents suffered does not mean you will suffer. But this also means that you can get acne regardless of whether anyone in your family had it.

The question if you have acne is, does it really matter if it’s genetic or not? There’s nothing you can do about genetics but there is a lot you can do about your diet, lifestyle and skincare. There are much worse genetic illnesses you can inherit. Some of these you can do nothing about. They may restrict the quality of your life and your ability to live life completely. If we’re being completely honest acne does none of these things. It may make you feel ugly or less confident but acne does not stop you from running or doing anything you feel like doing.

If you arrived here looking for the answer to this question, the best thing for you to do right now is to look forward and look for ways to cure your acne. It does not matter whether acne is genetic or not. There is nothing you can do if it is genetic or not. You are here now, with all the genes that make you unique. Focus on fixing your acne.

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Why Diet is the First Step to Clear Skin

For years I never knew that my acne could have anything to do with my diet. I had acne on my face but I did not feel sick or unhealthy. So I pretty much assumed it was just a skin problem. One that would heal when ointments or medicated creams were applied to it. However, none of these medicated creams and ointments could heal my acne and give me clear skin. Even if someone had told me at that time that diet and acne are connected, I would have had no idea where to start.

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4 Things I Wish My Dermatologist Had Told Me

The one thing I noticed when visiting dermatologists over the years for my acne was that they all had clear skin. Not just clear skin, but beautiful skin. Initially, this gave me hope as I thought that they would help me get that same clear and beautiful skin. However, as time went by it became pretty obvious that I was heading in exactly the opposite direction. The dry, red, cracked, itchy and bumpy skin was not exactly what I was looking for. They had some tricks up their sleeve which they were clearly not sharing with their patients.

Continue reading “4 Things I Wish My Dermatologist Had Told Me”