Natural Tips to Help Clear Up Adult Acne

Monday, July 23, 2012
Avoid the negative effects of prescription medications and strong cleansers by using natural remedies to clear up your skin.
Smiling woman with healthy skin.

About 50 percent of young women and 75 percent of young men develop acne. Although acne usually clears up around age 20, it is not uncommon for acne to progress into later years of life.

Contrary to popular belief, acne is not caused by poor hygiene. Rather, it is more closely related to hormones, increasing pore size and bacteria growing on the skin that can cause infection and subsequent inflammation. Washing your face twice per day with a mild soap is recommended to help clean pores. Washing your face more frequently and using strong cleansers that dry out the skin can actually worsen acne and cause irritation.

Prescription medications and antibiotics are available to treat acne, but they often have significant side effects. Fortunately, there are many things that can be done naturally to help clear up acne:

  • Eat a healthy, clean diet that is high in fruits, veggies and fiber, and low in fat and refined sugar. This is much more effective than cutting out individual “problem foods” such as chocolate.
  • Because hormones are processed in the liver, eating liver-supportive foods can help clear up acne. Include brassica vegetables, leafy greens and high-fiber foods such as such as pears, apples and oatmeal to add extra liver support.
  • Finally, it is important to drink water, as opposed to energy drinks, juice and soda.

There are a number of herbs, vitamins and minerals that can be helpful as well. Many of these, such as zinc, can be consumed in the diet. For more individualized information about which treatments and doses are appropriate for you, make an appointment at Bastyr Center for Natural Health at (206) 834-4100.

— Lela Altman, ND, LAc, naturopathic doctor, licensed acupuncturist and resident at Bastyr Center for Natural Health.

FALL 2017
Have questions about a program?
Request information »

More Health Tips

  • Purchasing food grown closer to your home will provide great health, economic and environmental benefits.

  • There are ways to help treat IBS using safe, natural products, and life-style intervention. 

  • There are many ways to monitor and change your individual risk of heart disease.

  • With the number of Type 2 Diabetes patients quickly rising, it's time to start preventing this disease by changing dietary and exercise habits. Dr. Jennifer Pilon sheds some light on how to prevent this disease naturally.
  • Get help decreasing your pesticide exposure without going over budget with the Environmental Working Group's lists of the "Dirty Dozen" and the "Clean Fifteen."
  • Adding delicious and healthful anti-inflammatory foods to your diet can help give your body a fighting chance if you suffer from seasonal allergies.