June 10, 2022

How Vitamin D Can Help Manage Acne

How Vitamin D Can Help Manage Acne
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Research is still underway to establish whether vitamin D can help acne. Sources of this fat-soluble vitamin are fish, egg, fortified dairy, and grains. Another way of obtaining this vitamin is through sunlight, which causes the body to make vitamin D from cholesterol.

Acne is a skin disorder characterized by clogged pores, leading to bumpy blackheads or red skin. Several factors can cause acne, including an excess of androgens (a group of sex hormones), sebum, bacteria, or fungus. Vitamin D deficiency may also play a role in developing acne vulgaris.

Can Low Vitamin D Cause Acne?

A 2018 study established that the magnitude of vitamin D deficiency is prevalent amongst all age groups and high-risk groups, addressing an urgency for a resolution.

Though not officiated as a risk factor for acne, further research is underway, especially since the evidence shows the effect of vitamin D on immunity. It could be a reason why vitamin D might have an impact on the health of the skin as well. 

Individuals suffering from a vitamin D deficiency and nodulocystic acne, a severe type of acne affecting the face and upper body, appeared to have more severity in symptoms than those without, according to a 2014 research.

Acne patients saw improved symptoms upon supplementation of vitamin D.

How Vitamin D May Benefit Acne

Due to its antibacterial properties, vitamin D may prevent the growth of unwanted microbes that commonly cause acne. Vitamin D is also available as topical versions for this purpose. Further research is required to determine the scientific reason behind it.

Acne occurs due to inflammation and may subside with vitamin D, which is anti-inflammatory. Vitamin D supplementation can also treat recurring acne.

How To Utilize Vitamin D For Acne

The medical fraternity agrees that solely depending upon sunlight for one’s vitamin D storage may not suffice. Therefore, a diet rich in vitamin D or taking vitamin D supplementation is the favored method of increasing one’s vitamin D levels. 

One must take care so that the vitamin D dosage for a day does not surpass the recommended 100 micrograms. Vitamin D tends to accumulate when in excess, so you have to consume it with a meal.

Research suggests that topical applications of vitamin D can effectively increase vitamin D levels compared to oral supplements. However, more evidence is required. 

Risks and Adverse Effects

The National Institute of Health recommends no more than 100 mcg of vitamin D per day for those who are not lactating or pregnant.

Too much vitamin D intake can lead to vitamin D toxicity. Hypercalcemia, the excess accumulation of calcium, is the most common side effect of vitamin D toxicity. It can lead to nausea, vomiting, irregular heart rates, calcification of tissues, kidney stones, and further systemic issues in the long run.

Corticosteroids can decrease the levels of vitamin D.


If your acne refuses to budge even after multiple treatments, it may be due to a  vitamin D deficiency. Consult a doctor or dermatologist who might recommend regular biochemical tests to determine whether your acne is from a vitamin D deficiency. According to their recommendation, you might have to take supplements for vitamin D.

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