Iodine & Inflamed Acne

In case you don't have enough to worry about, some of your favorite foods may exacerbate your acne! A stealthy culprit may be lurking in your food and medications...iodides. Although most experts agree that chocolate and greasy food do not cause acne, we do know that excessive, long-term ingestion of iodide (also know as iodine) whether in drugs or in food, can induce inflamed acne. 

Once iodide enters the body and mixes into the bloodstream, acne lesions start appearing with regularity. If there is iodide present in the blood, the body excretes the excess iodide through the oil glands of the skin. As the iodide is excreted, it irritates the pores and causes acne flare-ups. If you are acne-prone, your pores are especially sensitive to iodide.

It is interesting to note that iodide is showing up in very unexpected foods, like bread (wheat products), meat and dairy products. Farmers feed their livestock nutrients with iodine in them and it is passed on to you, the consumer. Vitamins, mineral pills, and food supplements are some of the biggest offending sources of iodides. Vitamin and mineral companies also love to include Kelp and seaweed in their vitamins and minerals and for the acne prone this is the kiss of ZITS! Be sure to read the labels before purchasing and shop for a brand that does not contain high levels of iodides. They will be listed as potassium iodide.

Foods to avoid:

  • Iodized salt
  • Seasoned salt
  • Sun evaporated salt
  • Seaweed
  • Kelp
  • Cod
  • Squid
  • Crab
  • Beef liver
  • Turkey
  • Asparagus
  • Broccoli
  • Tortilla Chips with salt
  • Potato chips with salt
  • Power bars
  • Sport drinks
  • Fast foods
  • Dairy products (cows lick iodized salt licks)
  • Kelp tablets (some people take these for thyroid support)
  • Multi Vitamins (check the label, many multi vitamins contain iodine)
  • When purchasing salt, choose non iodized!