Are your vitamins causing breakouts?

Are your vitamins causing breakouts?

If you are experiencing random unexplainable breakouts, after eliminating potential food culprits (dairy, sugar, gluten, eggs), it may be time to consider your vitamins! I see this time and time again and hear my clients say, "Im not sure what's going on! I'm not eating any dairy or excessive sugar etc and my skin is freaking out!" My go to question is "are you taking any new supplements? Its often the Hair and skin vitamins that are causing reactions but not always!

While multivitamins are a wonderful way to add nutrients missing from your diet; certain ingredients in them can potentially contribute to skin breakouts and congestion when taken in higher doses or in individuals with highly sensitive bodies. Here are some common culprits:


1. Iodine: High levels of iodine can potentially lead to acne breakouts. Iodine can be found in various food sources (oysters, shell fish, seaweed), weight management supplements, and multivitamins.

2. Vitamin B6 and B12: While essential for health, excessive amounts of Vitamin B6 (pyridoxine) and B12 (cobalamin) have been linked to acne in some individuals. It's believed that these vitamins can stimulate oil production in the skin.

3. Biotin (Vitamin B7): Although biotin is often taken to support skin, hair, and nail health, there's some evidence suggesting that high doses may contribute to breakouts, possibly due to an imbalance it creates with other B vitamins.

4. Vitamin D: While vitamin D is essential for healthy skin, it is crucial to test your D levels before taking higher doses. Some people may experience breakouts when taking high doses of Vitamin D. This can be due to the body's regulation of this fat-soluble vitamin and its effect on hormone levels.

5. Excessive Dosages: Taking higher than recommended doses of vitamins and minerals can lead to imbalances and might affect the skin negatively. Always adhere to the recommended daily allowances unless advised otherwise by a healthcare professional.

6. Fillers and Additives: Some multivitamins contain fillers, artificial colors, and preservatives that could potentially cause skin reactions or clog pores in sensitive individuals.

7. Zinc: While zinc is often beneficial for the skin in appropriate doses, very high doses can lead to toxicity and might potentially cause skin and other health issues.

8. Magnesium Stearate: This is a common ingredient used as a flow agent in supplements and, like other fillers, might adversely affect sensitive skin.

9. Whey in protein powders and protein or energy bars is often the culprit to those who are dairy sensitive. Whey is derived from dairy (typically cow or goat milk)

Each individual's response to these ingredients can vary. If you suspect a multivitamin is causing breakouts, it may be helpful to consult with a naturopathic doctor or holistic nutritionist to adjust the dosage or explore other formulations/brands that better suit your needs. Additionally, keeping a skincare diary can help identify specific triggers by documenting any changes in skin condition in relation to dietary and supplement intake.