Eating too much salt can aggravate your acne

Seems that every week I’m posting something about acne. Unfortunately, it’s a topic of concern to me currently so naturally, it’ll get a lot of attention here. Anyway, I’ve been thinking real hard about the cause of my acne and while I think it’s hormonal imbalance, I suspect that there could be other reasons triggering them.

I’ve pretty much eliminated the cause due to product usage so it’s down to my diet.  Maybe because of my hormonal imbalance, certain food I take these days can aggravate my acne.  I’ve already eliminated diary products causing my cheek acne from my diet and so I was stumped when my acne returned, with a vengeance this time.  What could have caused the fresh and angry outbreak?  And it was not until recently that I suspected that it might be due to the preserved prunes I’ve been eating for the past few months!  Well, the reason is, I stopped eating them for a week and my acne calmed down. However, they returned as soon as I started on them again and then, stopped erupting when I did not munch on them!

Iodized salt can induce acne
It could all have been accidental but when I did a search on “salt intake and acne”, I found out that salt, particularly table salt, contains iodine and high levels of iodine in the diet will induce acne in an acne prone person. We don’t use a lot of salt in our cooking and even then, we use sea salt and not table salt. However, I have a bad habit of eating junk food and preserved prunes with its high content of sugar and salt, happens to be my favorite. The horrors of it all is that I can easily finished a pack very quickly and you can imagine the amount of salt intake there. The ingredient list mentioned salt and I don’t believe they use sea salt.

Iodine irritate the pore lining
So in the course of my search, I found that dermatologists have suggested that iodine intake can exacerbate acne. In fact, according to Acne Research Institute, iodine found in food and vitamin supplements irritate the pore lining.  But iodine is not only found in very salty foods such as preserved prunes and chips, but also in diary products like milk, cheese and yogurt that I’ve discussed before. Seafood, especially oyster, is another culprit.

Too much salt is bad for our skin
Well, looks like I have more reasons to curb my habit of eating junk food. Hopefully, cutting out preserved prunes and any form of salty food will help to calm my skin finally.   Anyway, too much salt is not very healthy and as I’ve written earlier, salt is bad for our skin too. I know, I know…I don’t practice what I preach where food is concerned!


  1. AtelierGal says:

    I just ate one piece of Chicken Biskit!!! T_T

    Ladies, always ask for no salt when you order fries. See how the staff scatter salt, like they have endless supplies ?

  2. pf1123 says:

    Its good I don’t like salty food.

    But I started eating cereal with milk for a week for breakfast and I have clogged pores. Coupled with my dehydrated skin from the weather and office air con these days, my skin becomes like the surface of the moon. Sighhhh…..

  3. akemi says:

    Well, I think not just salt, milk, sugar,
    or any junk food. We have to take in consideration the ying yang of chinese medicine too. It states that hot food or spices like ginger, cloves, onions, chicken, fried food for example are hot and makes you break out. So I think is a great idea to find out more about it for yourself ?

  4. Caramel says:

    I am a TCM student and yes it is true that the face reflects the well being of our vital organs. There are a few versions on the depiction of location of organs on the face from the I-Ching, and I found one of the versions on this website.

    Other than food, one’s mental state and emotions will also affect the condition of the skin and our facial tone. Feelings of happiness affects the heart, so if pimples pop on your forehead, it may mean you have been depressed, stressed or upset recently, or it may mean you have digestion problems as heart is also linked to the small intestines, where digestion and distribution of nutrients occur.
    In general, Anger affects the liver, fear and insecurity affects the kidney, being worried affects our stomach and digestion, feelings of sadness affects the lungs.
    Check with the face diagram and compare location of acne on your face, it may reflect some of your emotions recently. ?

  5. hazelnut says:

    hahahaha didnt know that.. instead of preserved prunes,
    take those dried cranberries instead?
    can or not ah?

  6. minsin says:

    The key to beautiful skin is eat in moderate and drink a lot of water. Cheer for healthy skin ya!

  7. Jyoan says:

    Ever since I started my healthier lifestyle movement, I’ve eliminated all forms of processed foods, including dried products. Dried products are very misleading, as a lot of them are really healthy foods if eaten fresh. But never after preservation. I buy baked pure almond (basically tasteless), and rather take grapes everyday, not raisins. I went nearly pimple-free for a few months running already. (Until I started eating a lot of pastries upon returning to SG. =((( starting to pop pimples again.)

  8. crystal says:

    Can I ask you, how is it possible that vitamin supplements (like vitamin e, a??) have salt in it? I dont’ recall seeing salt as the ingredient.

    In addition, I’ve heard sugar can worsen acne, does that also contribute to the acne?

  9. pf1123 says:

    I think Sesame does not mean salt in the viamin supplements. Its the iodine.

  10. sesame says:

    Aiyah…one piece is okay. ?

    Yes, asking for fries without salt is a good idea. I do that for my son who loves fries.

  11. sesame says:

    Ai…I’m horrible with salt. Since a child, I love scooping up a spoonful of them and licking them off my palm. Sometimes I even add MSG!

    Surface of the moon…I think that describes mine too. ?

  12. sesame says:

    I think there are lots of factors involved. Some people may take these food and have no problems so probably, it depends on their own ying and yang? I never had any problems with diary or salted stuff but it seems lately, I’m sensitive to quite a number of foodstuff.

  13. sesame says:

    Oh so interesting! Where do you study…as in which country? Thanks for sharing the link – I had it hyperlinked instead cos the url was too long. I had seen a chart like this about acne but mine is at this location I can’t figure out the connection to my organs at all. It’s in between the cheeks and the jaw.

    I think mine is largely due to my diet. I’ve had very stressed moments before but never had major outbreak. Now, I’m feeling more or less good but the acne kept erupting till I stopped eating preserved prunes.

  14. sesame says:

    A bit should be okay. Hee… No, it depends on you. If you’re not acne proned, then eating these in moderation is fine. For those acne proned (like me all of a sudden), then eating a bit will also cause problem.

  15. sesame says:

    What you say is true. I guess I have to accept that my body and skin doesn’t function like before and I can’t eat as I like now.

  16. sesame says:

    Haha…I try to avoid process food whenever I can but sometimes, it’s hard to resist the tempations.

  17. sesame says:

    Yes, like what pf1123 said, I mean the iodine and not the salt. Some of the vitamins have iodine and if the content is high, could be a problem for those acne proned.

    I’ve heard vaguely of sugar causing acne but apparently, that’s due to a hormonal response. In general, I would say avoid taking too much refined sugar cos it’ll cause glycation and will result in wrinkled skin.

  18. Kaith says:

    Eeep! I guess this means I should cut back on junk, too. A friend had bad acne breakout a few weeks back. I should share this entry with her.

  19. Suz says:

    BUT BUT BUT I love salt ? all the foods I eat and love have some what a lot of salt in it!! But right now I am happy with my face…the derm stuff has helped A LOT and I MEAN A skin is returning to it’s normal softness and acne free self!!

    but I wish I could cut down on salt..since it is not the healthiest thing to consume…it’s hard though…:D

    thanks for the heads up I’ll be on the look out and see if salt was a cause on the acne war recently!

  20. yay says:

    hi…it might not be related to this but where i live it’s cold…but i’m constantly feeling hot….i’m not sweating too much but still i can feel the sweat….my hand & ear are freezing & i’m not overall over dress either…i should be feeling cold but i’m hot…my feets are sweating too…can’t even wear sneakers or heels too long…beside dedorant what other recommendating would u give? thank u so much…btw u r doing such a good job w/ur posts….

  21. zhenling says:

    i quit eating junk food about 3 yrs ago. ( okay i do let go sometimes ) i thought the heatiness was causing my acne. anyways,it’s by far the best thing i have done for my skin other than drinking more water and reducing stress. i only break out from usage of unsutable products now.

  22. sesame says:

    Yup, always good to share in case this might be a problem for her.

  23. sesame says:

    I love salt too. I never had issues with them in the past. I could polished off packs of preserved prunes without a pop of pimple on my face. But now…so what I’m trying to say is that it may affect some, but not all.

  24. sesame says:

    Could be an internal balance you need to achieve though that would be better seeking some medical advice. Do you wear socks to bed? Always keep your feet warm and if you can, try soaking them in a tub of hot water for 30 mins prior to sleeping every night.

  25. sesame says:

    Oh you’re good gal! I wish I am this discipline, considering I’m much older than you. Haha…

  26. Eugenis says:

    How about washing face with salt + lukewarm water? Is it bad for acne skin?

  27. sesame says:

    I’ve never heard of washing face with salt. I doubt it’ll cause much harm though…

  28. yay says:

    thanks sesame….i’m assuming that it’s something to do w/internal…it never happen before…it started it about 2 or 3 yrs ago…feel like it’s getting worse during winter time…i don’t wear sock to bed…but i do take out my heels when i’m @ work…just wearing after 5 mins my feet is sweating…anyways thanks….

  29. Ana says:

    I did know that too much salt is not very good for health but I didn’t know it caused acne. I feel ignorant lol

    I’m a “salt lover”, I think I’ll moderate the use of it.

    Thank for this article!!

  30. sesame says:

    You’re welcome! It’s a good idea to moderate usage of salt…and sugar too.

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