If there’s one skin concern that is not just frustrating but even affects your confidence and leaves behind permanent scars, it has to be acne. Caused by a number of factors that can range from oily skin and clogged pores, to bad lifestyle and skincare habits as well as stress, having acne as an adult can be really annoying and difficult to deal with.
And in our quest to look for newer and more effective treatments to help overcome the problem of acne once and for all, we came across an ingredient that is touted to be an excellent remedy for stubborn acne. Pantothenic acid is a compound of vitamin B5 that helps your body repair your skin’s natural barrier, enhances your skin’s moisture-retaining capacity and keeps the harmful toxins out of your system. According to research, pantothenic acid or rather a panthenol is an excellent treatment to heal as well as prevent acne.
We know what you’re wondering – what exactly is panthenol, what are the benefits of pantothenic acid for acne, is it safe and how exactly should I include it in my skincare routine? Don’t worry, because we have the answers to all the questions; all you need to do is scroll down. So, let’s get started…
- What exactly is pantothenic acid?
- Benefits of pantothenic acid for acne
- Foods that are rich in pantothenic acid
- FAQs about pantothenic acid for acne
What exactly is pantothenic acid?
As mentioned earlier, pantothenic acid is a compound of vitamin B5 and is extremely crucial for the human body to maintain good health. Pantothenic acid is naturally formed in our body, and it is water-soluble. What this means is that it dissolves in water, and therefore, if the pantothenic levels in your body increase, it can always be flushed out in the form of urine. The main function of this acid is to carry out the process of oxidation, meaning that it takes protein, fat and carbohydrates from your food and converts it to energy.
Additionally, pantothenic acid plays a very important role in regulating your skin’s barrier function, strengthening skin and considerably minimising the chances of breaking out. Pantothenic acid is often found in a lot of skincare products as panthenol, because your skin absorbs this panthenol from the product and converts it to pantothenic acid to aid the repair and healing of your skin.
Benefits of pantothenic acid for acne
There are many reasons why you need to include pantothenic acid or panthenol in your skincare routine. But one of the most common reasons why experts recommend using this vitamin is to reduce and prevent acne. Although at first, it may seem like there is no obvious connection between pantothenic acid and acne, on closer inspection, it will be clear. Let’s take a look at the reasons why pantothenic acid is beneficial for acne…
1. Reduces inflammation
When your skin is inflamed, it is the perfect breeding ground for yeast and other acne-causing bacteria to thrive. This is because inflammation causes the oil glands in your body to go into overdrive. But when you apply panthenol to the affected area, it helps in calming inflammation and reducing redness and irritation. This prevents the acne-causing bacteria from growing and manifesting into a pimple.
2. Improves moisture levels
Pantothenic acid is extremely moisturising. Using skincare products with panthenol is a great way to improve your skin’s moisture levels by reducing dryness, roughness and texture. Pantothenic acid can truly make your skin soft and supple. And when your skin is amply moisturised, it helps in keeping sebum production under control and reduces the chances of you breaking out.
3. Strengthens skin barrier
A healthy skin barrier is one of the most important prerequisites to achieving clear, glowing and problem-free skin. However, a compromised skin barrier is less capable of protecting your skin against free radicals from different environmental aggressors. Apart from this, a compromised skin barrier makes your skin more susceptible to damage, and in turn, acne. But pantothenic acid helps in thoroughly moisturising your skin and reducing inflammation. And because well-hydrated skin is synonymous with healthy, problem-free skin, pantothenic acid works really well to keep acne in check.
4. Aids in skin repair
Thanks to the anti-inflammatory, moisturising and strengthening benefits of pantothenic acid, it ends up aiding in skin repair and restoration too. By soothing inflammation and supplying ample moisture, pantothenic acid allows your skin to heal faster after an injury or damage.
Additionally, if used regularly, research claims that pantothenic acid can also help improve skin elasticity and keep it healthy and youthful for a longer period of time.
Foods that are rich in pantothenic acid
Pantothenic acid is very easily found in both plants and animals, and hence, there are plenty of food sources to get your daily requirement from. Foods like avocados, mushrooms, pork, turkey, soybean, egg yolk, broccoli, kale, yogurt, etc., are rich sources of this compound.
However, the problem is that pantothenic acid is water-soluble, and a lot of times, while processing or cooking the food, it gets lost in the process. Therefore, if you are looking to get pantothenic acid from food, then it is better to eat it raw or as lightly cooked as possible to make sure you lose the least amount of nutrients during the cooking process.
But apart from food, pantothenic acid is very easily found in a lot of supplements. Consuming these supplements, apart from delivering great skin, also helps in adding shine and lustre to your strands coupled with improving your nail health as well. Always speak to your doctor before consuming supplements to avoid the risk of side effects.
FAQs about pantothenic acid for acne
Q. How much pantothenic acid should I take for acne?
A. For adults, the recommended safe dosage of pantothenic acid is 8-11 milligrams. However, as discussed earlier, make sure to consult with your doctor before taking any supplements or medicines. This will help in preventing any unforeseen side effects.
Q. How long does it take vitamin B5 to clear acne?
A. For skincare ingredients to actually work and show results, you need to have some time and patience. As for pantothenic acid, regularly use it for at least 12 to 16 weeks to see noticeable changes in acne and clearer skin.
Q. Does pantothenic acid have side effects?
A. Because pantothenic acid is water-soluble, it is very easily flushed out from your system through your urine. This makes it relatively safer and less likely to cause major side effects, even when consumed in larger quantities. However, it is important to note that the recommended dosage is just 8-11mg per adult, and consuming more can end up causing side effects like diarrhoea.