CLEAR SKIN | Dr. Whitney Bowe

Did you know that antioxidants supply the rich, colorful pigments that make our fruits and veggies so vibrant? The brighter the fruit or vegetable, the more antioxidants it contains. For instance, lycopene makes tomatoes and watermelon red, and beta-carotene gives carrots and sweet potatoes their orangey hue.

In Antioxidants 101, I explained why antioxidants are so critical to restoring and maintaining your skin’s health. Now, I’m going to give you the scoop on how to get the right antioxidants into your diet to help you achieve your glowing skin goals.

Here’s my list of 5 antioxidants which boost your skin’s health and where you can find them:

  • Vitamin C, to help synthesize collagen and prevent and treat UV-induced damage: Vitamin C is found in oranges, red peppers, kale, brussels sprouts, broccoli, strawberries, grapefruit, guava
  • Lycopene, to help stabilize DNA structures in the nuclei of skin cells and promote smoother skin: Mostly found in tomatoes, small amounts in guava, watermelon, and pink grapefruit
  • Polyphenols, to help repair damaged skin and restore elasticity: These are the flavonoids and catechins (powerful antioxidants) found in green tea, dark chocolate, blackberries, cherries, guava, and apples.
  • Zinc, to help support antioxidant pathways overall: Oysters, red meat, poultry, beans, nuts, whole grains
  • Vitamin E, one of the most important antioxidants in the skin: it protects sebum from inflammatory damage, found in: almonds, spinach, sweet potato, avocado, sunflower seeds. olive oil.

And, in very exciting news -here’s our twist- sunscreen dietary supplements are starting to emerge on the market which are based on the power of antioxidants. As I share on my Dr. Whitney’s Picks Page, which is a curated collection of my favorite products backed by strong science, Heliocare dietary supplements are a patented specialized extract of Polypodium leucotomos (PLE), a tropical fern native to Central and South America that has been used for centuries as a remedy for skin related conditions. The science behind Heliocare is strong and solid, which is critical to me when I recommend a product to people who trust me or use it myself.

Made of a powerful blend of antioxidants, Heliocare protects your skin from the inside out from free radicals. Those free radicals can come from UV light, infrared light, visible light, pollution, or even from our natural metabolic processes. Heliocare is one extra layer of protection against premature signs of aging, including brown spots, and skin cancer. I suggest that my patients take one pill every morning. If you’re heading out in the sun, consider taking 2 each morning. But it’s not a substitute for sunscreen. It’s meant to work synergistically with sunscreen.

So, there you have it! Not only will your body feel energized and strong by these antioxidant-packed picks, but your skin will thank you, too! Next up: which antioxidants you should be incorporating into your skincare routine, including product recommendations. Stay tuned!

QUESTION 1: What helps with acne scarring?
ANSWER: When it comes to acne scarring, there are many options that can smooth out those scars, but they usually work best when used as part of a personalized treatment plan. Topical retinoids are key to use at home, as they help to rebuild the collagen especially in atrophic scars (ones that appear depressed or have a shadow). If scars are raised (so called hypertrophic scars), then cortisone shots can make a huge difference. For ice pick scars, and many types of rolling scars, I usually combine lasers with microneedling and fillers. I use lasers like the Fraxel laser to resurface the skin. Microneedling is amazing for acne scars as well. I can combine microneedling with your own plasma (the so-called Vampire Facial), or I can combine microneedling with radiofrequency energy (the Endymed Intensif). Last, chemical peels can also help to slowly even out the tone and textural changes associated with acne sequelae. (more…)

I wanted to share more insight into the food swaps for beautiful, clear skin that I discussed on GMA!

Skim Milk

As I discussed on Good Morning America, a number of studies are now showing that if you drink dairy milk, you will be more likely to struggle with breakouts and acne. We believe this issue arises from a combination of hormones that are found in the milk as well as milk proteins like casein and whey. Skim milk has actually been found to show the STRONGEST link to acne flares.


Instead of SKIM MILK, choose ALMOND MILK OR COCONUT MILK. Both are low in calories and are delicious!

Whey Protein Dietary Supplemnents:

As I also mentioned on GMA, the vast majority of protein powders and nutritional bars are made with whey protein, which has also been shown to contribute to inflammation and acne in the skin. Many of my friends and even my family members drink shakes containing whey protein daily as part of their meal plan! However, many athletes who use whey powder in their shakes or eat protein bars made with whey are finding that they are breaking out on their faces, chests and back.


Instead of WHEY PROTEIN SUPPLEMENTS, opt for VEGAN OPTIONS. Many of the companies that make these dietary supplements now offer vegan alternatives which do not contain whey. Look for pea protein or rice protein!

Refined Carbs:

If you are breaking out, you want to make sure to avoid refined carbohydrates like white bread, cornflakes, chips and pretzels.


Instead of REFINED CARBS, choose QUINOA, BARLEY or SWEET POTATOES. These choices are great for your skin and for your waistline!


I’m a featured expert in this week’s @FurtherFood FREE sugar detox- you get 7 days of recipes with shopping list an…



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This site offers health, wellness, fitness and nutritional information for educational purposes only. The information on this website is NOT intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional and is not intended as medical advice.

© 2018 - Dr. Whitney Bowe

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