Can you eat your way to great skin?

What you eat can make a difference to your skin. Certain foods cause hormones to surge in your body, which can trigger spots. And other foods can help your skin look great. As teen/tween bodies are a total hormone party, it makes sense to eat things that are going to help your body function better, right?

We asked Lucinda Miller, naturopath and expert on child nutrition, to make things simple for you in her guide to teen and tween nutrition skin heroes here:

“Are you dealing with pimples or acne right now? This is totally normal while you’re going through puberty, and everyone gets pesky spots from time to time. But when it starts messing with your feelings, it’s time for action. Before you dive into complicated stuff, try these simple tips and nutrition heroes for clearer skin:


Say no to junk food and refined sugar most of the time. These can make your skin go haywire if you have too much! Instead, snack on fresh fruits like apples or berries; or munch on oatcakes or crunchy veggies with hummus. Making your own snacks can be fun, too! Try whipping up some energy balls with nuts, cocoa powder and dried fruits.


Water is your skin’s best friend. It helps flush out toxins and keeps your skin looking fresh. Aim to drink at least 8 glasses a day. Opt for non-plastic water bottles to avoid nasties like BPA, which can mess with your hormones and switch to a cool, stainless steel water bottle to carry around instead!


This mineral is like a superhero for your skin! It helps reduce inflammation and can even speed up the healing process for those annoying pimples. Choose zinc-rich foods like pumpkin seeds, chickpeas, spinach and dark chocolate (check the label and make sure it’s over 70% cocoa solids). If you’re not getting enough from your diet, consider taking a supplement for a few months.


Vitamin A is a key player in keeping your skin healthy and happy. It helps regulate oil production and prevents clogged pores. Load up on foods like butter, eggs, carrots, sweet potatoes, apricots, spinach and kale. These veggies are not only good for your skin but also for your overall health. Win-win!


These healthy fats are like magic for your skin. They help reduce inflammation and keep your skin hydrated from the inside out. Enjoy lots of omega-3-rich foods like salmon, mackerel, anchovies, walnuts, and chia seeds. Not a fan of fish? No worries! You can also get your omega-3 fix from fish oil capsules or vegan marine algae supplements.


Your gut health is closely linked to the health of your skin – it’s called your gut-skin axis. Probiotic foods help balance the good bacteria in your gut, which can reduce inflammation and improve your skin’s appearance. Try probiotic-rich foods like yoghurt, kefir, and fermented foods like miso, sauerkraut and kimchi. You can also take a probiotic supplement to give your gut (and skin) an extra hug.


Green veggies are packed with vitamins, minerals and antioxidants that are great for your skin. They help reduce inflammation and keep your skin looking bright and radiant. Eat plenty of veggies like broccoli, dark salad leaves, peas and green beans. You can toss them into salads, stir-fries, or smoothies for an extra boost of skin-loving goodness.

Remember, it’s not about being perfect with your diet. Just add a little goodness to your diet and treat your skin right. Enjoy your favourite treats now and then – no guilt needed! Your skin will thank you later.”

Lucinda Miller is the clinical lead of NatureDoc and runs a team of UK-wide nutritional therapists specialising in family nutrition and stocks the Spots & Stripes range at She has been practising as a naturopath for over 25 years, qualified in Functional Medicine and is author of the bestselling cookbooks The Good Stuff and I Can’t Believe It’s Baby Food. Look out for Brain Brilliance, published end August 2024. She is the mum of three and lives in Wiltshire.