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Food Spotlight: Whey Supplements and Dairy Alternatives


A new problem is emerging in gyms across the country, and it’s wreaking havoc on our complexions.  The increased use of whey protein supplements, which is derived from cow’s milk, is causing acne in people who have never had problems before. And if they did have a zit every once in a while? Their acne got much worse.

The most surprising findings from the research: The effect of whey protein on acne is more prominent in females than in males, and also in people with no family history of acne. This means, acne caused by that post-gym smoothie is entirely preventable!

Researchers found the increase in acne was most pronounced during the first month of using whey protein supplements. So, think back: Did you start breaking out when you started drinking smoothies or eating protein bars containing whey? For many, it’s an “aha!” moment.

Here are some safe supplements to use in place of whey protein:
Pea protein

Hemp protein
Egg white protein

Are you a science geek like me? Read the full study here: Whey Protein Smoothies Cause Acne


creamer alternatives

Carrageenan, a derivative of seaweed that inflames and worsens acne, is being used more and more as a thickener in dairy alternatives. Algin is another form of seaweed often added to non-dairy yogurt to give it body and texture. These ingredients are a big problem for us acne sufferers, since we’ve been told to stop consuming acne-causing cow’s milk and we’re turning to non-dairy alternatives to replace cream in our coffee, milk in our cereal, and Greek yogurt.

It is becoming increasingly difficult to find carrageenan- and algin-free cow’s milk alternatives, but these are safe for acne:

Goat’s Milk without Carrageenan/Algin:
Meyenberg (full-fat and low-fat)

Hemp Milk without Carrageenan/Algin:
Pacific Original

Almond Milk without Carrageenan/Algin:
365 Whole Foods
Silk Almond Milk
Trader Joe’s (refrigerated)

Coconut Milk without Carrageenan/Algin:
SoDelicious Unsweetened Vanilla

Oat Milk without Carrageenan/Algin:
Pacific Foods (original and vanilla)

Rice Milk without Carrageenan/Algin:
Kirkland Signature Rice Dream

Goat’s Yogurt without Carrageenan/Algin:
Redwood Hill Farm (original and vanilla)
Capretta (non-fat and full-fat)

Non-Dairy Frozen Dessert/”Yogurt” without Carrageenan/Algin:
365 Whole Foods
Coconut Secret Raw Coconut Cream