One of the biggest factors that contribute to healthy hair is diet. There are specific types of food for healthy hair that you can consciously choose to eat in order to promote healthy hair and skin. Many people do not realize the significance of the foods they consume and how those choices are mirrored within their hair growth and health. Having a vitamin deficiency affects the health of your hair, skin and nails. Maintaining a healthy well-balanced diet full of iron-rich foods, good fats, proteins, vegetables, and fruits will not only improve hair health, but also overall well-being. There are many foods and vitamin supplements for hair growth that have been proven to impart substantial benefits. There are a number of vitamin supplements for scalp and hair that are best ingested through daily diet choices, and even small adjustments in nutrition can have a large impact on hair health. Below is a guide of some of the most beneficial foods and vitamins that promote hair growth.
- Blueberries: Blueberries are high in antioxidants that fight free radicals and promote healthy hair and skin. One of the main reasons blueberries can have such a positive impact on hair health is their high levels of Vitamin C. The Vitamin C present in blueberries helps to increase the amount of collagen produced by the body, increases blood circulation, and helps to remove harmful free radicals from the body. These positive attributes help prevent hair loss, hair thinning, and improve overall hair health. In addition to the benefits offered by the Vitamin C, the antioxidants found in blueberries also help protect the scalp. Blueberries have been shown to help increase the strength of hair follicles and speed up the hair growth process. Blueberries can significantly improve hair health, but they are also extremely beneficial for overall health. Blueberries have been shown to boost the immune system, regulate digestion, and increase cardiovascular health by increasing blood circulation throughout the body.
- Yogurt: Yogurt is one of the best foods to consume when trying to improve hair health due to the high levels of Vitamin B and D yogurt contains. Vitamin B and D improve hair flexibility, strength, shine, and the overall health of the hair follicle. Yogurt can also be applied directly to the hair as a hair mask, which will aid in nourishing the hair and retaining moisture in the hair follicles. However, one important thing to keep in mind is that not all yogurts are created equal. It is best to consume yogurts that are low in added sugars and flavors, as these will help maintain blood sugar levels rather than causing a short spike and a large downfall. Greek yogurt also contains higher levels of protein, making it an ideal choice to improve hair health.
- Beets: Beets have recently experienced a surge in popularity as people realized their versatility. Beets can be consumed in any number of ways, ranging from juiced to roasted. As becoming healthy has become a mainstream cultural conversation, the frequency with which beets are used has increased exponentially due to their significant vitamins for hair and scalp. Beets contain folic acid and possess high concentrations of Vitamin C, Iron, and Carotenoids. This combination of nutrients helps in maintaining the shine of hair, improves overall hair health, and can help hair growth to increase, which leads to thicker hair. Beets do much more than just improve hair health; they also help to promote healthy muscle and nerve function throughout the body. Beets also can help maintain healthy iron and blood sugar levels when consumed regularly, which helps manage diabetes and anemia.
- Eggs: Eggs are one of the most well-known foods that have been proven to have a positive impact on hair health. Eggs are inexpensive and widely available, which makes them an appealing option for people of all socioeconomic levels, particularly since hair care products and masks can often be quite pricey. Eggs contain substantial amounts of protein and biotin, both of which have been shown to improve hair health. Biotin is known to improve hair, skin, and nail health and can also be purchased as a daily supplement to help maintain consistent levels. Protein is one of the main building blocks that comprises hair, which makes it an essential part of any healthy diet targeted at improving hair health. Because eggs contain high levels of protein, regular consumption can help boost hair growth and improve the quality of hair. When diets are too low in protein, the body saps protein from the stores meant to help nourish the hair, which can leave hair brittle, lifeless, and stagnant. Maintaining a diet with high levels of protein is also beneficial for overall health, as this can help maintain a steady weight, consistent blood sugar, and increased energy levels.
- Tomatoes: Tomatoes contain numerous vitamins and minerals that have been shown to be beneficial for overall health and have been proven to aid in increasing hair health. Tomatoes contain Iron, Magnesium, B1, B2, B3, Vitamin A, Vitamin C, and Vitamin K, all of which contribute to making tomatoes a health superfood. Tomatoes impart antioxidants and vitamins that help increase hair shine, prevent scalp odor, and safeguard hair DNA from damage. For those who swim often, a hair mask of tomato juice has also been shown to reduce damage due to prolonged exposure to chlorine. Tomato juice has also shown to be effective in helping to treat dandruff. The improvement in scalp health is due to the Vitamin C scalp benefits offered by the acidic tomato juice.
- Spinach: One of the most common causes of hair loss is mineral deficiencies. Integrating mineral rich foods into each day can help to safeguard hair from experiencing detrimental mineral deficiencies. Spinach is one of the best foods for helping increase mineral levels due to the high amounts of Iron and sebum spinach contains. Sebum functions as a natural conditioner that helps nourish the hair and scalp. Spinach also contains Magnesium, Potassium, Calcium, Iron, and Omega-3 Acids, all of which help aid in maintaining hair luster, shine, and moisture.
- Salmon: Omega-3 fatty acids are not something that the body naturally produces, so they must be consumed through Omega-3 fatty acid rich foods sources or taken in supplement form. One of the best natural sources of Omega-3 fatty acids is salmon. The Omega-3 fatty acids present in salmon promote hair growth and aid in keeping hair full and shiny. In addition to benefiting hair health, salmon is also extremely beneficial in helping prevent disease and maintaining overall good health. Salmon has also been shown to help the body regulate and process insulin more efficiently, which can be beneficial for female hair loss and male pattern baldness, which have been linked to insulin resistance. The vast array of benefits offered by salmon can also be gained by simply taking an Omega-3 fatty acid supplement.
- Oatmeal: Oatmeal has long been known as a diet friendly food due to its dense composition of healthy carbohydrates and heart healthy components, but oatmeal is also extremely beneficial for improving hair health. Oats are rich in Omega-3 fatty acids, polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs), Iron, Zinc, Fiber, and Iron, all of which stimulate hair growth, increase elasticity and volume, and improve the overall health of hair.
- Lentils: Lentils are another great source of protein, similar to eggs. Lentils also contain Iron, as well as other trace vitamins and minerals, which is vital to the growth of healthy hair. Hair needs high protein levels in order to continue growing. Hair is made up of keratin, which is a form of protein and one of the main building blocks in healthy hair composition. When diets are too low on protein, hair is more susceptible to breakage and will grow at a much slower rate. In order to have hair that grows quickly and is shiny, strong, and elastic, a diet that is high in protein is a necessity. Lentils are a nutrient dense source of protein that will help keep hair healthy, long, and growing.
- Almonds: Almonds are known for being a great snack due to their high levels of protein and healthy fats, but almonds are also extremely beneficial for overall hair health. Almonds contain high levels of Biotin, which is known for being a great asset to improving hair health, and almonds are also nutrient dense with Vitamin E and Magnesium. These vitamins coalesce to help encourage hair growth, increase hair thickness, and are all also positive for helping improve overall body function. In addition to being a wonderful dietary addition, almonds have also begun being increasingly used in hair care products and masks. Almond oil is a popular ingredient in many masks and helps to improve hair texture, moisture retention, and shine. Almond oil can be applied directly to hair and also functions as an effective heat protectant.
- Avocados: Avocados are known for being a dense source of healthy fats and are often touted as a superfood. Avocados contain significant levels of Omega-9 fatty acids, Vitamin A, Vitamin B, Vitamin E, and Vitamin D. These vitamins strengthen and repair damaged hair follicles, remediate scalp damage, and help moisturize hair. Avocado has also been known to be a great ingredient in hair masks. By applying avocado directly to the hairs surface and allowing it to sit and impart its benefits, avocados can increase hair moisture and retention, luster, volume, and scalp health. Once the hair becomes properly nourished, it can begin growing more quickly and producing new, healthy hair.
- Carrots: Carrots are known for containing Vitamin C and Vitamin E, which helps improve blood circulation in the scalp and aids in the prevention of premature graying. Carrots are also capable of increasing hair thickness, promotes healthy sebum production, and nourish the hair to retain more moisture. Carrots are not only beneficial for hair health, carrots also are proven to be beneficial in improving eyesight due to their high levels of Vitamin A. Carrots are a simple addition to any dish, do not perish quickly when purchased fresh, and pack a vitamin punch that will significantly enhance hair health with very minimal effort.
- Sweet Potatoes: Sweet potatoes have recently become more popular as their superfood qualities have been enhanced, publicized, and integrated into the public palette. Sweet potatoes are a complex carbohydrate that help maintain the feeling of fullness over an extended period of time and are nutrient dense with beta-carotene. Upon consumption, the human body converts beta-carotene into Vitamin A, which is noted for helping to reduce dandruff and improving scalp health. A dry, itchy scalp can cause hair loss or the slowing of hair regrowth, so it is vital to maintain a healthy, moisturized scalp at all times in order to have healthy locks. When there is a lack of beta-carotene, the scalp becomes itchy, which leads to dandruff, dry hair, and a need to remediate the situation. Sweet potatoes are a great way to avoid ever being beta-carotene deficient. In addition to being a complex carbohydrate, sweet potatoes are also an excellent source of protein, which will help protect hair cells.
- Oysters: Oysters may not be the most commonly consumed food, depending upon the surrounding region, but oysters contain a substantial amount of Zinc, which is crucial to producing long, healthy hair. Oysters also possess high levels of Selenium, which functions as an antioxidant and helps the body to reduce the harmful effects of the environment. This safeguarding mechanism helps promote the maintenance of proper functions, such as hair growth. The Zinc and Selenium present in oysters are also known to improve immune system health and to prevent hair loss or excessive hair shedding.
- Bok Choy: Bok choy is traditionally a Chinese vegetable that is often served as a leafy green to accompany a meal. However, bok choy is much more than just a leafy green vegetable. Bok choy is an extremely iron-rich food, making it an ideal food to consume when attempting to stimulate hair growth and improve hair health. When physicians are searching for the root cause of hair loss, they will often examine the level of ferritin in the blood. Looking at the level of ferritin in the blood helps medical professionals determine why the hair is not receiving the iron it needs to maintain a healthy composition. A diet that includes regular consumption of bok choy would aid in significantly increasing the amount of iron found in the body.
Though a healthy well-balanced diet filled with essential vitamins and minerals is always beneficial to your hair, supplements often give the extra boost you’re looking for! ScalpMed’s herbal hair supplement contains a unique blend of plant extracts and other essential nutrients scientifically proven to increase hair growth. Simply take one capsule daily and be on your way to longer, healthier hair!