Many people desire healthy, long locks of hair, but what most people do not realize is the drastic effect that nutrition has on hair health and growth processes. There are many healthy foods for your hair that will aid in promoting strong, growing hair follicles. You may be asking, what are the best things to eat for healthy hair? Below is a comprehensive guide to the best food for healthy hair growth, as well as sample breakfast, lunch, and dinner meal options that will promote healthy hair growth. Follow this hair growth foods list, and watch your hair health improve each day as a result.
The Best Food for Healthy Scalp and Hair
Dietary choices impact a myriad of other aspects of your health, chief among them your hair health. The foods you consume are what feeds your hair, which makes choosing the right foods to boost the nutrients your hair receives essential to achieving your optimal hair health. By cultivating a diet rich in healthy fats, proteins, vegetables, and fruit you will be able to drastically improve the health of your hair, as well as your overall health. Below are some of the most beneficial foods and vitamins are known to promote healthy hair growth.
- Spinach: Hair loss if often rooted in a mineral deficiency, which is often unknown and therefore often goes uncorrected. By maintaining a diet full of mineral rich foods, you will reduce the likelihood of hair loss resulting from a mineral deficiency. One of the best foods to help aid in maintaining healthy mineral levels is spinach. Spinach is extremely rich in Iron and sebum. Sebum acts as a natural conditioner that nourishes the hair and scalp while promoting moisture retention. Spinach also contains high levels of Magnesium, Potassium, Calcium, Iron, and Omega-3 Acids. These vitamins and minerals coalesce to increase your hair’s shine, luster, and overall health.
- Bok Choy: Bok choy is a Chinese vegetable that is known for its leafy green appearance. In traditional Chinese cuisine, bok choy is often used as a green vegetable to accompany a dish. What many people do not realize is that this leafy green vegetable possesses high concentrations of Iron, which makes it an extremely beneficial food to help boost hair growth and promote hair health.
- Avocados: Avocados are chief among foods known to promote healthy hair due to their healthy fat composition. Not only are avocados delicious, they are also a superfood that can boost your daily dose of vitamins and revitalize your locks. Avocados are rich in Vitamin D, Vitamin E, Vitamin B, Vitamin A, and Omega-9 Fatty Acids, all of which aid in repairing damaged hair follicles, remediating scalp damage, and imbuing your locks with the moisture they need. Avocados are not only great to consume in meals or as a snack; they also make a great component to include in a DIY hair mask. By mashing and applying avocado directly to the surface of your hair and allowing it to soak in, you will increase hair volume, moisture retention, luster, and overall health. By incorporating avocados into your diet, you can provide your hair with healthy fats and vitamins to attain your most healthy hair to date.
- Blueberries: Blueberries are widely known for their high levels of antioxidants, but another important component of blueberries is their concentration of Vitamin C. The presence of Vitamin C in the body increases the production of collagen, blood circulation, and helps to rid the body of harmful free radicals. These beneficial attributes make blueberries an ideal food to incorporate into your diet to improve your hair health. Not only do blueberries aid in your overall hair health, they have also been shown to prevent hair loss. The high concentration of antioxidants in blueberries have been shown to protect the scalp, as well as to increase the strength of the hair follicles. In addition to being beneficial for hair health, blueberries also offer several substantial benefits for overall health. Blueberries have been shown to increase cardiovascular health by increasing blood circulation throughout the body, to aid in digestive regulation, and to improve the function of the immune system.
- Oatmeal: Oatmeal is known for being a healthy food due to its heart-healthy components and dense composition of healthy carbohydrates. However, while many know that oatmeal is a diet-friendly option, many do not realize the substantial benefits oatmeal imparts on hair health. Steel cut oats are rich in Iron, Zinc, Fiber, Polyunsaturated Fat Acids (PUFAs), and Omega-3 Fatty Acids. Each of these elements has been shown to boost overall hair health, stimulate hair growth, and increase hair elasticity and volume.
- Yogurt: Yogurt contains high levels of Vitamin B and D, making it an ideal choice for those seeking to improve their hair health. Vitamin B and D aid in boosting the health of the hair follicle, increasing the strength, shine, and elasticity of hair. Like avocados, yogurt is another food that is not only beneficial when consumed but can also be used as a hair mask. By applying yogurt directly to the hair follicles and massaging it into the scalp, you can nourish the hair follicles and boost the moisture retention of the hair. When selecting yogurts to incorporate into your diet, it is important to keep in mind that some brands and types of yogurt are superior to others. When selecting yogurt, be sure to stay away from yogurts laden with artificial sweeteners, preservatives, and added sugars. Many yogurts boast as being healthy options but contain high levels of sugar that can be potentially harmful to blood sugar levels as they cause a momentary spike, which is then followed by a sharp downturn. This can lead to headaches, feeling of dizziness, and an overall unwell feeling as your body is searching for a way to stabilize your blood sugar. When choosing yogurt, target greek yogurt as it contains higher levels of protein and when possible select yogurt that is plain and add fresh fruit, such as blueberries, to add sweetness.
- Eggs: Eggs are one of the cheapest, and most beneficial, foods that can help boost hair health and prevent hair loss. Eggs are widely available, making them easily accessible and an ideal addition to your diet. Eggs are rich in protein, as well as Biotin. Biotin has been shown to improve skin, nail, and hair health. In addition to Biotin naturally occurring in certain foods, it can also be purchased as a standalone supplement that is taken daily to provide additional nutrients to repair damaged hair and promote healthy hair growth. Protein is also a main component of eggs and is one of the primary building blocks that form hair follicles. By regularly consuming eggs, you will boost the amount of protein your hair receives, which results in increased hair growth and improved hair quality. Diets that contain low levels of protein cause the body to detract protein from stores that are meant to nourish hair follicles. This can result in hair that lacks shine, is brittle, and stagnant in hair growth. By maintaining a diet that contains high levels of protein, you can prevent your body from tapping into the hair’s protein stores, thereby ensuring it gets the protein it needs to form strong, healthy hair follicles.
- Salmon: Salmon is often referred to as a superfood due to its high levels of Omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-3 fatty acids are not naturally produced by the body, but rather must be obtained through taking supplements or by consuming foods that possess Omega-3 fatty acids. Salmon is one of the best natural sources of Omega-3 fatty acids, which makes it an ideal food to integrate into a diet aimed at improving hair and scalp health. Omega-3 fatty acids keep hair follicles voluminous and high in shine, while also stimulating hair growth. While salmon is an extremely beneficial food to consume for hair health, it also offers many other important benefits for overall health. Due to its levels of Omega-3 fatty acids, salmon has been shown to aid the body in regulating and processing insulin more efficiently. Insulin is produced by the pancreas and helps to control the blood sugar levels present in the body, which affect a myriad of processes and systems within the body. By regulating insulin levels, salmon has been shown to be beneficial for female hair loss and male pattern baldness, both of which have been linked to insulin resistance. If you are not a fan of seafood or cannot integrate salmon into your diet on a regular basis, you can also purchase a standalone Omega-3 fatty acid supplement to take each day to improve hair health.
- Almonds: Almonds are often mentioned when examining healthy snack options due to their composition of healthy fats and protein. What many do not realize is that a handful of almonds each day can also impart important benefits upon hair health. Almonds possess high levels of Vitamin E and Magnesium, which have been shown to promote hair growth, increase hair thickness, and to help improve overall body function. In addition to this, almonds also possess high levels of Biotin, which is an extremely beneficial component to healthy hair, skin, and nail growth. Like yogurt and avocados, almonds have also been finding their way into many modern hair products and masks. By harnessing the benefits of almonds, many hair companies have begun adding almond oil into their products to help with moisture retention and shine. Almond oil has also been shown to function as a heat protectant when applied directly to the hair follicle.
Healthy Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner Options for Hair Growth
While the above list may give you a good starting place to begin making healthier dietary choices for your hair, you may be asking yourself how to combine these elements, and other foods are shown to be healthy for hair, into a wholesome meal that you can integrate into your daily routine. Below is a handful of healthy breakfast, lunch, and dinner options that will help promote hair growth and improve overall hair health.
- Yogurt with blueberries and almonds: Eating healthy does not need to be boring, and eating foods that target hair growth do not need to limit your options to begin your day. A simple breakfast of plain greek yogurt topped with fresh blueberries and sliced almonds will start your day with a boost of vitamins and minerals known to improve hair health.
- Steel cut oats with almond milk and pumpkin seeds: Oats are known to be a great way to start the day due to their complex carbohydrate composition providing long-lasting, heart healthy energy, but they also offer substantial benefits to hair health. In addition, pumpkin seeds are rich in Vitamin A, Vitamin K, and Calcium, which stimulate hair growth.
- Eggs with spinach and fresh tomatoes: If you prefer to start your day with savory instead of sweet, try cracking a few eggs with fresh spinach and topping them with freshly cut tomatoes to give yourself a boost of protein sure to start your day right and give your hair the nutrients it needs.
- Spinach salad with blueberries, goat cheese, and balsamic vinaigrette: Just because it is a salad does not mean it needs to be boring. By combining the nutrient dense composition of spinach with the antioxidant packed addition of blueberries, this meal is not only delicious but healthy for your hair.
- Sweet potato, black bean, and avocado burritos: With a whole-wheat tortilla, you will get the complex carbohydrates to keep you full until dinner, while also giving your hair the beta carotene packed benefit of sweet potatoes and the healthy fats in avocados.
- Lentils, sweet potato, and seasoned chicken breast: Lentils are rich in iron, zinc, protein, and Biotin, while lean poultry like chicken breast offers a boost of healthy protein to stock the stores for your hair.
- Soy glazed salmon with sautéed mushrooms and bok choy: This Asian-inspired dish combines the Omega-3 fatty acids of salmon with the Iron rich leaves of bok choy. In addition to this, mushrooms offer high levels of copper, which has been shown to help hair maintain its natural color.
- Seared halibut with roasted yellow peppers and tomatoes: Tomatoes are known to be beneficial to hair health, but lesser known foods like halibut are also extremely important for hair healthy due to its high levels of magnesium. In addition, yellow bell peppers contain five times the amount of Vitamin C as oranges and are known to strengthen the hair shaft and follicles.
- Lentil Soup: Packed with nutrient dense lentils, lentil soup also incorporates the substantial benefits of carrots to provide a hearty dinner option to boost hair health.
Give these recipes a try in addition to your hair growth products and you’ll be impressed by the results you see!