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Diet For Healthy Hair: What Do You Need?

What you eat and drink on a daily basis not only affects your weight and general health but also the condition of your hair. Some foods can actually contribute to hair loss — so choosing the food you eat carefully can preserve your hair, keeping it thick and shiny for longer.

If you’re looking to prevent or slow down hair loss, check out our tips below on how to eat your way to healthier hair.

Vitamin A: important in moderation

It is important to make sure you are getting enough vitamin A in your diet, as it is key to promoting healthy hair growth. Vitamin A comes from both plant and animal sources. Make sure you’re eating plenty of red, yellow and orange fruits and vegetables like carrots, as well as leafy green vegetables. Good animal sources of vitamin A include fish oil, eggs and liver.

It’s not a good idea to turn to vitamin A supplements for hair growth. Excessive vitamin A consumption can cause hair loss, so it’s better to get your vitamin A intake from food sources if possible. Learn more about vitamin supplements and hair growth.

B vitamins are essential for blood flow

Vitamin B6, Vitamin B12 and Folic Acid are all great for ensuring the normal formation of haemoglobin, which carries oxygen from the lungs to the tissues in the body and the hair. Seeing as hair relies on a constant flow of blood and oxygen, these B vitamins should make up an important part of your diet.

A deficiency in B vitamins can lead to increased hair loss, damaged hair and poor re-growth. Make sure you’re eating protein-rich foods like meat, chicken, fish, eggs, pork and soy beans so you’re getting the B vitamins your body needs. Great sources of folic acid also include broccoli, avocado and leafy vegetables.

Vitamin C produces collagen

Just like with your skin, the tissues in your hair are held together by collagen. In order to produce collagen, your body needs a regular intake of vitamin C. Oranges, berries, melons, leafy vegetables and tomatoes all contain vitamin C and therefore should be incorporated into a healthy diet. A word of advice; don’t try and load up on vitamin C to make up for lost time as your body can’t store it!

Zinc helps with cell repair

If you have a zinc deficiency it is likely that you experience dandruff and hair loss. Zinc is a mineral that promotes cell reproduction, tissue growth and repair, so if you’re not getting enough of it, your hair is not going to grow properly. Incorporate zinc into your diet by eating seafood, poultry, mussels and oysters. Vegetarians can get zinc through eating eggs and milk, though they only supply a small amount of the mineral.

Protein makes up most of your hair

Did you know that your hair is primarily made of protein? This means you need to make sure you’re eating enough protein to maintain healthy hair growth. If you don’t eat protein-rich foods, your body will struggle to replace the hair you have lost, which may lead to thinning or even balding.

Don’t think of this as an excuse to eat steak every day though, as that’ll do you no good! Instead you need to incorporate leaner proteins like fish, chicken, soy products, beans, eggs and yoghurt into your diet. They’ll give you the right amount of protein you need to keep your healthy and growing.

If you’re a gym goer, you may wonder whether protein powder can affect your hair. Learn about the connection between whey protein and hair loss.

Carbohydrates: a source of energy

Diets high in sugar can make hair loss worse [1]. But you also need the energy provided by complex carbohydrates to ensure your follicles can produce hair. Learn more about the link between low-carb diets and hair loss.

Water: boost hydration for health hair

Last but certainly not least, you need to keep your body properly hydrated in order to maintain healthy hair and before you ask – no washing your hair doesn’t give it the hydration it needs! Instead you need to make sure you’re drinking plenty of water every day.

Adjusting your diet to improve your hair

Eating a healthy, balanced diet will improve your overall health, as well as the condition of your hair. A few small changes here and there can make the world of difference to your diet and ensure you are getting all of the vitamins and minerals you need to grow and maintain a healthy head of hair.

If you’re trying to lose weight and you notice a higher volume of hair shedding, learn how to prevent hair loss during weight loss.

Diet For Healthy Hair: What Do You Need?, Wimpole Clinic

Sources:

  1. Controversy: Is There a Role for Adjuvants in the Management of Male Pattern Hair Loss?
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