Feeding Your Roots
10 Foods for Strong and Healthy Hair
Just like our skin, our strands also require key nutrients including protein and minerals to protect its fibres and increase circulation to follicles. The result? Healthy, shiny and strong locks! The power of eating clean is vast. Besides offering you a healthy body and glowing skin, it aids in strengthening your hair follicles. This means, the dream volume and lustre you’ve always wanted for your hair is achievable through food. Get closer to your hair goals by introducing foods into your diet that are packed with vitamins and minerals.
Berries are loaded with beneficial compounds and vitamins that may promote hair growth. This includes vitamin C, which has strong antioxidant properties. Antioxidants can help protect hair follicles against damage from harmful molecules called free radicals. For example, just 1 cup of strawberries provides an impressive 141% of your daily vitamin C needs. Also, the body uses vitamin C to produce collagen, a protein that helps strengthen hair to prevent it from becoming brittle and breaking.
Spinach is a healthy green vegetable that’s loaded with beneficial nutrients like folate, iron, and vitamins A and C, all of which may promote hair growth. Vitamin A helps the skin glands produce sebum. This oily substance helps moisturize the scalp to keep hair healthy. A cup of spinach provides up to 54% of your daily vitamin A needs. Spinach is also a great plant-based source of iron, which is essential for hair growth. Iron helps red blood cells carry oxygen throughout the body to fuel your metabolism and aid growth and repair.
Sweet potatoes are a great source of beta-carotene. The body converts this compound into vitamin A, which is linked to good hair health. A medium sweet potato contains enough beta-carotene to provide more than four times your daily vitamin A needs. Research has shown that vitamin A promotes the production of sebum, which helps keep hair healthy. What’s more, vitamin A could also speed up the rate of hair growth and encourage the growth of thicker hair, all while preventing other hair follicles from regressing.
Avocados are delicious, nutritious and a great source of healthy fats. They are also an excellent source of vitamin E, which may promote hair growth. One medium avocado provides about 21% of your daily vitamin E needs. Like vitamin C, vitamin E is an antioxidant that helps combat oxidative stress by neutralizing free radicals. Vitamin E also protects areas of the skin, like the scalp, from oxidative stress and damage. Damaged skin on the scalp can result in poor hair quality and fewer hair follicles. Avocados are also a great source of essential fatty acids.
Nuts are tasty, convenient and contain a variety of nutrients that may promote hair growth. For example, approximately 30 grams of almonds provides an impressive 37% of your daily vitamin E needs. They also provide a wide variety of B vitamins, zinc and essential fatty acids. Nuts have also been linked to a wide variety of other health benefits besides hair growth, including reduced inflammation and a lower risk of heart disease. This makes nuts an excellent and easy addition to your diet.
Capsicum is an excellent source of vitamin C, which may aid hair growth. In fact, one capsicum provides nearly 5.5 times as much vitamin C as an orange. Vitamin C helps promote collagen production, which can help strengthen your hair strands. It’s also a strong antioxidant, which can protect hair strands against oxidative stress. Oxidative stress occurs when free radicals overwhelm the body’s antioxidant defense system. Capsicum is also an excellent source of vitamin A. This vitamin may help speed up hair growth while stimulating the production of sebum, which helps keep hair healthy.
Fatty fish like salmon, herring and mackerel have nutrients and are excellent sources of omega-3 fatty acids that may promote hair growth and increased hair density. Fatty fish is also a great source of protein, selenium, vitamin D3 and B vitamins, nutrients that may help promote strong and healthy hair.
Eggs are a good source of biotin, a mineral that may help boost hair growth. Thinning hair and a loss of body hair are two symptoms of a biotin deficiency. Eggs also contain other compounds that can boost hair growth, including L-lysine, vitamin D, and other certain minerals.
Seeds deliver a massive amount of nutrients with relatively few calories. Many of these nutrients may also promote hair growth. These include vitamin E, zinc and selenium. Approximately 30 grams of sunflower seeds provides nearly 50% of your daily vitamin E needs, with a wide variety of hair-healthy B vitamins. Certain seeds like flax seeds and chia seeds also provide omega-3 fatty acids. 1 serving (approx 30 g) of flax seeds can provide 6,388 mg of omega-3 fatty acids. That’s more omega-3 fatty acids than half a fillet of salmon. In order to get the best variety of nutrients, it’s best to consume a mixture of seeds.
Not only do pumpkins contain antioxidants that fight premature loss of hair, pumpkin is also full of vitamin A, iron, vitamin C, vitamin E and zinc. Pumpkin contains vitamin B9 or folate that helps in hair growth by improving blood circulation on the scalp