A big majority of what affects hair growth and health, comes from our diet. If you are not getting the proper nutrition, it can often be reflected in the health of your hair strands. Each hair strand is made of a protein called keratin. Protein is a necessity in our diet, and if we aren’t consuming enough, it can affect the protein in the structure of the hair shaft. This can ultimately lead to weaker, more breakage-prone hair. Hydration is just as important for hair growth and hair health. If you are not hydrating yourself on the inside, this can then transfer to dehydrated hair. Fortunately, there are a variety of foods that help to promote healthy hair growth. These foods contain numerous essential nutrients that supply your hair with key vitamins and minerals that can aid in the promotion of hair growth.
Here are 10 foods that promote healthy hair growth:
1) GREEN LEAFY VEGETABLES
If you are trying to grow healthy longer hair, incorporate more green leafy vegetables with your meals. Not only will they benefit the health of your body, these vegetables provide our hair with loads of nutrition. Many green leafy vegetables contain high amounts of vitamins C, K, A and more. Vitamin C for one, aids in the production of collagen. Collagen is a protein found in various parts of the body, serving strengthening and elasticizing effects that transfer to the hair strands. Green leafy vegetables also contain many minerals like potassium and iron. Minerals such as these help to reduce hair loss, often times caused by a deficiency.
Eggs are another good choice of foods that promote healthy hair growth. Per 1 egg, there is around 6 grams of protein. A lot of us tend to eat more than 1 egg, so this amount usually ends up totaling more. Nonetheless, the protein content from eggs serve complementary results for the keratin protein in our hair. Amino acids derived from protein are delivered throughout the body, helping to benefit hair health in the process. Our hair follicles use a selection of these amino acids for various functions. Some of which serve as vasodilators that help to stimulate blood flow at the root, which in turn boosts hair growth. Others aid in keratin and collagen production.
3) GREEK YOGURT
Containing a generous combination of protein and essential vitamins and minerals, greek yogurt is a tasty choice of foods that promote healthy hair growth. It is an easy way to get a quick source of protein – per 1 container you can get around 15 grams of protein. This source of protein helps to keep the hair shaft strong through the delivery of amino acids. Additionally, greek yogurt contains a good amount of vitamin B-12. Vitamin B-12 is present in many hair growth vitamins, as it aids in red blood cell production and other cell functions. These red blood cells stimulate the hair follicle and help to promote growth.
4) LEAN CUT MEATS
While lean cut meats are removed from a good portion of unhealthy saturated fats, they maintain their high protein content. The protein from our foods, like meats, can help to strengthen and increase the elasticity of our hair strands. This is why direct protein treatments on the hair produce such noticeable / immediate results. With daily manipulation or previous hair damage, the protein bonds throughout the hair shaft become weakened. Parts of the hair cuticle can even form cracks if there is permanent damage. Protein-rich meats can help to strengthen the hair shaft over-time, promoting length retention.
Blueberries, and fruits in general, are highly beneficial foods that can promote healthy hair growth. This fruit in particular helps to accelerate a certain transition in the hair growth cycle. Blueberries naturally contain plant chemicals called Proanthocyanidins. What these components do in their reaction with the hair cuticle causes a stimulation, accelerating the hair growth cycle transition from the telogen to anagen phase. There are even certain hair care lines that feature blueberry extracts in their products to improve hair health.
6) SWEET POTATOES
Sweet potatoes serve as a good source of biotin. Biotin is present in numerous vitamins for hair growth. Another highly present vitamin in sweet potatoes is vitamin A. Both of these vitamins provide your hair strands with the proper foundation of nutrition for growth. Vitamin A can aid in sebum production, adding a boost to the natural oil to moisturize your strands. To note, while sweet potatoes are beneficial for hair growth they are best consumed in moderation. Too much vitamin A can potentially cause negative health effects, including hair loss!
Many different types of beans consist of high amounts of protein, iron, magnesium, and more. Excessive hair loss can sometimes be attributed to an iron deficiency. Iron aids in the production in red blood cells. Particularly, iron makes up the hemoglobin protein of the red blood cell. It helps to deliver oxygen, and other repair to cells throughout the body. The hair follicle receives much of this benefit, promoting unrestricted hair growth. Add beans to your meals as a beneficial choice of foods that promote healthy hair growth.
The omega-3 fatty acids present in salmon provide many health benefits, especially for the hair. They are commonly used to treat hair loss and are an essential in our diet.You will see many fish oil vitamins containing these fatty acids as well. To add, salmon contains a good amount of other key vitamins and minerals. Potassium, protein, and vitamin B are just a few nutrients present in salmon that can be of great nourishment to our hair.
Nuts like almonds, pecans, and walnuts, make for a favorable option of foods that promote healthy hair growth. These snacks are packed with nutrients all in a small size. For hair growth, nuts like almonds have a generous amount of the vitamin biotin present. In addition to biotin, nuts contain a lot of magnesium. Magnesium can help to promote a healthy scalp, and aids in the composition of proteins. A clean and healthy scalp is key to unrestricted hair growth.
10) BROWN RICE
Brown rice is a whole grain, and preserves more of the sources nutritional content. This in turn provides numerous essential vitamins and minerals that benefit the body and hair strands. You may have even heard of people using rice water for hair growth. Brown rice though, is a healthy carbohydrate and contains a favorable source of vitamin B-6. Vitamin B-6 has been found to treat hair loss, and also helps to deliver amino acids from proteins. Add this nutrient-dense choice of foods that promote hair growth to your diet and reap the benefits.
1“Amino Acids and Their Significance for Healthy Hair.” What Are Amino Acids? | Aminoacid-Studies.com – Your Information Portal on Amino Acids, www.aminoacid-studies.com/areas-of-use/hair.html.
2Newman, Vanessa. “Effects of Protein on Hair.” LIVESTRONG.COM, Leaf Group, 3 Oct. 2017, www.livestrong.com/article/481535-effects-of-protein-on-hair/.
3Panda, Bhavna, and Bhavna Panda. “10 Surprising Benefits Of Blueberries For Skin, Hair And Health.” STYLECRAZE, IncnutIncnut, www.stylecraze.com/articles/amazing-health-benefits-of-blueberries/.
4“Iron Deficiency and Hair Loss: What You Can Do.” Healthline, Healthline Media, www.healthline.com/health/iron-deficiency-and-hair-loss.