Many people think that the best way how to keep your hair healthy is to apply expensive products on their hair and scalp, from shampoos and conditioners to oils and moisturizers. But this isn’t the case! Keep in mind that even the most expensive hair care products can only do so much for hair and scalp health, mainly because of their topical application.
The foundation of health starts from within – and it means proper nutrition with the goal of feeding your hair and scalp with the right nutrients. Here then are the top ten foods for healthy hair that you should be adding to your daily diet.
If there’s a group of food good for hair that must be in your diet, then these are fatty fishes, especially salmon, mackerel, and sardines. These are packed with omega-3 fatty acids, essential fatty acids also found in the hair shaft and in the cell membranes of the scalp. These natural oils keep both the scalp and hair moisturized – or hydrated – thus keeping both of them healthy in every way possible.
Your body cannot make omega-3 fatty acids so you must get them from food particularly fatty fishes, the best source, and from dietary supplements. You can eat a serving of fatty fish every other day of the week for good results.
Spinach may seem like a surprising way how to keep hair healthy but it makes sense. The dark leafy vegetable contains high levels of vitamins A and C, beta carotene, iron, and folate, which work together for healthier scalp and hair. These nutrients keep the hair and scalp moisturized, too, resulting in less breakage, split ends, and dead skin buildup.
Collard greens are also great for hair health because of their high levels of vitamin C, a powerful antioxidant that fights off aging including thinning hair. Kale can also be added to the mix.
Tip: Mix spinach, collard greens, and kale in a salad, drizzle lemon juice over it, and serve with a dash of nuts or seeds for maximum effect on hair growth.
Lemon, by the way, is also used for gray hair treatment at home.
Eggs are among the best food for hair growth because of their high amounts of biotin, a B vitamin that promotes good hair growth and even strengthens brittle fingernails. In fact, biotin deficiency can result in hair loss so it’s important to get it from regular consumption of eggs.
Eggs also have sulfur, an essential mineral in several body functions including absorption of vitamin B and detoxification in the liver. Sulfur is also important in the production of keratin and collagen, which aid in the maintenance of lustrous locks, supple skin, and strong nails.
Used in a wide range of ways from guacamole to smoothies, avocados are considered as super-food because of their high levels of vitamins A, D and E as well as omega-9 fatty acids. All of these nutrients are the building blocks of health hair and skin, such as Vitamin E fighting off free radicals and omega-9 fatty acids for moisturizing the hair strands.
Avocados are among the most versatile food in the ways how to make your hair healthy because these can be used orally and topically. Add a small avocado to castor oil and coconut oil, mash it and mxi well, massage to the scalp and hair, and rinse after an hour; repeat the process 2-3 times a week for good results.
These saltwater delicacies are also among the best food for hair, if a bit more expensive, because of their abundant level of zinc. The mineral is crucial in the normal function and growth of skin cells including the scalp, as well as in the normal growth of hair. In fact, one of the side effects of zinc deficiency is hair loss, even in the thinning and/or falling out of eyelashes.
Half a dozen oysters can give 500 percent of the daily requirement although we don’t suggest eating them every day. You can also eat other zinc-rich foods, such as fortified cereal, beef, and crabs.
These legumes are foods that help hair growth because these are excellent sources of iron, a mineral crucial in promoting healthy blood circulation. The better the blood circulation to the scalp, the healthier the scalp and hair will be because of the efficient flow of oxygen and nutrients.
Each individual will require different levels of iron every day. But in general, adults younger than 50 should get 18 milligrams of iron per day while adults older than 50 will only need 8 milligrams per day. A single cup of cooked white beans contains nearly 8 milligrams of iron; other types of beans, such as lima or pinto beans, can be substituted.
The creaminess of Greek yogurt makes it one of the most delicious foods that promote hair growth. It’s no wonder then that it’s used with many of the other recommended foods here. For example, it can used as dressing for a spinach salad so you get a double punch.
Greek yogurt is packed with protein, the hair’s building blocks, so the more of it you eat, the more your hair can become stronger, shinier, and healthier. It’s also rich in vitamin B5, or pantothenic acid, which can aid in the prevention of hair thinning and loss so it’s a common ingredient in hair care products, particularly shampoos and conditioners.
The sweet and tangy tropical fruits packs in plenty of Vitamin C, an antioxidant that protects hair from breakage including split ends and fights against the effects of aging. Vitamin C is also necessary in the production of protein, the hair, nail and muscle builder so important in maintaining strong strands. The stronger your hair strands, the better it can withstand the heat, especially when you like using one or two of the best hair steamers.
A cup of guava contains 377 milligrams of ascorbic acid, an amount more than four times the recommended daily amount, too. But don’t just settle for guavas since variety is a must so we recommend strawberries, oranges, and other citrus fruits.
No list of the best food for hair growth will be complete without mentioning red bell peppers! These vegetables contain higher levels of vitamin C than citrus fruits like oranges – and we all know that vitamin C is a precursor of collagen and a powerful antioxidant. Vitamin C is also important in protecting the scalp and hair from sun damage, a common cause of thinning hair (i.e., thermal damage).
Let’s not forget that when it comes to nutrition, size doesn’t usually matter – and it holds true for nuts and seeds, among the best foods good for hair growth! We highly recommend the following nuts and seeds:
Keep in mind, furthermore, that a balanced diet is still the best way in maintaining good overall health that, in turn, promotes healthy hair and scalp.
Growing up as a kid who played outside, Samantha enjoys an active lifestyle and emphasizes health as a key component to her life. She enjoys sharing her knowledge with others so that anybody can live a healthy life. On the weekends, you can find her hiking around Southern California!