When you think of things that make your hair healthy, what comes to mind first? Is it shampoo, hair mask or some other type of cosmetic? But what about food! Surprising as it may seem, one of the ways to maintain healthy hair is a healthy diet!
To put it into perspective, think back to the times when you were on a strict diet and then after some time noticed that your hair looks dull and dry. Believe it or not, anything you eat or abstain from in your daily diet affects your hair health.
Your diet and its richness in vitamins, minerals and other essential nutrients is one factor that affects your hair health. Other factors are hereditary, hormonal, psychological (emotional stress) and medical (surgery or medication).
So what are the most important nutrients for shiny, lively and healthy hair?
Zinc: It is one of the most important nutrients for hair health. A deficiency in zinc is normally due to fad diets that are low in calories, especially popular among young teenage girls. The better thing to do is to incorporate zinc-rich food sources in your diet like meats, eggs, and seafood.
Healthy fats: Your hair needs essential fatty acids that are provided by your diet. The deficiency of these fatty acids may cause dryness of the hair scalp and result in weakened cells which can ultimately lead to hair loss and thinning. Our recommendation is to include moderate amounts of essential fatty acids in your diet to keep your hair shiny. These are found in nuts (walnuts, almonds, and peanuts), fish (Salmon, mackerel) and vegetable oils (olive oil).
Biotin: This is derived mainly from protein sources especially meat and eggs, which explains why some strict vegetarians are more prone to hair loss. This makes it very important for them to consume legumes such as lentils and beans in order to get the biotin they need.
Iron: As iron plays a major role in transporting oxygen to your various organs, low iron in your diet can lead to anemia which in turn can lead to hair loss. Meat is a major source of iron and other sources include green leafy vegetables (spinach) and legumes (lentils).
Good to remember:
Repeated pregnancies and deliveries can reduce your body’s stores of vitamins and minerals, thereby negatively affecting hair health. So remember to continue with your supplements prescribed by your doctor in order to maintain your nutrients stores.
Also keep in mind that stressful situations can affect the health and vitality of your hair. This is where regular exercise can play an important role in releasing your stress. Additionally, when combined with a healthy varied diet, this will definitely result in healthy and glowing hair for a long, long time.