Many of the experts suggest that most of the hair problems can be solved by taking a wholesome and balanced diet which contains the correct dose of vitamins and essential nutrients that help the hair to stay healthy and strong. Of course, those who have hormonal and other problems will have to take extra help, but otherwise, rather than changing shampoos and conditioners, the best thing to keep your hair healthy is to consult a doctor and ask for supplements, make healthy lifestyle changes, and of course take care to include these vitamins and minerals I am listing below in your diet:
1. Vitamin A: Vitamin A is a fat-soluble vitamin. Vitamin A is an important nutrient for tissue and cell development, including that of hair and skin. Vitamin A is necessary for the proper functioning of eyes, immune system, skin, and many other parts of our bodies. Vitamin A has retinol which is important for the growth of cells. Vitamin A also contains antioxidants. Vitamin A is abundantly found in carrots, sweet potatoes, spinach, pumpkin, leafy vegetables, cheese, cod liver oil, fish oil, eggs, cantaloupe, broccoli, apricots, papaya, mango, milk, tomatoes, etc.
2. Vitamin B: Vitamin B is a group of water soluble vitamins that are important for overall health of human body. There are a total of 8 vitamins in this group – B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, B7, B9, and B12. These B-complex vitamins improve hair growth and reduces hair fall.
Vitamin B1 (Thiamine): Its a water-soluble vitamin. It is found in cereals, beans, grains, meat, and nuts.
Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin): Vitamin B2 along with vitamin B6 is absolutely crucial for hair growth. Your hair condition will improve a lot with a good dose of vitamin B2. Since riboflavin is easily destroyed during the cooking process, it is important that you take the supplements that contain B2. Riboflavin deficiency can result in severe or gradual hair loss. Foods that is rich in vitamin B2 are milk, leafy vegetables, legumes, mushrooms, almonds.
Vitamin B3 (Niacin): Its a vitamin necessary for general good health. Niacin occurs naturally in green vegetables and leafy vegetables, meat, eggs, fish.
Vitamin B5 (pantothenate): This vitamin is widely seen in many skin and hair care products. This vitamin’s deficiency can cause hair loss. Vitamin B5 can be applied to hair externally to make it stronger. Vitamin B5 is used widely in shampoo and conditioners. Foods rich in vitamin B5 are rice, wheat, mushrooms, tomatoes, avocados.
Vitamin B6 (pyridoxine): This vitamin keeps skin and scalp healthy and promotes better hair growth. Foods rich in vitamin B6 are fish, spinach, green peas, broccoli, peanuts, cashews, sunflower seeds, whole wheat bread, cereals, lentils, soybeans, kidney beans, chickpea, etc.
Vitamin B7 (Biotin): This is called the “hair protein.” Its one of the most important nutrient for hair and skin care. Biotin makes hair, nails stronger and helps them grow healthy. Biotin promotes cell growth. Biotin deficiency can cause hair loss and breakage. Biotin rich foods are eggs, avocado, soybeans, nuts, legumes, raspberries, cauliflower, banana, mushrooms, almonds, peanuts, etc.
Vitamin B9 (Folic acid): Folic acid is a water-soluble vitamin. It helps to repair cells and to produce healthy red blood cells. Green vegetables and leafy vegetables are a good source of folic acid. Other foods rich in folic acid are broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, egg yolk, kidney beans, lentils, lettuce, milk, oranges, peas, spinach, wholewheat bread, sunflower seeds, etc.
Vitamin B12 (Cobalamin): Vitamin B12 is a nutrient that keeps the blood cells healthy and helps make DNA. Premature greying is believe to be a result of vitamin B12 deficiency. Foods rich in vitamin B12 are fish, meat, dairy products, eggs, cheese, yogurt, etc.
3. Zinc: It is an essential trace element because its necessary for human body in little amounts. Zinc is topically used in various ointments to treat acne and skin diseases. Zinc is an important nutrient to keep hair in good healthy condition. Zinc rich foods are eggs, nuts, lentils, cereals, pumpkin seeds, garlic, sesame seeds, mushroom, spinach, brown rice.
4. Vitamin C: Vitamin C is a water-soluble vitamin which helps combat hair loss. Vitamin C is needed by body to repair damaged cells. Vitamin C is great for both hair and skin. Vitamin C also has antioxidant properties. Vitamin C protects hair and skin from free radicals. Vitamin C rich foods are guavas, broccoli, cauliflower, brussel sprouts, kiwi, papayas, oranges, citrus fruits, strawberries, oranges, tomato, peaches, potatoes, cabbage, cantaloupe, melons, peas, peppers, pineapple, spinach, sweet potatoes, turnips, etc.
5. Vitamin D: Vitamin D is believed to aid in hair growth. Vitamin D is a precursor in the hair growth cycle. Hair follicles have vitamin D receptors. Therefore, deficiency of vitamin D effects hair growth. Vitamin D is also believed to be helpful in reducing hair fall related to stress and depression. Foods rich in vitamin D are milk, cereals, eggs, mushrooms, tofu, cheese, orange juice, oatmeal, butter, etc.
6. Vitamin E: Vitamin E is essential for the good health of hair and skin. It aids in circulation to the scalp. Vitamin E aids in body absorbing other vitamins such as vitamin A, B, and C. Vitamin E rich foods are almonds, spinach, avocado, broccoli, parsley, papaya, olives, etc.
7. Iron: Iron is the most essential nutrient for hair growth. It helps increase circulation to the scalp and accelerates hair growth. Some iron rich foods are egg yolk, spinach, leafy vegetables, beans, lentils, soybeans, raisins, cereals, grains. Remember that vitamin C aids in absorption of iron, so its better if you balance the intake of both these together.
8. Protein: Hair is made up of keratin which is a protein, its the building block of hair. Protein deficiency can cause hair loss and result in weaker hair. Some protein rich foods are fish, cheese, beans, eggs, yogurt, pumpkin, legumes, etc.
9. Selenium: Selenium is a trace and essential nutrient. Its deficiency might cause hair loss. Some selenium rich foods are sunflower seeds, fish, eggs, mushrooms, grains, onions, chicken, etc.
These were some of the essential nutrients, do remember to include them in your food for healthy hair.
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