Did you know, your hair grows on an average 0.5 inches every month, and 6 inches every year? Factors such as age, genetics, and diet affect and influence the rate of hair growth. It is obvious that we cannot change genetics and age factors to increase hair growth, but we can change our diet. A diet lacking essential vitamins and nutrients necessary for hair growth can lead to hair loss.
All of us want strong, shiny, and healthy-looking hair. Most women hope for long and thick hair, but not everyone is that lucky. People commonly face hair fall and hair thinning problems, especially as they grow older. Scalp conditions can also result in hair loss, but it is essential to pay attention to your diet. Eating a balanced diet with all the vital nutrients can encourage hair growth.
We have listed foods that you should include in your diet daily to promote hair growth.
Eggs contain protein and biotin, which are two nutrients essential for hair growth. Hair follicles are made of protein; thus, a lack of protein in the diet can result in hair loss. Biotin or vitamin H, a water-soluble vitamin, plays an essential role in maintaining the health of hair, nails, and skin, as it helps in the production of keratin, a hair protein. Studies have shown that consuming biotin helps improve hair growth in individuals with biotin deficiency. Zinc and selenium, also found in eggs, are great hair-healthy nutrients.
2) Dark Leafy Greens
All dark leafy greens, especially spinach, are loaded with beneficial folic acid, vitamin A and C, iron, and other hair essential nutrients. 30 grams or a cup of spinach contains almost 54 % of the daily vitamin A requirement. Vitamin A promotes sebum (oil) secretion in the scalp, keeping it moisturized and healthy. Iron deficiency anemia is also a significant cause of hair loss, as red blood cells carry oxygen and essential nutrients to the hair roots and rest of the body with the help of iron. This can be prevented by consuming green leafy vegetables, as they are rich in iron.
3) Citrus Fruits
Berries (strawberries, blueberries) and citrus fruits (oranges) are a great source of vitamin C. Your body needs this vitamin to absorb iron, and it also has potent antioxidant properties. This antioxidant action protects your hair follicles from the harmful effects of free radicals. Vitamin C also plays an important role in the production of collagen, a protein that prevents hair breakage and makes your hair stronger. A cup of strawberry provides more than the daily requirement of vitamin C. So don’t forget to enjoy a cup of cereal with berries in the morning or a glass of lemonade with honey for strong hair.
This tasty and buttery fruit is a great source of good fats and vitamin E. Fatty acids deficiency has also been linked to hair loss. One avocado provides around 21 % of your daily vitamin E requirement, improving blood circulation, and promoting hair follicles to work more efficiently for hair growth. Excess oil secretion can clog the hair follicles and prevent hair from growing. Vitamin E prevents excessive oil production and maintains pH levels. Vitamin E is also an antioxidant and stops the damaging effects of free radicals. A study found that people with hair loss problems who took vitamin E supplements for eight months experienced 34.5% more hair growth.
5) Nuts and Seeds
As our body cannot produce omega-3 fatty acids, it is crucial to get them from our diet. And what better way than to eat nuts like almonds and walnuts, which are not only tasty but are rich in omega-3 as well. A handful or 28 grams of almonds also provides 37 % of the body’s daily vitamin E needs. They are also rich in vitamin B and zinc, a deficiency of which can result in hair loss. Seeds also contain nutrients that may promote hair growth, including vitamin E, zinc, omega-3 fatty acids, and selenium. For best results, consume a mixture of seeds and nuts daily.
6) Sweet Potatoes
Sweet potatoes, a rich source of beta-carotene, is great for your hair. Beta-carotene is converted by the body into vitamin A. Vitamin A is linked to good hair health. One medium sweet potato contains almost four times the daily requirement of vitamin A. Vitamin A promotes sebum production, which keeps hair healthy. This vitamin also speeds up hair growth and makes hair thicker.