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Everyone wants to have a beautiful head of hair. In addition to the outward appearance it gives, it is also seen as an overall sign of health.
In fact, maintaining beautiful hair does require good nutrition and vitamins.
Let's take a look at the necessary nutrients and vitamins for hair health and growth.
It may surprise you to learn that hair is almost completely made of protein. It is a hardened form called keratin. If you are low in protein, the hair becomes weaker and grows slower.
While protein deficiency is uncommon these days, it is important to realize its importance to hair health and growth.
Zinc is a mineral that works to strengthen the hair follicles. It does this by binding together the proteins mentioned above. Strong hair follicles mean less hair loss.
Zinc also assists with the oil glands helping to prevent overdrying that can lead to dandruff. Shellfish, sunflower and pumpkin seeds, and nuts are good sources of zinc.
Iron is an essential component for several bodily functions. It works to assist the red blood cells to move oxygen throughout your cells.
The hair follicles need that oxygen to remain healthy and intact. Not having enough iron is a big factor in hair loss. This is often seen as a problem in women.
Foods rich in iron include eggs, tuna, spinach, and soybeans. You can also purchase iron supplements.
We all know how vital water is to our very survival. It is also a key part of your hair.
Your mane needs moisture to keep from breaking and to avoid a dry scalp. There are products you can buy to hydrate your hair and put moisture on your scalp, but the best idea is just to drink plenty of water.
This odd-sounding nutrient is found in the cells on your scalp and helps to produce natural oil for hydration. Adding more of this into your diet will increase the shine of your hair and also help it grow.
You can find Omega-3s in salmon or sea bass, or you can also get it through flaxseed, soybeans, and walnuts.
Vitamin A is used throughout your body and is essential for growth. It is necessary for hair, which just happens to grow faster than any other tissue in your body.
It is also key in the production of sebum, which is a moisturizer and keeps hair shiny and healthy.
Vitamin A is found in many foods. You should eat carrots, sweet potatoes, spinach, kale, milk, eggs, and yogurt. You can also get Vitamin A supplements.
There are actually 8 different vitamins in the B family. They work together, but each has its own function.
B7 is also known as biotin and is sometimes called the beauty vitamin. It is one of the most important vitamins for hair growth. It can be found in strawberries, carrots, chicken, cauliflower, and eggs.
B6 and B12 form red blood cells. These cells transport important oxygen and other nutrients to the hair follicles and scalp. These vitamins are found in almonds, meat, leafy greens, and whole grains. You can also get them as a supplement.
Free radicals are roaming around inside your body causing a host of problems, including aging.
Vitamin C is a great defense against the oxidative stress brought on by free radicals. It also enables your body to absorb iron, which is important in hair growth.
Vitamin C creates collagen, which is a protein that is involved in your hair's structure. You can find Vitamin C in citrus fruits, peppers, and strawberries as well as in supplements.
It is thought that Vitamin D plays a part in the production of hair by creating new follicles. They are the small pores where the hair grows from the scalp.
When Vitamin D levels are low, it can lead to hair loss.
Even if you are not experiencing hair loss, most people do not get enough of Vitamin D. Sun exposure is a great source along with fish and certain mushrooms. There are also Vitamin D supplements.
Vitamin E is a lot like Vitamin C in that it is an antioxidant that works on those free radicals.
It has also been shown in studies to boost regrowth in hair when taken as a supplement.
Vitamin E can be found naturally in spinach, avocados, almonds, and sunflower seeds.
Most people get enough of these nutrients and vitamins through their balanced, daily diet.
There are, however, instances where certain medical conditions can deplete some of these within the body. Anyone taking antibiotics for an extended amount of time or someone with a thyroid issue can find themselves at risk for hair loss or damage.
If you are experiencing hair loss or dry scalp you may consider using supplements. Be careful and do your research, though, because all supplements are not created equal and they are not FDA regulated.
If you are unsure whether or not you need a supplement, talk to your doctor.
In addition to vitamins and supplements, there are a few simple steps to help keep your hair healthy and beautiful.
Do not wash your hair in very hot water. Lukewarm water is better for not drying out your scalp or hair. Also, try to not wash it every day. Give your hair a break from shampoos and dryers every once in a while.
Go easy on the dye. We all want to look our best, but over-processing your hair will damage it. Be sure to deep condition your hair if you color it or do some other type of process.
Get regular hair cuts. It isn't necessary to keep your hair short, but trimming the split ends will help your hair grow and will also keep it looking fresh and sleek.
Give your hair room to breathe. You should not always have something in your hair. Go easy on the ponytail holders. Be careful how many times a day you brush it, and always brush it with a plastic brush to minimize damage. You should also try to keep your hands out of your hair; no twisting, twirling or pulling.
If your hair is already damaged, here are some steps to restore its beauty.
Good nutrition and grooming habits help to make sure your hair stays full, vibrant and shiny. Taking vitamins for hair health is a great extra step to feel confident and beautiful.
For all your beauty needs, or if you have any additional questions, please reach out.