What’s A Healthy Hair Diet, and Do I Need To Go On One?
Here’s how to eat your way to luscious locks.
Did you know that Rapunzel loved chomping nuts, salmon and spinach? Well… that’s not entirely true. She was locked in a tower, so it wasn’t exactly snacks on-demand. But since the fairytale protagonist is known for her enviable mane, all 70 feet of it, she must have been getting her healthy hair vitamins and minerals from somewhere.
A healthy hair diet involves eating foods with beauty benefits. Sounds simple, right? Well, there’s a little more to it. A healthy diet to grow hair you’ve been dreaming of focuses on consuming nutrient-rich foods brimming with essential fatty acids, vitamin E, and protein, all of which are scientifically-proven to help boost the quality of your strands.
Though some people out there are living, breathing Maybelline ads (yes, they were born with it), there are those of us that need to eat our way to better locks. The good news is that a healthy hair diet is entirely doable. The great news is that avocado toast is on the menu!
Waking up like Rapunzel, or at least like an influencer, is within reach with the right diet approach. Here’s how to give your hair the glow up it deserves.
Essential Fatty Acids
Not only do omega-3 rich foods help keep your skin in tip-top shape, but they’re also crucial for good hair days too. If you’re ready to tackle a healthy hair diet with everything you’ve got, look for oily fish options like salmon, tuna, and mackerel, as well as walnuts, almonds, flaxseed oil, and chia seeds.
Studies show that eating vitamin E every day can increase hair growth by 34%. Sunflower seeds, avocado, spinach, peanuts, almonds, and Swiss chard are chock full of the micronutrient.
A healthy diet to grow hair you’ve only seen in magazines requires protein. Simple as that. Protein in your diet helps the body to produce keratin, which stops hair from snapping and breaking. According to the USDA, women under 30-years-old should have 5 1/2 ounces per day. Where to find it? Look no further than meat, fish, eggs, nuts, seeds, beans, and lentils. Strong strands, coming your way.
Granted, Popeye the sailor was virtually bald – but he was still on to a winner eating all that strength-inducing spinach. Iron, which is abundant in the salad leaf, is important in a healthy hair diet for many reasons, one of which is to prevent hair loss. If spinach isn’t your jam, you’ll also find iron in other green leafy vegetables, nuts, seeds, whole grains, meat, and beans.
Yes, those little glow-givers that we always hear about are crucial parts of a healthy hair diet, too. Antioxidants essentially keep the hair ‘fed’ and conditioned with lots of nutrients. To up your intake, head straight for the fresh produce aisle where fruits and vegetables – particularly blueberries, cherries, and sweet potatoes – are bountiful in antioxidants.
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Written by Freya Drohan.