Left: Sheetal Rawal, scientist (human genetics) & founder of Apsara Skin Care
By: Marty S.
We would all love it if we could keep all of the hair on our head. Yes, losing 50 to 100 hairs a day is normal, but any more than that - either due to hair fall or thinning hair - is a disaster. Our long, luscious locks should stay on our head, not slip all the way to the ground! However, you have access to a secret weapon that you may not realize you have: your diet. Yes, it’s true! While eating bad foods can obviously be a detriment to your hair and cause hair fall, eating good foods that are rich in nutrients is wonderful and can restore your hair back to a normal, healthy, and beautiful state. In fact, there are some key nutrients that are absolutely vital for the health and well-being of your hair.
Here are 5 nutrients that you should consume regularly to avoid issues like hair fall and early graying. They can all be easily found in some of your favorite natural foods! If you want to know how to utilize some of these nutrients in your diet, click here to check out our top food recipes for thick, long hair. Also, if you want to learn how to get natural hair care products, click here to purchase our natural hair care routine.
1. Protein to Revitalize Hair Follicles & Hair Strands
Protein isn’t just for building muscle mass and getting a toned body! It is also essential if you want thicker, fuller hair, not to mention more youthful skin. That’s because your hair is largely made of protein. If you are deficient in protein, your body will transfer protein to only your body’s critical parts (for example, your bones, muscles, and blood) rather than your scalp and hair. Your body will also use that small amount of protein to create important compounds such as enzymes and hormones.
This effect has two lasting effects on your hair. The first is that you will encounter less hair growth. Since your hair has less access to protein, it will be less able to grow newer hair strands. The second is that your hair will gradually become more brittle. Less protein means that your body cannot replenish and strengthen current hair strands. The result of both of these effects may mean that you will begin experiencing thinning hair, hair fall, and hair loss.
Of course, if you don’t want to see clumps of hair in your hand, you must add more protein to your diet. It is even better if you use a protein-rich home remedy on your hair. Some classic sources of protein-rich foods include nuts and legumes.
"I was having lots of issues with my hair. Lots of itchiness, lots of dandruff...I heard about Apasra...I ordered oil and a shampoo. I feel the difference now. [All of my] itchiness is gone. Hair fall is almost gone...I still do have some dandruff, but I feel it is improving a lot. I definitely recommend all the hair products."
2. Biotin to Strengthen Hair Strands & Reduce Breakage
The protein your hair is made of is called keratin. Keratin is responsible for your hair’s strength and structure. As we discussed above, protein is a great way of replenishing your hair follicles is with protein. Another way is with a nutrient called biotin. Biotin is a B
vitamin that improves keratin infrastructure. What this means is that biotin helps reduce hair breakage and boost hair quality. It has even been studied to counteract hair loss, especially for those with alopecia. Besides hair, though, other benefits associated with biotin include healthier skin and nails. Conversely, if you are deficient in biotin, you may begin seeing thinning hair and hair fall as well as brittle hair and nails.
Since biotin is a water-soluble vitamin, your body cannot save any excess amount. Thus, you should get your daily dose of biotin through food instead of supplements. Biotin-rich foods include mushrooms and sweet potatoes.
3. Iron to Promote Hair Growth
You don’t just need protein for healthy, thick hair. You also need oxygen. Of course, to get oxygen into your system, all you need to do is breathe, but how much oxygen your body will use for healthy hair growth depends on how much iron is in your bloodstream. When you aren’t getting an adequate amount of iron in your diet and you develop an iron deficiency, your body will stop giving iron to your hair follicles in order to save it for more vital functions of your body. Thus, when your hair isn’t receiving enough oxygen, you might start experiencing hair issues like hair fall, hair loss, and slower hair growth.
Boosting your daily intake of iron has other non-hair-related benefits too. For instance, because of increased oxygen circulation, iron may brighten up pale skin as well as reduce the likelihood of anemia. It is possible to consume too much iron, so be sure to get enough iron regularly with food rather than supplements. You can add more iron to your diet by eating foods like spinach, lentils, and whole wheat bread.
4. Vitamin C to Eliminate Hair Issues Caused By Free Radicals
Free radicals pose a huge threat to our hair. These compounds negatively impact our hair follicles and the proteins in our hair, which could lead to early graying of hair, hair breakage, hair fall, et cetera. Free radicals are difficult to avoid because they come from many sources such as pollution and UV rays. However, we can easily neutralize these free radicals with antioxidants. We often talk about how important antioxidants are for your skin health, but the same can be said for your hair health too.
One major antioxidant is Vitamin C. In addition to eliminating free radicals in your system, Vitamin C is also known to boost collagen production, and collagen is a protein that your hair uses for structure. Need another reason to get more Vitamin C daily? It helps you absorb more iron, which, as we’ve stated above, is another key nutritional component in reducing hair fall.
You may already know that Vitamin C is plentiful in fruits, but you can also find it in vegetables like kale, cauliflower, and bell peppers. Amla is another food that is rich in Vitamin C, which is why it is a premier ingredient in our hair care routine.
Another good source of Vitamin C? Avocados! Use this avocado & castor oil hair mask to nourish your hair follicles and reduce hair fall. Enjoy and don’t forget to subscribe to my YouTube channel!
5. Zinc to Maintain Oiliness of Scalp
There are two ways in which zinc may be very beneficial to your hair. First, it has been studied to counteract hair loss. This might be due to the fact that zinc can help with cell
reproduction, tissue repair, and tissue growth. Second, zinc can keep your oil glands in your scalp functioning properly. Natural oils are important for your hair because they keep your hair strands nourished and can prevent hair breakage. While too much oil leaves your hair looking greasy, using zinc can ensure that your hair is healthy without the use of any excess oil.
If you want to get more zinc in your diet, choose nuts and seeds like cashews, almonds, and pumpkin seeds. While whole grains and legumes contain zinc, keep in mind that they also contain a substantial amount of phytates, which are compounds that limit how much zinc you are able to absorb. Plus, like iron, it is possible to consume too much zinc, which is thought to be linked to hair loss. So although zinc can be good for you, you never want to overdo it.
Go natural. It is good karma!