The Top Ten Super Foods for Healthy Natural Hair
We spend a lot of time and money on researching and buying the best products to put onto our hair to make sure that our natural hair is manageable, moisturized, shiny and healthy. But how much time are you spending on putting the right things into your body? Beautiful, head turning natural hair starts with a nutritious diet.
Hair needs foods rich in vitamins and minerals for optimal health – inside and out. According to WebMD the top ten hair nutrient rich foods for optimal hair health are:
1. Salmon – contains scalp moisturizing omega-3 fatty acids, and the all important Vitamin B-12 and iron. Vegetarians can get Omega-3 fatty acids through plant based sources.
2. Dark Green Vegetables – Vitamins A and C are great for your hair and scalp because it helps you to produce sebum or oil that naturally conditions your hair. Veggies such as Broccoli, Spinach, and Swiss chard are great natural sources for these vitamins.
3. Beans – Protein rich, which stimulates hair growth. Legumes are also chock full of zinc, iron and biotin. According to WebMD, a lack of biotin can contribute to brittle hair. A minimum of 3 cups of beans a week are recommended.
4. Nuts – Nuts are rich sources of alpha-linolenic acid, (an omega 3 fatty acid), zinc, which may help prevent excessive shedding if you are deficient, and the mineral selenium which contributes to a healthy scalp. Some of the best nuts are cashews, Brazil nuts, almonds, and my favorite, walnuts.
5. Turkey & Chicken: Poultry is full of protein which your hair needs for optimal hair health as well as iron. According to WebMD, inadequate amounts of protein can result in loss of hair color and dry hair. For non-meat eaters, plant based protein can be found in nuts, beans, and grains. Don’t go over board with protein though since it’s not shown that more protein is better and in fact too much protein could result in increased health risks according to an article by the Vegan Resource Group on protein in the diet.
6. Eggs, Eggs, Eggs! Another great source of not just protein, but biotin, and vitamin B-12, which contribute to hair health.
7. Whole Grain Foods: Emphasis on whole grains, which include cereals, bread and other grain or grain based products. Whole grains contain B vitamins, iron and zinc. (Do you notice a theme here)?
8. Oysters: Full of zinc, which aids in reducing hair shedding, and stimulates hair growth.
9. Dairy Products- Low Fat Please! Low fat yogurt, cottage cheese, or skim milk are full of the hair growth producing mineral calcium as well as hair building protein in the form of casein and whey,
10. Last But Not Least – Carrots! Full of vitamin A, carrots go along way in promoting a healthy scalp.
Care for your curls by starting with a healthy diet. Your hair will love you for it.
Author: Dianne Shaddock
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