Healthy Hair Nutrients-For Smooth, Lustrous and Silky Hair
Hair though simple in structure has important functions in social functions. Our hair contains a strong protein called Keratin. Each hair is anchored by a follicle deep in the skin. At the base of the follicle is the hair bulb. It’s here where the cells divide and grow to build the shaft of the hair. The blood vessels nourish the cells inside the hair bulb and deliver the hormones that state the hair growth and structure during the different times of age or stress level.
Just as with the rest of our body, our diet affects our hair, as well. The difference is on the skin an imbalanced diet will show-up in the form of acne-flare-ups or swollen skin within days but with the hair its totally different. The effects will start showing up a few months after the beginning of a bad-diet or crash-diet. So what is required to maintain the texture of your hair? The answer is nutrients.
Nutrients are components in foods we eat that helps our organs to grow. For our hairs the important nutrients are:
- Protein- The main nutrient as our hair itself is made of a protein-Keratin. Proteins help hair grow strong and healthy. Less protein in diet results in brittle, weak and dry hair. Protein is highly available in dairy products, eggs, fish and chicken.
- Vitamin C- helps in absorbing iron, ideally in conjunction with iron-rich foods. It is easily available in blueberries, broccoli, kiwi fruit, strawberries and black currants. Vitamin C also helps in producing collagen, strengthens the capillaries supplied to the hair shafts.
- Omega-3 fatty acids- Since our body cannot make it on its own, is obtained from our diet. Provides the oil required to maintain the scalp texture and hydrates the hair. Available in salmon, trout, sardines and plants like walnuts, pumpkin seeds and avocado.
- Vitamin A- Required to make sebum, an oily substance created by our hairs sebaceous gland and provides natural conditioning. Scalp with fewer sebum experiences dry hair or itchy scalp. It is available in animal products and vegetables like carrots, sweet potatoes and pumpkin.
- Zinc an Selenium- Tow very vital nutrients. Lack of zinc results in hair loss. Add fortified cereals and whole grains to your diet including beef and eggs.
- Iron- Iron is very important as it makes our blood healthy and without healthy, clean blood survival is next to impossible. The hair follicle and roots get their feed from the rich blood supplied and if iron levels are low leads to anemia, resulting to hair fall and reduction in hair growth. It is available in chicken, red meat and lentils, broccoli and green salads.
- Vitamin E- Sun as important for survival is harmful too. A diet enriched with vitamin E will act as a sun shield for your hair. It is abundantly available in nuts.
Biotin- A water-soluble B vitamin: Low levels of biotin results in brittle hair and even loss of hair. It is available in egg yolk, whole grains and soy flour.