17 Foods That Help Prevent Hair Loss
Written by: Kavata Kithome
Let’s face it – if you are older than 15, then you are working to keep your head full of hair.
It’s okay, you’re not alone – this is particularly evident when you go to the cosmetic aisle; everyone wants a mane that is full of luster, strength and shine.
There are many causes for hair loss – autoimmunity genetics, age, hormones, toxicity, medications, nutrient deficiencies – and simply changing your diet can be the key to restoring your mane to its shining glory. Like most of everything else involving your health, a good diet and proper supplementation can make your hair thicker and healthier for a good many years to come.
Here are 17 foods you can add to your diet now that can have a vibrant, healthful impact on your hair:
Barley is a powerful antioxidant containing vitamin E, which has been found to absorb harmful UV rays in the scalp and protect the skin cells. Vitamin E also repairs sun damage on the scalp that can cause thinning.
Barley is great in soups and adds a nice texture and heartiness to salads. It is a great substitute for rice in most dishes as well, bringing a pleasant nutty flavor.
2. Bok Choy
This fun-to-say vegetable is dense with iron, which helps to spike up the ferreting levels in your blood and stop your hair from falling out. It is a favourite in mainland China, Philippines, Vietnam and other East-Asian regions, so is it any wonder that they all seem to have a great head of hair?
Next time you’re whipping up some juice or a smoothie, throw in some bok choy.
This sweet holiday season spice is great for improving circulation, which helps with bringing valuable oxygen and nutrients to your hair follicles. I personally love including cinnamon in my oatmeal and tea.
Eggs are full of vitamin B (biotin) that helps your hair grow and strengthens brittle fingernails. Eating eggs can also help lead to weight loss. Treat yourself to a protein-filled egg, boiled, poached or included in some swiss chard and cheddar quiche.
5. Greek Yogurt
Greek yogurt is rich in vitamin B5, which promotes blood flow to the scalp and hair growth. If you look at most greek statues, they all have a great head of hair. One could speculate that it’s because of all the greek yogurt they ate. This is a great reason to add greek yogurt to your diet – pick some out the next time you’re in need of yogurt.
This is one of my favourite fruits. It’s sweet and tangy and just brings a tropical vibe to your palette. This fruit is dense with vitamin C that helps prevent hair thinning and is also rich in copper, potassium, manganese, magnesium and phosphorus. Try it out in this delicious green smoothie:
- ½ cup guava, seeds removed
- 1 cup pineapple, cubed
- 1 banana, peeled
- ½ teaspoon fresh ginger, grated
- 2 cups fresh baby spinach
- 8 ounces filtered water
Directions: Place all ingredients into a blender and blend until smooth.
This fish has magnesium, a mineral that helps give your hair a natural shine. Keep in mind that the fish has very little oil and can quickly dry, so marinate it before cooking and don’t be afraid to bast it. I love my halibut best in a salad.
8. Lean Protein
Without sufficient protein, you not only lose muscle, but also your hair. Adding lean protein can support those sexy muscles that we all want while also helping replace the hair that falls out on a daily basis, maintaining thickness.
Some great sources of lean protein are quinoa, nut butters, oatmeal, black beans and sunflower seeds.
These small legumes are packed with iron, zinc, biotin, folic acid and protein. Your body needs folic acid in particular to restore and maintain the health of red blood cells and supply oxygen to the skin and scalp to help keep your hair healthy. Simply boil for salad fixings or add them to a soup.
Organ meats like liver are packed with iron. If you can stand the taste, your hair will thank you by growing into a glorious mane. One delicious way to consume liver is cooking it with onions, like in this recipe.
11. Nuts And Seeds
There is a reason why nuts and seeds are always recommended. Nuts like walnuts contain oils that increase the elastin in your hair. Elastin keeps your hair supple and prevents breakage. You can snack on nuts and seeds raw or add them to salads and stir-fries or make some homemade granola.
Need another reason to eat your oats? Oats are rich in fiber, zinc, iron and omega-3 fatty acids and polyunsaturated fatty acids that are great for hair growth. Oatmeal makes a great breakfast to get you going for the day – you can get your lean protein and cinnamon both in together!
This shellfish is a great source of zinc, which is an important mineral for overall health. Without enough zinc, you can experience hair loss everywhere, including your lashes and brows. Zinc supports the cells responsible for building hair. You can eat oysters raw or make them into crackers or a stew.
Salmon is always recommended as a great source of omega-3’s, which are anti-inflammatory and help relieve inflammation that causes hair-shedding. Omega-3’s also promote hair growth and keep your mane shiny and full. And if you need another reason to eat your salmon, salmon is one of the foods that helps the body process insulin more efficiently.
Try getting in your salmon by cooking it with some roasted asparagus or brussel sprouts.
15. Shiitake Mushrooms
A deficiency in copper can lead to premature graying. These fungi are rich in minerals and adding these mushrooms to your diet can help maintain your hair’s natural color. If you love asian food, steamy kitchen has a great recipe with shiitake mushrooms with step by step directions.
This superfood is packed with omega-3’s, magnesium, potassium, calcium and iron. Spinach is particularly rich in iron and contains sebum that acts as a natural conditioner for hair. Yet another reason to eat your spinach. It is a great additive to mix into your salads.
17. Sweet Potatoes
Sweet potatoes are known as a slow burning carb and are great for promoting weight loss, yet these potatoes have so much more to offer, such as a glorious mane full of luster. Sweet potatoes are packed with beta-carotene that helps prevent dry and dull hair. They also stimulate the glands in your scalp to make an oil fluid called sebum that helps keep your hair healthy.
I personally love mine grilled or boiled with a steamy cup of hot tea, yum!
Start helping your hair keep its magnificent shine by adding these foods into your diet today! Do you know any other foods or tips for helping maintain hair health? Please share with us in the comments below!
Kavata Kithome is an advocate for living your best life, full of health and longevity. While working closely with gym owners and personal trainers, she was able to sculpt a well-rounded view of fitness and understands how to incorporate it with a healthy balanced diet. She is a regular contributor to the One More Step Lifestyle brand.
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