We live in a time when there is an app or a gadget to plug every gap in our lives. Faced with a problem, we can download the solution or purchase it with a click of the mouse. Perhaps it’s that modern mindset that leads so many of us to think that hair loss can be tackled in the same way. Our immediate response to hair fall or thinning is to go online and search for a new shampoo, a better conditioner, a volumizing hairspray.
The truth is, there is no ‘magic bullet’ product that will easily resolve the problem of hair loss or thinning. Good quality hair products undoubtedly help, but they are no substitute for understanding the underlying cause of your hair loss. Often, that can be a lifestyle issue. More specifically, it can be directly related to the food you choose to eat. Read on to discover how your diet affects your hair for good or ill!
Reasons for Hair Loss
There are many factors at play when it comes to hair loss. These include genetics, general health, age, haircare habits (including styling, tools and products) and diet. In recent years, the link between nutrient deficiency and hair loss has been explored by various studies; one such study can be seen here.
An interesting point to emerge from this body of research is the revelation that nutrient deficiency isn’t just about not getting enough of the right vitamins, proteins and minerals. Often, it can result from getting too much of them. Vitamin A, for example, is important for our cell growth, immune function and vision. Too much of it, however, can lead to Vitamin A toxicity, which is known to cause hair loss.
Similarly, the trace element Selenium is an essential nutrient for many of our cell functions. Taken to excess, though, it can lead to symptoms like bad breath, fatigue, irritability and hair loss.
It should be stressed that most toxicity cases arise because of supplement use rather than overeating. It’s a reminder of the importance of seeking medical advice before embarking on a course of supplements.
Foods to Eat
More commonly, hair loss occurs when an individual isn’t getting enough of the nutrients needed to maintain a healthy head of hair. Research has shown, for example, that deficiencies in vitamins B12 and D, biotin, riboflavin and iron are associated with hair loss.
Since most of us don’t make a habit of poring over food labels while we’re standing in the supermarket, the best way to ensure we’re getting enough of these micronutrients is to eat the right foods. Here’s a short list of some of the things we should eat regularly. It’s by no means exclusive.
- Eggs are stuffed full of minerals, proteins and B-complex vitamins. These nutrients stimulate hair growth and help protect the roots of your hair. Egg yokes are also good sources of biotin which greatly improves the elasticity of your locks.
- Meat proteins are also thought to help strengthen and repair your hair. Red meat is rich in iron, an essential mineral for the red blood cells that carry oxygen and nutrients to the scalp. Iron deficiency is thought to be one of the causes of hair loss.
- Fish such as mackerel, salmon and herring have long been touted for the benefits they bring to our hearts and general health. This is due, in no small measure, to their high omega-3 fatty acid content. Not only is this great for cardiac health, but it has also been linked by some studies to reduced hair loss, though conclusive evidence is still lacking.
- Avocados are positively bouncing with healthy fats. An average-sized avocado also provides up to 28% of an individual’s daily Vitamin E requirement. The antioxidant properties of Vitamin E enable it to protect the scalp from free radical damage and oxidative stress, thus reducing hair loss due to poor quality hair and damaged hair follicles.
- Nuts, seeds and beans are all a great source of zinc. They also provide B and E vitamins, fatty acids and selenium. A deficiency of these nutrients has been linked to hair loss. Eating a wide variety of nuts, seeds and beans should guarantee that you get enough nutrients to prevent this from happening. Apart from that, they provide a tasty snack or meal!
Hopefully, this article has provided you with food for thought, if you’ll excuse the pun! Good nutrition is such an important factor in our general health that it should come as no surprise to discover it’s vital to the condition of our hair, too. Eating the right foods supports the growth of strong, healthy hair. Get that right first before you start searching for magic bullet hair products!
If you’re concerned about hair loss, Vinci Hair Clinic is here to help. We offer a free, no-obligation consultation to all our new clients. You can get expert hair advice from top professionals without committing to anything. All you need to do is get in touch and book your appointment!