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Niche Topics (Beauty and Wellness) is all about a natural approach to healthy skin,
hair and nails. You'll love our collection of organic homemade beauty, bath and body
treatment recipes using natural ingredients that nourish, pamper, cleanse and protect
your skin. Harness the healing powers of Mother Nature's bounty to make yourself
Why spend huge amounts of money on overpriced hair growth products that promise newly
revitalized, impossibly luxuriant locks in weeks but only to disappoint in reality?
Growing strong healthy hair – no matter your age – on a tight beauty small budget
doesn’t have to be a a far-fetch dream. In fact, the secret to keeping your crowning
glory lusciously soft and shiny for as long as possible begins with what you eat.
Like skin cells, hair follicles require good nutrition to maintain its lustrous radiance
and vitality. If you don’t feed your mane with the essential nutrients it needs for
healthy growth, it can become dull-looking and fragile. In some severe cases of malnutrition,
hair can even fall out than normal. That is the reason why it is not uncommon for
people suffering from eating disorders like anorexia and bulimia to experience a
reversible type of hair loss known as telogen effluvium (TE).
Best Foods for Hair Growth
Healthy Hair Food No. 1: Salmon
Figure-conscious babes are aware that salmon is stuffed to the brim with high quality
protein and dietary iron but did you know the fish is also bestowed with generous
doses of healthy omega-3 fatty acids that play a huge role in the health and condition
of your hair?
If you are not consuming enough omega 3 fats on a regular basis, it will show up
as brittle hair and dry itchy scalp that produce embarrassing flakes. Losing more
than 100 strands a day may also indicate that you are not getting adequate supply
of omega 3 fats, which helps to strenghten hair roots naturally and prevent hair
Not only will these hair-friendly “good” fats promote hair growth and reduce inflammation,
they are also vital for locking moisture and adding lustrous shine to your hair cells
while keeping them supple. The Vitamin B, iron and protein in salmon also bring significant
benefits to hair health, leaving you with amazingly vibrant and shiny tresses that
are more resistant to breakage as well.
If fishy-tasting salmon doesn’t excite your tastebuds, then put oily fish such as
sardines, tuna or mackerel on your grocery list. Chia seeds, flax seeds, soybeans
and walnuts are good choices for those looking for vegetarian sources of omega-3s.
Alternatively, consider krill oil supplements which are more potent than fish oil
in terms of antioxidant content. They are worth every penny spent, considering the
fact that they offer great heart protection benefits too.
Healthy Hair Food No. 2 : Dark Green Vegetables
Sebum produced by the sebaceous glands (which are connected to hair follicles) acts
as a natural conditioner to keep hair shiny and moisturized. This oily substance
also helps your scalp to retain moisture, thereby preventing dandruff.
Dark green vegetables such as spinach, watercress, Swiss chard, broccoli and asparagus
are bountiful in Vitamin A and C, both of which are required by your body to secrete
I am partcularly fond of asparagus because the vegetable is also an excellent source
of silica (a form of silicon), which makes hair shiny and smooth in addition to stimulating
hair production. Plus it has Vitamin E, shown to encourage hair growth while keeping
hair looking lively and young.
If you are concerned with hair loss or looking to repair damaged hair, load up on
Swiss chard. It contains high levels of biotin and will help promote hair growth
as well as strengthening hair weakened by heat styling and chemicals in hair dyes.
Healthy Hair Food No. 3: Beans
Legumes such as kidney beans and lentils provide good amounts of protein, iron, zinc
and biotin to promote hair growth. Biotin deficiency, though uncommon, can result
in listless brittle hair.
Healthy Hair Food No. 4: Nuts
Selenium is an essential mineral for good scalp health. While Brazil nuts are one
of nature’s best sources of selenium, walnuts have alpha-linolenic acid, an omega
3 fatty acid that may help condition your hair.
Nuts including cashews, pecans, and almonds also have zinc in them. A zinc deficiency
can lead to hair shedding and very slow hair regrowth.
Go for unsalted nuts as too much salt (sodium) in the diet can actually stop hair
from growing optimally and increase the likelihood of “hair dropping” problem.
Healthy Hair Food No. 5: Oysters
The reason behind oysters’ aphrodisiac and hair-boosting abilities is zinc, a powerful
antioxidant. Without sufficient zinc in your diet, hair shafts can get weakened and
break off easily.
Zinc benefits hair in numerous ways, such as preventing dandruff, repairing damaged
hair cells and speeding up cell renewal for healthy young-looking locks. It also
maintains sebum production, thus reducing your risk for hair fall. However, excessive
zinc in your system can hamper the absorption of other hair-enhancing minerals like
copper, iron, magnesium and manganese, which may trigger hair loss.
Other than getting zinc from oysters, you can also find zinc in a wide variety of
foods such as whole grains and nuts, sunflower seeds, lamb and beef.
Beef also offers B Vitamins and iron which are necessary for healthy hair. Poor hair
growth or hair loss can indicate a deficiency in iron or Vitamin C.
Healthy Hair Food No. 6: Eggs
Eggs are the best sources of protein and the perfect meat-protein substitutes for
vegetarians. Protein not only keeps your tresses strong and glossy, it can also help
hair to grow faster. A protein deficiency can contribute to hair loss.
Additionally, eggs provide your body with biotin and Vitamin B12, which are crucial
nutrients for growing strong healthy hair.
Healthy Hair Food No. 7: Low-fat diary products
Calcium which is abundant in soybeans and low-fat dairy products like milk, yogurt
and kefir is often associated with strong bone health, but the mineral is also great
for improving hair growth naturally.
Moreover, both yogurt and kefir also contain whey and casein, which are high-quality
protein sources that will stimulate hair follicles to increase growth.
Healthy Hair Food No. 8: Water
Water is critical in eliminating toxins that can cause your hair to appear lifeless
and feel like straw. To have silky smooth “touch me” locks, aim for 8 to 10 glasses
of fluids per day. You may want to add some lemon or lime slices to plain water for
a bit of refreshing flavor.
Besides, lemon has natural astringent and antibacterial properties to slow down sebum
production in the scalp to fight greasy and oily hair.
Aside from consuming a well balanced diet that contains a myriad of hair-boosting
nutrients to support optimum hair health, the other important aspect of healthy hair
growth is make sure you adopt an overall healthy lifestyle. By that, I am referring
to a tobacco-free living that is also free from undue stress and worry.
Cigarette smoking not only has negative health consequences such as increased risk
of coronary heart disease and stroke, research has also linked it to hair loss and
premature graying. Smoking inhibits the flow of oxygen and vital nutrients to the
scalp, resulting in undernourished weak hair strands that tend to break off easily
and may therefore lead to thinning hair in the long run. In some cases, heavy smoking
also induce early balding in men and women who are genetically predisposed to hair
loss (androgenic alopecia).
Furthermore, tobacco toxins in smoke can damage hair follicles and slow the production
of melanin, which is the pigment gives your hair its natural color.
What’s even more horrifying is, once hair starts to loose color and turn gray or
white, it can take on an unattractive dull yellow tinge due to the tar and nicotine
found in cigarettes.
Stress overload is the other big culprit that cause hair to go gray at a young age.
If you find yourself facing a difficult time dealing with never-ending stream of
everyday challenges, there is a very high chance that you may have salt-and-pepper
hair sooner than your peers – before your 30th birthday.
Interestingly, both Ayurveda (traditional Indian medicine) and TCM (traditional Chinese
medicine) practitioners believe that chronic emotional stress – sorrow, shock as
well as anxiety – can lower the amount of melanocytes being produced, and hence may
cause premature graying hair in young people.
In addition, stress can raise the levels of androgen (a male sex hormone) in your
blood which can be a contributing factor in some types of hair loss.
To keep stress levels down and refresh your spirit, try mediation or deep breathing
techniques. Better yet, do some exercise like walking or gentle yoga as they will
help keep your circulatory system in tip-top condition. Without good blood circulation
to the scalp, essential nutrients cannot be transported to the hair follicles and
thus may hinder your hair’s potential to grow runway worthy thick and glossy locks.