Although it’s true that men are more likely to lose hair because of pattern baldness, thinning hair and hair loss can also be very common in women too. The causes of hair loss are many and can range from temporary problems, like vitamin deficiencies or stress, to more complex issues including an individual’s hereditary or underlying health issues.
In many cases, a simple change in diet can be helpful in slowing hair loss, making hair thicker and healthier. Much like the skin, the condition of your hair can be an outward sign of inner health.
Even though there’s no better time to indulge than over Christmas, we’re taking a look at what foods you can introduce to your diet, to help keep your hair as healthy and as full as possible.
Low levels of protein can result in dry, weak hair, with extremely low levels even stunting hair growth and leading to hair loss. After all, our hair is made up of keratin – a protein that makes up the majority of the scalp – so to stimulate hair growth, it’s important to keep the hair follicles strong, with a regular intake of lean meats. This includes red meat, chicken and turkey…what perfect timing! For vegetarians, lentils and beans, including kidney beans, split peas and soybeans, are the best sources of protein.
As well as being another fantastic source of protein, oily fish like salmon, herring and mackerel are packed full of B vitamins, which help to promote hair growth. The omega 3 that can be found in oily fish is an important fat that our body can’t make itself, so must be obtained through our diet. Omega 3, which is also found in avocados, keeps our hair hydrated, and a lack of it can result in a dry and flaky scalp.
Green leafy vegetables
Green, leafy vegetables are not only easy to add to your Christmas dinner, but they’re also full of beneficial nutrients for the hair. Vitamins A and C aid in the production of sebum, an oily substance created by hair follicles to keep the hair naturally conditioned, and iron assists in the production of red blood cells that transport oxygen to the scalp. Kale, broccoli, lettuce and spinach are best, but other vegetables like bell peppers, carrots and asparagus can all assist with hair growth.
Adding fresh fruits that are rich in vitamins A, C and E, to your diet is also another easy way to help keep your hair in great condition. For example, oranges, blueberries, limes and kiwis are a strong source of vitamin C – known for it’s antioxidant properties and assistance in producing collagen. This is an essential protein which strengthens the blood vessels that support hair shafts. A lack of these vitamins can result in hair being brittle and weak.
Nuts and seeds
Not only are nuts easy to snack on, they’re full of vital vitamins and minerals. Zinc, in particular, is a mineral that regulates the production of androgens and low levels of androgen have been associated with stunted hair growth and dandruff. Vitamin E, which is present in nuts and seeds, protects the hair from DNA damage and UV rays, keeping it as healthy as possible.
Finally, as it’s the festive season, we couldn’t forget cinnamon, which is commonly used to help treat hair problems including dandruff, hair thinning and hair fall. Cinnamon improves circulation, which helps bring oxygen and nutrients to your hair follicles. Easily introduce this to your diet by sprinkling it in your coffee or on your porridge in the morning.
If you’re worried about hair loss, and want to find out more about what we can do for you, book a free consultation with our team.