fruits that make your hair grow should not be ignored. Researchers have found fruits which possess natural nutrients that can help sustain long, thick and healthy hair growth. Those fruits which she features in this article can also help strengthen nails, aid in treating scalp problems, increase strength and flexibility to avoid hair loss or breakage.
These 13 foods will help make your hair grow
Desperate for long, lucious locks? We’ve all had the feeling our hair is taking forever to grow out. Surely there must be something you can do to help your hair grow faster? Well, according to dietician Ro Huntriss, there is a range of foods which contain specific vitamins and minerals to help your hair grow.
From protein-rich meals to oily fish, certain kinds of nuts and specific fruit and veg, these foods are rich in the key nutrients you need for a healthier head of hair. Treat yourself to that extra portion of sweet potato fries! – it’s all in the name of beauty after all. Here are 16 healthy foods that improve hair growth…
This is not a false alarm! As if you needed another reason to indulge – once again – in a cheeky Nando’s we’re here to share that as well as being delicious, chicken can also help promote hair growth. Ro reveals: “Chicken or other high protein foods are essential for healthy hair and hair growth. Protein acts as the building blocks to all of our cells, including the cells in our hair, and poor protein intake has been linked to hair loss.” You can thank us later.
How do you like your eggs in the morning? It doesn’t matter. Scrambled, poached or even fried, as long as these bad boys are in your meal plan they can actively promote hair growth. Eggs offer a range of health benefits but for those looking to elongate their locks, incorporating them into your diet could be key. They’re not only high in protein but also biotin meaning you can say goodbye to dry, dull locks whilst simultaneously tucking into your poached egg & avo on toast.
We all have that one friend who just can’t get enough of Sardines, they’ll have them alone, on their toast and even as a pizza topping but *plot twist* they might actually be on to something. Ro says: “Sardines and other oily fish are the main dietary source of omega-3 fatty acids which act as anti-inflammatory foods. Oily fish can help to prevent dryness and help to promote the production of oils to the scalp.”
4. Iron-rich cereals
We’re here to tell you to never feel ashamed about that fourth bowl of cereal you may have accidentally poured – and eaten, twice. “Many breakfast cereals are fortified with iron. Iron is a key mineral that helps to promote a healthy blood supply and low iron levels have also been linked to hair loss. Be sure to check on the label that your cereal is iron-fortified.” So knock back those Rice Krispies, your hair will thank you for it!
Millenials do not fear, those avocado-on-toast brunches may have been doing you more good than you thought. Avocado, with all it’s Vitamin E, is a powerhouse for hair growth as this compound improves blood circulation and therefore helps the hair follicles work more efficiently. Just another reason brunch is a must.
Although Popeye may not be the best spokesperson for this one – being bald n’ all – the famous cartoon character was definitely on to something with his spinach obsession. Spinach is loaded with nutrients from folate to iron and vitamins A & C, all which can promote hair growth. So, although spinach may not cause your biceps to grow at a rapid rate, your hair is a different story!
A popular bagel filling, a Christmas staple, a regular in your healthy meal plan and now…the answer to hair growth? Yep. This fish is full of goodness and especially if you want to encourage hair growth. It contains proteins, Vitamin D, Omega-three fatty acids and many more things that stimulate hair production. Just another reason to get your fix!
8. Vitamin D supplement
Unfortunately, not all of us live in sunny, hot climates where there is plenty of Vitamin D to go around. Luckily there are Vitamin D supplements out there that can help give us the same nutrients and as an added bonus these supplements can ALSO help our hair to grow. “Research suggests that Vitamin D can help to keep hair follicles healthy. It is very difficult to get sufficient Vitamin D from the foods we eat, therefore a Vitamin D supplement is advisable to ensure you get sufficient Vitamin D to protect you and your hair.
Good old Quinoa, it took off as the King of clean-eating superfoods a few years ago and it seems since its powers have seen no bounds. Amongst its long list of health benefits, Quinoa can also help promote the growth of your long luscious locks. “This is a whole grain and is a source of zinc. Zinc helps with maintenance and growth of hair and deficiencies of this mineral have been linked to brittle hair.” Now that’s what we call wellness and self-love!
10. Sunflower seeds
You may know them as a tasty ingredient used to sprinkle on the top of your porridge in the morning but these tasty little seeds are also the magic ingredient to long luscious hair. “These are one of the best dietary sources of Vitamin E, which is another great antioxidant. Not only does Vitamin E protect our cells from damage but it has also been linked to the prevention of hair loss and skin dryness.”
Not only does this tasty citrus fruit provide us with vitamins C, A and antioxidants, Oranges can also help promote hair growth. “Oranges are a great source of Vitamin C. Vitamin C helps the absorption of iron so having this or orange juice alongside your fortified breakfast cereal will help the absorption of your iron.” There’s a reason Orange Juice is THE iconic breakfast drink of choice.
12. Sweet potatoes
What did we ever do without sweet potatoes? Think sweet potatoes fries, mash, baked potatoes and the superfood is even a delicious baking ingredient. However, people may not know that sweet vegetable also boosts hair growth. “Sweet potatoes contain beta-carotene which, once consumed, is converted into Vitamin A. This vitamin helps the skin to make sebum which is oily and helps to promote a healthy scalp.”
13. Brazil nuts
We’re all aware of the recent nut butter craze – there’s even a brazil nut butter – but it may not just be a random craze after all. Brazil nuts are said to help keep your scalp healthy and therefore promote hair growth. “Brazil nuts are a good dietary source of selenium, which is a powerful antioxidant which helps to keep our body and cells healthy, including maintaining a healthy scalp.”
Nutrients and Foods for Hair Growth
We all spend valuable time and money caring for our hair by buying products to make it grow longer and appear healthy. One of the easiest ways to ensure our hair is in prime condition is by supplying our body with the nutrients it needs through diet. Below is a guide to explain the top foods for hair growth.
What Causes Hair to Grow Faster?
Many factors contribute to the growth and maintenance of hair such as genetics, hormones, diet, age, stress, and hair care practices. On average, your hair will grow half an inch every month.
However, hair can also grow at different speeds depending on the time of year. In summer, hair tends to grow faster than in winter. Surprisingly, on average, men’s hair actually grows faster than women’s.
Pregnancy will speed up the process of hair growth for females. In addition, hair grows fastest between the ages of 15 to the late 20’s. Factors such as illness, over-styling, or poor diet can slow down hair growth.
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What Nutrients Can Lead to Faster Hair Growth?
The body does not prioritise providing nutrients to the scalp over other tissues because it is not a vital organ. Therefore, it’s important to make sure your body has an adequate supply of nourishment in order to ensure healthy hair.
Some pursuing a “healthy diet” may not know they are limiting certain nutrients needed to grow hair. Below are some of the most common elements needed to promote hair growth:
- Protein: Hair follicles are primarily made of protein, making this a valuable resource for hair growth.
- Iron: When iron is low, it can reduce the blood flow to hair follicles and cause damage to the hair.
- Vitamin C: This vitamin is a powerful antioxidant that reduces damage caused by free radicals. Vitamin C also helps the absorption of iron.
- Omega 3: Omega-3 is important for providing the oils that maintain a hydrated scalp and hair.
- Vitamin A: Is a component of sebum, a substance made by the sebaceous glands to condition and nourish hair.
- Zinc: A lack of zinc leads to hair loss, so it is important to keep an adequate supply to promote hair growth
- Vitamin E: This is an antioxidant similar to vitamin A and prevents damage caused by the sun.
- Biotin: Biotin improves the infrastructure of keratin, a vital component of the protein in hair.
While it’s important to recognise what nutrients are effective in stimulating hair growth, it is most important to know what foods contain these nutrients.
What are the Foods that Help Hair Growth?
- Eggs: Just one egg includes a good source of protein along with key nutrients like vitamins A, D and B12 (biotin). In order to consume the most vitamin D, be sure to include the yolk. B vitamins can also be found in Greek yogurt.
- Spinach: This leafy green is loaded with biotin, iron, magnesium, and vitamin C making it great for hair health. Kale is another leafy green vegetable that gives very similar benefits to spinach. Another great source of iron is red meat.
- Sweet potatoes: Contain an element called beta-carotene, which later transforms into vitamin A. In addition, sweet potatoes supply biotin and are high in fibre.
- Fruits: Packed with antioxidants and other essential vitamins needed for effective hair growth. Citrus fruits such as oranges, lemons, and limes are rich in vitamin C. Bananas help to strengthen hair. This fruit has a mineral called silica, which helps with strengthening hair. Berries also contain antioxidants, reducing the effects of damage on hair.
- Salmon: This fatty fish provides protein, vitamin D, and omega-3 acids, making it an ideal choice for hair growth along with other health benefits for your body. In addition, omega-3s also help to reduce inflammation. For those on a vegan or vegetarian diet, chia seeds are also a good source of omega-3.
- Whole grains: An excellent source of fibre, it also contains beneficial elements such as biotin, iron, zinc, and B vitamins. If the whole grain includes flax seeds, this food contains polyunsaturated healthy fats to help hydrate the scalp.
- Oysters: Contain a substantial amount of zinc. Zinc blocks the production of DHT, an androgen that causes follicle minimisation on the scalp, leading to hair loss.
Avoid processed foods at all costs
The most important aspect of a diet focused on hair growth is the consumption of whole foods over processed foods. Most whole foods, such as vegetables, are packed with valuable vitamins and minerals that don’t include damaging additives that can contribute to hair thinning.
If you find it difficult to obtain the nutrients you need through diet alone, it can be beneficial to take vitamins or supplements. In addition to consuming the right foods, it’s also important to make sure you are staying hydrated by drinking enough water every day.
Hair follicles rapidly regenerate, as they are the fastest-growing tissue in the body. Every chemical process in the body requires water, especially the metabolism of new cells. Proper hydration allows the body to generate the cells needed for new hair growth.
Natural Masks for Hair Growth
Nutrients do not always have to be consumed through food in order to demonstrate benefits for hair growth. There are a variety of natural masks that allow the scalp and hair to directly absorb substances of nourishment:
Blend 1 to 2 bananas with egg, avocado, coconut, or honey. Apply to your hair and leave on for 10 to 15 minutes before rinsing.
Benefits: reduces frizz and dandruff, promotes hair growth
Mix milk with honey, banana, or egg. Leave on hair for 20 to 40 minutes before rinsing.
Benefits: proteins for hair growth, makes hair softer and adds shine
Mix equal parts lemon juice and conditioner or add lemon juice to a cup of water. Let it sit on the hair for 2 to 3 minutes before rinsing.
Benefits: reduces dandruff, promotes hair growth
6 Foods That Will Make Your Natural Hair Grow Faster
While you might not feel it just yet, the spring season is just a few weeks away. That means warmer weather, blooming flowers, singing birds—and time to create a hair regimen that will keep your tresses as beautiful as ever. Although there are tons of commercial products on the market that will make your curls—pun intended—spring up, there are also some in-season foods during the springtime that you should stock up on. Foods that are delicious, affordable and have a real knack for keeping hair strong and healthy, right into the summer.
It’s kind of crazy that, something so sweet, can actually be really good for you. But such is the case with strawberries. This fruit is one that is super high in antioxidants like Vitamin C as well as potassium, folate and manganese. Fiber and protein are in strawberries too. Health-wise, they are the kind of fruit that regulates your blood sugar levels, protects your heart and provides relief from arthritis-related symptoms. Also, the salicylic acid, alpha hydroxy acid and ellagic acid that’s in strawberries can help to prevent hyperpigmentation in your skin, as its anthocyanins and antioxidant properties will keep free radicals at bay. Although magnesium, omega 3 fatty acids and copper are not in super high amounts in this particular fruit, it’s enough to nourish your hair follicles while Vitamin C removes excess sebum from your scalp that could clog your follicles and hinder healthy hair growth.
How to Use Strawberries: If you want to remove excess build-up from your hair without drying it out in the process, all you need to do is mash up five strawberries with two tablespoons of plain yogurt and a teaspoon of honey. Apply the mask to your hair, right after washing it. Let it penetrate your hair shaft for 15-20 minutes. Then rinse and deep condition your tresses.
2. Chayote Squash
Chayote Squash is the kind of squash that is in peak freshness during the spring. It has protein, fiber, vitamins B6, B9, C and K, as well as copper, zinc, magnesium, fiber and manganese in it (for starters). As for overall health benefits go, chayote squash contains antioxidants that reduce body inflammation, folate to keep your pregnancy healthy and nutrients to delay the signs of aging. It’s great for your hair because the combination of the nutrients can delay greying, reduce breakage and strengthen your strands.
How to Use Chayote Squash: Here at Naturally Curly, we’re super fond of squash. So much, in fact, what we wrote an entire feature on winter squash. Check out “Try Winter Squash For Better Length Retention” for a recipe that is equally as interchangeable with chayote squash.
Mint is an herb that is rich in all kinds of nutrients. It contains iron, folate, manganese and Vitamin A, and is able to do everything from improve irritable bowel syndrome and relieve cold symptoms to strengthen your brain function. The reason why you should consider using it on your scalp and hair is because the menthol in mint is great at increasing blood circulation to your hair follicles, plus its antimicrobial and antifungal properties can keep dandruff-causing fungus at bay. Mint is also a great source of carotene and antioxidants; both work together to provide your follicles with the nutrients that they need in order for your hair to stay healthy and strong.
How to Use Mint: Crush 5-10 mint leaves together. Add a tablespoon of fresh lemon juice and a teaspoon of melted coconut oil. Apply it to your freshly washed scalp. Let it sit for an hour and then rinse thoroughly. It will invigorate your scalp while removing unnecessary fungi and dandruff flakes too.
Kiwi might be tiny, but it makes a really big difference. Thanks to vitamins A, C, B6, B12 and E, along with potassium, calcium, iron and magnesium, kiwi has the ability to boost your immune system, regulate your blood pressure, reduce oxidative stress, protect your vision and even help you to sleep soundly. Something else that kiwi has in it is zinc. Our hair needs lots of that in order to prevent dandruff, hair loss and strengthen our tresses. Eating and applying kiwi can only benefit your hair, long-term.
How to Use Kiwi: One way to use kiwi in order to prevent hair premature greying while strengthening your locks in the process is to combine a tablespoon of fresh kiwi pulp with a teaspoon of Vitamin E and a teaspoon of henna. Apply the solution to your hair and scalp. Put on a plastic bag and let it sit for an hour. Then shampoo, condition and style as usual.
If there’s one reason to get hype about spring’s return, it’s because mangoes tend to be at their peak of freshness. Not only do they taste amazing, but they are high in vitamins A, B6, C, E as well as fiber, potassium, folate, calcium and zinc. When it comes to this particular fruit’s health benefits, mangoes are able to lower cholesterol, promote eye and gut health, manage diabetes, treat anemia and delay the physical signs of aging. Mangoes are the perfect “hair fruit” because it contains about 83 percent water; that, along with the E and zinc that is in them, makes mangoes a wonderful ingredient for hair conditioners and moisturizers.
How to Use Mangoes: Are you looking for relief from dry brittle hair, we’ve totally got you. Check out our article, “DIY Mango Mask and Butter for Dry Hair” for a recipe that will provide your hair with more moisture than ever.
6. Bee Pollen
When you really stop to think about it, it makes perfect sense that bee pollen would be in season during the spring season since bees are back in abundance during that time of year. Bee pollen is high in protein, amino acids, flavonoids, phosphorus, potassium and selenium. Because of this, it’s able to prevent liver toxicity, strengthen immunity, relieve stress, reduce menopausal symptoms and promote overall healing. Something else that’s awesome about bee pollen is it has L‑Cysteine in it; it’s an amino acid that is full of sulfur which is something that our hair needs in order to grow without breaking. The vitamins A and E that’s in the pollen can keep your hair moisturized too.
How to Use Bee Pollen: If you want an all-natural way to treat hair loss, add a tablespoon of bee pollen to your shampoo. You should see results in as little as a month if you do.