Many people consider thick, smooth hair to be a sign of health and beauty.
Like any other part of the body, hair needs many nutrients to grow (1).
In fact, nutritional deficiencies also lead to hair loss.
Although factors such as age, genetics and hormones affect hair growth, absorption of optimal nutrients is key.
Here are 5 vitamins and 3 nutrients that are important for hair growth.
1. Vitamin A
Vitamin A is essential for the development of all cells in the body including hair - the fastest growing tissue in the human body.
Vitamin A also helps the skin glands create a slime called . Sebum moisturizes the scalp and keeps hair healthy .
Diets that lack vitamin A can lead to a number of problems, including hair loss .
Although vitamin A supplementation is important, too much supplementation can be dangerous. Studies show that excess vitamin A also leads to hair loss .
Sweet potatoes, carrots, pumpkins, spinach and kale have high levels of beta-carotene, which converts to vitamin A.
Vitamin A is also found in animal products such as milk, eggs and yogurt. Cod liver oil is a premium source of vitamin A.
Conclude: Hair needs vitamin A to retain moisture and grow. Good sources of vitamin A include sweet potatoes, carrots, spinach, kale and some animal foods.
2. Vitamin B group
One of the good vitamins for the development of the best-known hair is a B-type vitamin called biotin.
Studies show that biotin deficiency can lead to hair loss in humans .
Although biotin is used as an alternative method to treat hair loss, this method has also yielded positive results.
However, biotin deficiency is rare because it is a component of many foods.
There is not much information available about whether biotin is really effective for hair growth in healthy people.
Other group B vitamins help create red blood cells, transport oxygen and nutrients to the scalp and hair follicles. These processes are very important for hair growth.
You can provide B group vitamins from a variety of foods, including whole grains, almonds, meat, fish, seafood and dark green vegetables.
In addition, animal foods are the only source of vitamin B12. So whether you're on a vegan or vegan diet, consider adding meat.
Conclude: B-group vitamins help bring oxygen and nutrients to the scalp, helping to grow hair. Whole grains, meat, seafood and dark green vegetables are rich sources of vitamin B.
3. Vitamin C
Free radical damage can interfere with the development and aging of your hair.
Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant that helps protect and fight oxidative imbalances caused by free radicals (6).
In addition, the body also needs vitamin C to create a protein called collagen - an important component in hair structure.
Vitamin C also helps the body absorb iron and minerals necessary for hair growth.
Strawberries, peppers, guava and citrus fruits are excellent sources of vitamin C.
Conclude: Vitamin C is essential for collagen production and may help prevent hair aging. Vitamin C can be added from peppers, citrus fruits and strawberries.
4. Vitamin D
Short vitamin D can cause raalopecia, a term for alopecia .
The study also showed that vitamin D can help create new follicles - tiny holes for hair to grow in the scalp .
Vitamin D is thought to play a role in hair production, but most studies focus on vitamin D receptors and the true role of vitamin D in hair growth is unknown.
Most of us still don't have enough vitamin D and if you want to increase your vitamin D levels it is still not too late.
Your body produces vitamin D through direct sunlight exposure. Good sources of vitamin D include fatty fish, cod liver oil, some mushrooms and fortified foods.
Conclude: Although the actual role of vitamin D in hair growth is unknown, the lack of this substance also causes a form of hair loss. You can increase vitamin D content through exposure to the sun or by eating certain foods.
5. Vitamin E
Similar to vitamin C, vitamin E is an antioxidant that can prevent oxidative imbalance.
In one study, hair of people with hair loss developed 34.5% after taking vitamin E for 8 months .
The placebo supplement group increased by only 0.1% .
Sunflower seeds, almonds, spinach and avocado are good sources of vitamin E.
Conclude : Vitamin E helps prevent oxidative imbalance and enhances hair growth. Diets including sunflower seeds, almonds, spinach and avocados will provide vitamin E to the body.
Iron helps red blood cells transport oxygen to the client cells. This makes it an important mineral for many body activities, including hair growth.
Iron deficiency causes anemia, and is a major cause of hair loss, especially in women .
Foods high in iron include mussels, oysters, eggs, red meat, spinach and lentils.
Conclude: Iron deficiency is a major cause of hair loss, especially in women. Mussels, oysters, eggs, red meat, spinach and lentils are good sources of iron.
Zinc plays an important role in hair growth and repair. It also helps maintain the normal functioning of oil glands around hair follicles.
Hair loss is a common symptom of zinc deficiency .
Studies show that zinc supplements reduce hair loss caused by zinc deficiency .
However, according to some unfounded reports, overdose supplementation may also lead to hair loss.
Therefore, it is best to supplement zinc from daily foods. Foods high in zinc include oysters, beef, spinach, wheat germ, pumpkin seeds and lentils.
Conclude: Zinc minerals can improve hair growth in people who lack this substance. Zinc is found in oysters, beef and pumpkin seeds.
The hair is shaped almost completely the protein . Eating well is important for hair growth.
Animal studies show that protein deficiency can reduce hair growth, even lead to hair loss .
However, the actual protein deficiency is very rare in Western countries.
Conclude: Adequate protein supply is important for hair growth, although today there is a rare shortage of protein in Western countries.
Should I use functional foods for hair?
Food is a good source of vitamins needed for hair growth.
However, if you can't get enough of your diet, supplements may be helpful.
According to the study, supplements work best in people who are deficient in substances .
Moreover, large doses of vitamins and minerals can have a bad effect if you have provided enough. Therefore, you should see your doctor to determine if you are deficient.
Finally, the best way to get enough nutrients is through a balanced diet with fresh and nutritious foods.