We naturally lose hair every day, but as we age the amount of hair loss increases. Hair loss that does not re-grow is known as alopecia. The causes of alopecia are circulatory problems, hormonal imbalances or other disease processes. The problem can also be medication related, such as steroid use, bacterial infections, vitamin deficiencies and hair processing like coloring. Genetics also play a role. Giving your scalp and hair follicles the proper nutrition and vitamins can help relieve hair loss and possibly even help hair to re-grow.
Vitamin A regulates retinoic acid at the level of the hair follicle. This helps hair to grow and can also be good for the skin. Vitamin A can be taken as a supplement, in foods or rubbed into the scalp and hair in liquid form.
For vitamin A, eat foods such as carrots, sweet potatoes, paprika, butternut squash, apricots and cantelope.
All of the B vitamins help the body with increased levels of stress. Stress can cause hair loss, so vitamin B needs to be at optimal levels during stressful times. It is important to take all the B vitamins together in a complex for proper absorption.
Vitamin C is not manufactured by the body and it is a crucial part of iron absorption. Absorbing iron is necessary to help the hair grow properly. It also helps in the formation of certain proteins that help build hair.
It is important to get enough vitamin C through the diet by eating foods such as citrus fruits, broccoli, green peppers, red peppers, green leafy vegetables, sweet potatoes, tomatoes and winter squash.
Vitamin D is another nutrient that is not made by our body. We need to get it from either food or adequate amounts of sunlight. Vitamin is important for hair growth and can stimulate the hair follicles to grow new hair.
Vitamin D can be obtained by eating foods including dairy products, fish, cod liver oil, fortified cereals, oysters, eggs and mushrooms.
Vitamin E increases the blood flow to the scalp by causing new blood capillaries to form and bring nourishment to the scalp. This helps to increase the growth of new hair.
Foods that are high in vitamin E are nuts, tropical fruits (papaya, kiwi), red bell peppers, whole wheat and vegetable oils.
Iron-Rich protein serves two purposes for the hair. Protein helps build up keratin levels which helps hair grow stronger and faster. Iron from protein meats is better for the body to absorb over the iron from vegetarian sources.
The top foods for iron-rich protein are fish, lean beef, turkey, chicken, egg yolks, lamb and pork. The moderate iron-protein foods are soybeans, lentils, tofu, tempeh, black eyed peas, garbanzo and kidney beans.
Beta carotene is the precursor to vitamin A. Your hair needs vitamin A to ensure healthy growth and a healthy appearance. Too little vitamin A can make for dry hair and flaky scalp.
The best way is to eat foods rich in beta carotene such as pumpkin, carrots, butternut squash, green leafy vegetables, watermelon, cherries, mangoes, tomatoes and apricots. You can also take a vitamin A supplement, but this should be in the form of retinol. Food sources are always the best sources for this vitamin.
Zinc feeds the oil glands near the follicles, which in turns keeps the hair nourished and supple. Not enough zinc in your diet will cause your hair to become dry and brittle and your scalp will flake. Too little zinc can also contribute to hair loss.
Foods containing zinc are wheat germ, chicken without skin, turkey, any kind of beans, peanuts and peanut butter, pecans, sunflower products, oysters, mussels, pumpkin seeds and yogurt.
These are a healthy essential oil that can help reduce hair loss and encourage growth. Our bodies do not make Omega-3 and they can be obtained in salmon, mackerel, sardines, flaxseeds and their oil and walnuts.
Hair is made from protein and lysine is an essential part of protein that benefits hair production. Animal proteins have the most lysine like chicken, beef and eggs. You can also supplement lysine at a dosage of 500mg up to 1000mg a day.