lean red meat! Too little iron can cause baldness, according to research conducted at the Cleveland Clinic. Treating iron deficiency may help regrow hair. "People who have problems with hair loss or hair growth tend to be iron deficient—especially women," says dermatologist Paradi Mirmirani, who practices in Vallejo, Calif. Other iron-rich options include turkey, egg yolks, whole grains, dried fruit, and dried beans (soaked and cooked, of course).
egg! They're full of biotin, a B vitamin that promotes hair growth and overall scalp health. A deficiency can cause brittle hair. Other high-biotin foods include peanuts, almonds, wheat bran, salmon, low-fat cheese, and avocados.
banana! These contain the mineral silica, which is thought to improve hair thickness, Jackson Blatner says. Emphasizing foods rich in silica helps make hair stronger and more durable. (Although beer contains a good dose of silica, it's wise to stick to a moderate amount—one drink a day for women and two for men.)
dark green vegies! Load up on spinach, broccoli, and Swiss chard. They're packed withvitamins A and C, which help produce sebum—a scalp oil that works as a natural hair conditioner.
oysters! Opt for these to get plenty of zinc, a mineral that helps regulate the production of androgens. These are hormones that, in low levels, are associated with hair loss. People with low levels of androgens can also suffer from slow hair growth and dandruff. Adjusting your diet—and emphasizing zinc-rich choices like oysters, along with crab, clams, liver, lean beef, and wheat germ—will help stave off hair loss and keep your mane shiny and healthy.
sweet potatoes! These are packed with beta-carotene, which your body converts to vitamin A, a nourishing agent for your hair and skin. Vitamin A protects against dull hair and dry skin, a leading cause of dandruff. Other smart choices to get glowing hair and skin include carrots, kale, butternut squash, asparagus, and pumpkin.
beans! Legumes like kidney beans and lentils are great sources of iron-rich protein. Lentils, in particular, play a role in hair maintenance and support.
fruits and vegies! They're full of vitamin C, which helps your body absorb iron. Getting too little C makes hair dry and weak. The best sources? Broccoli, leafy greens, green peppers, citrus fruit, and strawberries.
omega 3 fatty acids They support scalp health; a deficiency can lead to dry scalp and dull hair. Good sources include salmon, sardines, herring, mackerel, flaxseeds, and walnuts.
healthy oils! No one wants dry, lackluster hair. But if your diet is too low in fat, that's what could happen. Healthy oils like olive, peanut, safflower, and sunflower can restore the shine. About a teaspoon a day will do the trick.
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