A long lustrous hair is a part of your beauty, so do everything to take good care of it. One of the major causes behind rapid hair fall is stress. When you are too pressurized with work or other personal tensions, you start to lose hair. Therefore, hair loss is a primary symptom behind a bad diet and a stressful lifestyle. So, how can you prevent hair loss? Some of the best vitamins for hair growth are vitamin A, C, D, E, and B-complexes, along with some micronutrients.
Like any other body part, your hair also needs special care and attention when it comes to growth and repair. The cuticle and hair follicles require active conditioning and strengthening for supporting potential growth of hair cells. What happens when you have a nutrient deficiency? You come across a lot of biological disorders associated with the type of nutrient deficit. Similarly, if your daily diet does not contain the best vitamins for hair growth, you will suffer from rapid hair loss.
Your genetic makeup, age, imbalances in hormonal secretion, and any medical history can be a reason for hair fall. You surely cannot control your genetics or age, but can definitely alter your living conditions according to your needs. If you are suffering from dire hair fall, focus on your diet and sleeping cycle. A poor sleep cycle can result in insomnia and other sleep disorders, which can indirectly lead to hair loss.
Sometimes hair loss can be a result of certain psychological breakdowns as well, such as feelings of anxiety and depression. When you have low self-esteem or dwelling in acute depression, hair fall is a prominent sign of it.
How does diet affect hair growth?
Poor dietary conditions can lead to a disorder like a telogen effluvium, which is characteristic of temporary loss of hair. Telogen effluvium causes your hair prematurely shifts your hair cells in the growing phase (anagen) to the resting phase (telogen). Both anagen and telogen are part of your hair generation cycle. The sudden conversion of hair cells from anagen to telogen leads to premature fall of hair, resulting in temporary baldness. Telogen effluvium can be a result of bad diet routine over a period of several months. You can treat the condition by including the best vitamins for hair growth in your regular diet chart, followed by a healthy lifestyle.
Several nutrient deficiencies are directly or indirectly related to loss of hair, or degraded hair quality. There are many other factors that contribute to hair loss apart from stress and poor diet. Crucial vitamins to support hair growth are niacin (vitamin B3), biotin (vitamin B7), vitamin C, and vitamin D. Remember that simply by adding vitamins to your diet will promote hair growth. There are other micro and macronutrients that you need to supplement your diet with for a bigger and better experience.
Proper nourishment of hair is the key factor that leads to long, beautiful hair. Minerals such as iron and zinc are very important for supporting good hair quality and strengthening of hair follicles. If you can simply introduce these few micronutrients with appropriate vitamins, it is good enough for preventing loss of hair.
Which foods can promote hair growth?
To consider the best kind of food for hair growth, consult your dietician at the earliest. You need to follow a proper healthy diet that will prevent your hair fall and provide nourishment. Some of the top five foods that can help in healthier growth of hair are as follows:
- Nuts- the enormous source of omega-3 fatty acids, vitamin E, vitamin B7, and copper.
- Oysters- very rich in iron, selenium, zinc, vitamin D and vitamin B12.
- Sweet potatoes- a good source of magnesium, zinc, potassium, sodium, phosphorus, omega-3 fatty acids, vitamins A, C, K, E and B-complexes.
- Eggs- high in protein, vitamin B7, iron, sulphur, selenium, zinc and certain B family of vitamins.
- Spinach- rich in vitamin C, vitamin A, vitamin B9 (folic acid or folate), beta-carotene, and iron.
How can vitamin deficiency cause hair loss?
When it comes to taking good care of your hair, it should be both internal as well as external care. Eating the right kind of foods and maintaining a good hair care regimen is very important for maintaining hair regeneration ability. Proper nourishment of hair externally involves good shampooing and conditioning, followed by hair masks, steam care, and protein treatment.
What is internal care for hair growth? Internal care involved consuming the key vitamins through natural food sources as a risk-free supplementation in your daily diet. There are many synthetic supplements and hair care pills available as well, but they may have certain risk factors. Always consider going for the natural sources of vitamins and minerals than the artificial ones. Try eating freshly cut fruits and vegetables rich in nutrients best for hair growth. Absence of a properly balanced diet can often pave the way towards conditions of temporary baldness like telogen effluvium.
However, it is not completely harmful to take diet supplements containing added vitamins and necessary minerals supporting hair growth. All you need to remember is to critically administer the DV (daily volume) of the supplements. Seek the help of a professional dietician and fix the daily consumable amount of nutrient supplements according to your needs. Never overeat or undereat. The right volume of vitamins is very necessary to give apt results, based on your hair fall rate.
How important is vitamin D for hair?
Out of all the crucial vitamins needed for hair growth, vitamin D is one of the essentials. Apart from hair growth, vitamin D contributes to many other biological functions like good skin and nail health. Vitamin D plays a vital role in creating and reviving hair follicles, which are small pores from where hair originates. Formation of new hair follicles helps in maintaining the strength and thickness of hair cells. New follicles also prevent the falling of pre-existing hair, by repairing and revitalizing them continuously. Thus, vitamin D extensively supports hair growth as well as regrowth.
What are the benefits of vitamin D?
Apart from giving your hair strength, vitamin D has multiple other functions in your body as well.
- Promotes the healthy condition of teeth and bones.
- Supports proper functioning of brain cells, immune system, and nervous health.
- Regulates insulin levels in your body, thereby aiding in diabetes management.
- Promotes cardiovascular and pulmonary health.
- Stimulate the activation of genes that can prevent cancer development.
When you suffer from vitamin D deficiency, it affects not only your hair health but also several other body functioning. Some of the signs of vitamin D deficiency include:
- The weakness of muscles.
- Slower healing of wounds.
- Continuous fatigue, along with mood swings mostly involving depression, anxiety and hysteria.
- Negatively affects your tolerance of power.
- Lesser bone density leading to recurrent fractures.
- Chronic pain.
- Worsened risks associated with higher blood pressure.
Lack of enough exposure to sunlight or eating foods less in vitamin D content can often lead to its deficiency. Try eating foods that are extremely rich in vitamin D like avocado, nuts, chia seeds, and cheese. Some nonveg food options for high vitamin D content include eggs and fishes like trout, sardines, tuna, and salmon.
What is the recommended dosage of vitamin D?
It is always better the measure the amount of vitamin supplement or food to keep a count on its intake. Generally, you measure nutrient intake in terms of IU (international units) or mcg (micrograms). 40 international units are equivalent to 1 microgram of vitamin D.
The recommended daily doses of vitamin D according to different age groups are as follows:
- Infants within the range of 0 to 12 months need 10 mcg or 400 IU.
- Children within the range of 1 to 18 years need 15 mcg or 600 IU.
- Adults till the age of 70 years need 15 mcg or 600 IU.
- Adults over the age of 70 years need 20 mcg or 800 IU.
- Breastfeeding or pregnant women need 15 mcg or 600 IU.
Exceeding the daily dosage may lead to vitamin toxicity. Consult a doctor for optimum dosage cycles.
Which vitamin B-complexes support hair growth?
Vitamin B family members are directly linked to promoting hair growth, as well as maintaining its strength and repair. The different complexes of vitamin B family involved in hair growth are:
- B1 (thiamine)
- B2 (riboflavin)
- B3 (niacin)
- B5 (pantothenic acid)
- B6 (pyridoxine)
- B7 (biotin)
- B9 (folic acid or folate)
- B12 (cobalamin)
Vitamin B rich foods are mostly green leafy vegetables, whole grains, eggs, fish, beans, legumes, nuts and avocado. Meat is also an excellent source of vitamin B like poultry and beef liver.
As vitamin B complexes fall under the class of water-soluble vitamins, you cannot retain them in your body for long. The amount of the vitamin that you require will enter your cells and get stored there. The remaining part of vitamins passed out of your system urination. If any excess of vitamins remains in your body cells, it may pose toxicity. Therefore, remember not to cross the dosage amount of vitamin supplements in order to prevent any potential cell toxicity.
Out of all members of vitamin B family, biotin or vitamin B7 is crucial when it comes to hair growth. Many studies show that lower levels of vitamin B7 in the body can cause extensive hair loss problems. Buy hair growth pills or eat foods rich in biotin to suffice the deficit amount of the vitamin your body.
Which hair habits contribute to hair loss?
There are certain hair care habits that you might do quite often. Sometimes, you unknowingly mess up with your hair health while styling it. Regular hair habits include curling iron, straightening iron, hairdryers, and so on. Extreme heating can lead to sheer hair damage over time, finally contributing to rapid hair fall. Over-styling of hair with high heat-generating appliances is never a good option. Instead of trying to make your hair look beautiful, you are indirectly putting its growth cycle at stake.
Avoid using too much of blow dryers or any other hair ironing appliances to maintain good hair health. Regular use of hair extensions tends to pull out your hair a bit forcibly that can later cause traction alopecia. Condition your hair with hair growth oil to give it a sleek and shiny look, without any hair loss risks.
Sometimes other secondary factors may also affect the rate of hair growth, which may not be directly genetical. Have you ever been subjected to medical treatments involving radiation, chemotherapy or adjuvant therapeutics? Any therapies or history of allergies and illnesses can be a cause for hair loss in future. Before you think of modifying your diet with vitamins and minerals, it is important to consult a dietician for support. Let your doctor know about your medical history so that you choose the right dietary route.
Takeaway preventive measures
The primary way to defend your hair loss problem is by eating foods containing the best vitamins for hair growth. For a good supply of natural vitamin D, expose yourself under the sun for 15 to 20 minutes every day. Adding nutritional supplements to your daily will also help you gain enough minerals and key vitamins to support hair growth. Be careful of the dosage and ingredients present in the supplements to avoid any potential allergic reactions.
If you have brittle hair, you need to follow a gentler hair care routine to avoid hair fall. You can prevent hair breakage or formation of split ends by using a mild shampoo and conditioner. Do not pull your hair too much while combing. Use a soft hairbrush and focus on massaging your scalp more to avoid tangling. Avoid tying your hair too tight or high-end ponytails. Too much strain on your hair during tight hairstyles puts extra force on hair strands, and pull them off easily. Before going to bed, loosely tie your hair into a braid to avoid any hair strains.