Information and Solutions for Men and Women

Keep Hair Healthy to Prevent Hair Loss

A healthy diet and lifestyle promotes healthy hair.

Most people don’t spend a lot of time thinking about how to keep their hair as healthy as possible until it starts thinning. Other than an occasional bad hair day, the vast majority of people get by just fine without knowing how hair grows, what types of nutrients help keep hair healthy, or the ingredients that may help or harm the condition of their hair. But while genetics and environment both have a role to play in how your hair looks, there are definitely some factors to consider in hair care products and lifestyle choices that promote hair growth and keep the hair you have looking good longer.

Table 84: Quick Diet and Nutrition tips for Healthy Hair

thinning_hair_women_drinking_waterDrink lots of water. Good hydration can help keep hair from becoming too dry, a key element to avoiding breakage. Try to drink eight glasses of water a day. 296

Too much caffeine and alcohol consumption. They can deplete nutrients and increase adrenal hormone levels, both of which can lead to hair loss. 297

Eat healthy food. Medical experts stress that what we put into our bodies is as important as what we put on our tresses in the shower. Choose fresh vegetables and fruit (especially dark, leafy greens), whole grains, organic dairy products, as well as high-quality proteins like salmon, oysters, nuts, and eggs to avoid nutritional deficiencies that can cause hair loss. 298

The sweets. This increases the production of insulin and can worsen male balding and female pattern hair loss. 37

Add healthy fats to your diet—essential fatty acids are crucial to healthy hair. 297 Grape seed oil is a particularly good choice—it contains OPCs, which naturally stimulate hair growth, and can be used safely at high temperatures without turning possibly carcinogenic. 37

Lots of fatty foods. Saturated fats (e.g., from high fat meat and dairy foods) and trans fats found in processed and fried foods are pro-inflammatory and inhibit sex hormone binding globulin (important for keeping testosterone from transforming to DHT). 297

Add exotic vegetables in your salads. Wild greens native to southwestern United States have far greater antioxidant and mineral content (e.g., vitamin A, vitamin C, and iron) than the commonly used iceberg lettuce. 117

Go organic. Research shows that organically grown fruits, herbs, and vegetables contain significantly more nutrients—including copper, iron, magnesium, selenium, silicon, sulfur, and zinc—all essential for healthy hair. 222
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