Healthy and natural hair growth is a sign of healthy body, in terms of healthy eating habits and stress free lifestyle. Eventhough inheritance is an important factor, which you can’t change, there are several things you can do to promote hair growth naturally.
In this article, you will find many natural hair growth tips including lifestyle changes, foods to eat, vitamins to take and other nutrients to incorporate. Read on to learn how to promote hair growth naturally.
Lifestyle Changes to Promote Hair Growth
Embrace a healthy lifestyle. Your body works like a perfectly designed machine, and certain things, like sleep, can help repair damaged tissues and promote overall health. Try to sleep at least 7-8 hours a day in order to help your body (and your hair) heal itself.
Clean your hair carefully. Depending on your hair type (oily, dry, or normal hair), shampoo and condition your hair only 3-4 times per week. If you shampoo and condition your hair every day, you may eliminate sebum (natural oils) present on your scalp. This will make your hair tend to grow slower.
- Use the right products when cleaning your hair.
Avoid stress on your hair. Hairstyles like tight ponytails or cornrows put stress on the hair follicle. Instead, try hairstyles that minimize the stress on your follicles, so they can promote healthy hair growth.
Don’t brush your hair excessively. Improper and excessive combing or brushing can pull hair out prematurely, preventing natural hair growth.
- Don’t pull harshly without the assistance of a conditioner.
- While brushing or combing, always hold your hair in one hand to prevent pulling hair out from the root.
De-stress your life. Learn how to relieve stress that your body produces as a result of daily activities. Stress can hinder hair production, though it will not contribute to baldness in either males or females.
- Exercise is a great way to relieve stress.
Remove physical stressors. Injuries, surgeries, and other trauma can hinder hair growth or even cause hair loss. In these cases there may be a 10-12 week delay in the production of hair while the body focuses on repairing other cells and injuries.
- If you have just gone through intense physical trauma, give your body time to heal itself before expecting to see hair growth. After your body is healed, you should begin to see hair growth again.
Prevent scalp infections. Scalp infections, caused by ringworm of folliculitis, can damage the scalp area, preventing follicles from growing in a healthy manner.
Foods That Promote Hair Growth
Healthy and beautiful hair is a result of a healthy body and a healthy diet. Nutritional deficiencies can lead to problems like brittleness, dryness, dandruff and finally hair loss.
Luckily, there are certain foods that promote healthy and natural hair growth.
The most important nutrient for natural hair growth is the omega-3 fatty acids which make up 3% of the hair follicle. Your body does not make its own omega-3 so you need to get it from foods. Salmon is one of the best sources of omega-3 fatty acids and other healthy fats that hydrate the scalp and hair follicles. You can also get omega-3 and other fatty acids that are good for your follicles from mackerel, sardines, walnuts, avocados or pumpkin seeds.
Eggs are also an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids, and they also contain biotin, which many people take in supplement form to promote hair growth. However, it’s not the egg white that will make your hair long and beautiful, it’s the yolk. Consuming too many egg whites can block the absorption of biotin, causing a depletion of this micronutrient.
Yogurt is a good source of protein, and it also contains high amounts of vitamin B5 (pantothenic acid). Vitamin B5 is present in many hair products and it is very enriching for the hair. Yogurt is also high in vitamin D. New studies show that vitamin D is an important nutrient for hair follicles.
- You can also try other diary products like skim milk, cottage cheese and low-fat regular cheese to get these nutrients.
Your body needs protein to produce healthy hair. Beef is an excellent source of protein along with B vitamins, zinc and iron.
Lean beef can be eaten 2-3 times a week. If you don’t like the taste, you can try other lean meats like bison, pork and lamb for healthy and natural hair growth.
- For best results, try to eat fresh beef instead of the canned version.
Note: If you have high cholesterol, other sources of protein may be more appropriate and have less impact on your cholesterol levels.
5. Sweet Potatoes
- Eat foods loaded with beta-carotene, instead of using supplements with high doses.
Like sweet potatoes, carrots contain a good amount of beta-carotene. Also, the vitamin A present in carrots helps in producing healthy sebum for the scalp.
- A glass of carrot juice in the morning is a great way to start the day. You can also eat carrots as a snack, or include them in salads.
Zinc deficiency can lead to a flaky dry scalp area and also cause hair loss. Oysters tend to be very high in zinc and protein. Your hair is made up of 97% protein and foods high in protein help replace lost hairs with healthier hair. Eggs, beef and all kinds of nuts are also good sources of zinc.
Avocados are high in essential fatty acids naturally found in skin cells (which help keep your skin smooth). When topically applied to the hair and scalp, they have the added ability to stimulate collagen and elastin production.
- Mix a little avocado with sour cream and apply it to your hair and scalp for about ten minutes before washing it off.
- You can also eat any dark green leafy vegetables for these nutrients.
10. Sunflower Seeds
Sunflower seeds contain hair loss preventing nutrients including protein, zinc, biotin, selenium, potassium, iron, B vitamins, vitamin E, magnesium and calcium. They are also high in omega-6 fatty acids.
- Eat a handful of raw sunflower seeds to encourage healthy hair growth.
- Alternatively, you can sprinkle some sunflower seeds on salads and steamed vegetables.
Note: Avoid eating them in excess, because they are high in calorie and fat content.
Walnuts contain omega-3 fatty acids and other important nutrients like biotin, vitamin E and copper. If you are deficient in these important nutrients, you can suffer from hair loss, lacking richness and luster of your hair.
- Try to replace your usual cooking oil with walnut oil.
Note: If you are allergic, don’t consume walnuts.
Almonds will make your hair grow faster and thicker due to their high biotin content. One cup of almonds contains nearly one-third of your daily requirement.
Oats contain a good amount of zinc, B vitamins, protein and copper, which are important nutrients for preventing hair loss. It also contains important minerals for hair growth, such as phosphorus, potassium, magnesium and iron.
- Eating a bowl of oatmeal for breakfast is a great way to start a day.
- If you like to include oats in your salad, soak them for several hours to improve the nutritional value.
- Alternatively, you can enjoy healthy snacks made of oats.
Blueberries are high in vitamin C, which keeps the blood vessels healthy and improves circulation to the scalp. If you don’t get enough vitamin C, your hair will weaken.
- You can also eat tomatoes, kiwi, and strawberries for vitamin C.
Other Nutrients That Promote Hair Growth
You need a variety of different minerals and nutrients to promote hair growth. Getting a variety of the following in your diet can restore the luster and fullness to your hair.
Without enough iron, hair and its follicles are starved of oxygen. This means that the goodness in the root of your hair is much less effective along the length of the strand. You can increase your iron intake by eating dark green vegetables, whole grains, garden cress seeds or by adding iron supplements under supervision.
MSM (Methylsulfonylmethane) promotes hair growth by helping your body produce more keratin. This has been proven in studies that people given MSM have renewed hair growth in about six weeks time. MSM can be found in raw green leafy vegetables or cooked beets and asparagus. It is important to note that heat from cooking can damage MSM.
Moisture makes the hair supple, so make sure you get plenty of fluids. Water not only hydrates our bodies, but also keeps our hair silky and shiny. Water helps eliminate all toxins, chemical wastes and other pollutants from the body. Ideally, you should drink 8-10 glasses of water a day.
Essential Fatty Acids
Healthy hair needs essential fatty acids, which aids dry and brittle hair and improves the texture. Essential fatty acids are found in vegetable oils, whole grains, legumes, fresh nuts and oil seeds, spirulina, flax seed oil and pumpkin seeds. Roughly 15 – 20% of your daily calories should come from these sources.
- Instead of chemical hair products, always use herbals.
- Steroids produce hormones that create baldness.
- Getting your hair cut doesn’t make it grow faster, but without the split ends you will notice more growth.
- Massage your scalp before sleeping.
- Take care of hair when it is wet. Wet hair is easily damaged.
- Try to use heat as minimally as possible.