A common cause of poor hair condition or hair loss is a shortage of essential vitamins and minerals. Below we put the top seven most important vitamins and minerals for healthy hair growth and prevention of hairloss in a row.
Biotin, or vitamin B8, is one of the most important vitamins against hairloss. Vitamin B8 is necessary for maintaining healthy hair. Biotin contributes to the production of keratin, which is important for healthy hair, scalp and nails. Biotin also can prevent graying of the hair. Biotin is found in: soy products, nuts (especially almonds, hazelnuts), peanuts (a legume), eggs and milk.
Folic acid is essential for the growth of tissues and cell development. Because of this, it is also important for healthy hair follicles and thereby the hair growth. Folic acid also ensures a better blood circulation, so that the nutrients can better reach the scalp. Folic acid is also known as vitamin B11 and B9 is called in Germany, France and the United States. Foods rich in folic acid are green leafy vegetables, sprouts, cabbage, broccoli, citrus fruits and liver.
Selenium is a mineral that plays an important role in maintaining healthy hair. A deficiency may contribute to brittle hair and hair loss. Selenium supports the body in the processing of proteins. Since hair consists mainly of protein, sufficient selenium is essential for hair growth. Selenium is found in many foods in small quantities. Brazil nuts, fish and shellfish are very rich in selenium.
Just like Selenium Zinc has an approved EFSA health claim that it helps to maintain healthy hair. Zinc provides a good structure of proteins and therefore for all body tissues, including hair. Also, zinc is involved in the formation of keratin. It is, therefore, considered to be one of the best materials for healthy hair growth. A low zinc value may also increase the likelihood of more DHT in the body and a deficiency of zinc can lead to more hairs in the telogen (resting) phase, and thin and fragile hair. Zinc is among others found in oysters, meat, bread, legumes and sunflower seeds.
Iron is a component of hemoglobin, this substance carries oxygen throughout the body. Iron deficiency can cause brittle hair and hairloss. Iron is present in many foods, such as meat, beans, dark green leafy vegetables, pumpkin seeds and seaweed. Iron is always sufficiently within a varied diet.
Vitamins from the B group
In addition to the specific B-vitamin B8 (biotin) and B11 (folic acid), all B vitamins are of great importance for healthy hair. They play an essential role in the metabolism in the cells.
For example, a deficiency of Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin) contribute to hairloss. B2 also supports the inclusion of vitamin B6 and iron, both important for a good hair growth. Vitamin B2 you will find among others in dairy, meat, broccoli, egg and nuts. Niacinamide (or niacin, vitamin B3) causes a dilation of the blood vessels which stimulates the blood flow in the scalp so that nutrients are better able to reach the hair and the scalp. Also, it can lower cholesterol, which can contribute to a reduction in hairloss. Vitamin B3 is found in fish, meat, nuts and grains. Of Vitamin B5 (pantothenic acid), it is known that a deficiency can cause hairloss. Vitamin B5 can be found in chicken, milk, cereal and salmon. A deficiency of Vitamin B12 (Cyanocobalamin) can contribute to hair loss and developing gray hair. Vitamin B12 is only found in foods of animal origin such as meat and dairy.
Vitamin A (retinol) is an antioxidant which improves the general health of the scalp. It stimulates the production of sebum. Sebum protects the hair from drying out. Make sure you get enough of this vitamin, but not too much. To much Vitamin A can can actually stimulate hairloss. A deficiency of this vitamin can lead to dry hair and dry scalp. Vitamin A is found in many foods such as milk, broccoli, spinach, carrots and cabbage. With a varied diet you will almost always get enough vitamin A.