Have you ever heard about hair loss due to vitamin deficiency? It’s not only minerals and vitamins’ deficiency that can trigger hair loss. Poor diet and unhealthy eating habits in general can lead to degradation of hair and skin. Vitamins are organic compounds that your body needs for effective functioning. As your body cannot produce vitamins on its own, you have to take them from the food sources and supplements especially made for meeting vitamin deficiencies. The role of vitamins in your body is to speed up chemical reactions taking place in the body, or in simple words to speed up the body metabolism.
Although, certain vitamins are essential for health hair growth, you cannot take them in unlimited amounts. Your body has a certain minimum and maximum limit for daily intake of every vitamin. If taking less than the required amount makes your body deficient of that vitamin, consuming it beyond a certain safe limit can also be toxic to the body and may even trigger increase hair loss. In the following lines, we will share with you the vitamins that you need for healthy hair growth and their food sources as well.
Vitamin A protects your hair follicles from damage caused by free radicals – the atoms with an unpaired electron. Deficiency of Vitamin A is known to cause dryness of hair and make them fragile, prone to breakage. Carrots, broccoli, liver, and cod liver oil are some rich sources of vitamin A. But to your surprise, too much vitamin A intake can trigger hair loss as well. Recommended daily dosage for vitamin A is 700 micrograms for females and 900 micrograms for males.
As the name suggests, it is a complex mixture of numerous compounds including thiamin, riboflavin, pyridoxine, niacin, cobalmin, and pantothenic acid. This group is believed to contribute to the nourishment of hair follicles. Deficiency of vitamin B can also result in anemia and some neurological disorders. Food sources of vitamin B include tuna, turkey, potatoes, whole grains and bananas.
Biotin and folic acid are especially beneficial for our hair. Biotin is found in legumes, bread, fish, and beans. The recommended dose is 30-100 microgram per day. Folic acid is very important for hair follicle cell division and growth. The recommended daily dose is 400 microgram per day. It is found in leafy vegetables like spinach, lettuce; dried beans; kidney and liver; and other vegetables and fruits. Pregnant and nursing women are advised to consult a doctor for recommended dose of folic acid.
Vitamin C is essential to maintain healthy collagen in the connective tissues in your body and around hair follicles. It is a strong antioxidant – a naturally occurring substance that your body needs to repair damage caused by free radicals. It is abundantly found in citrus fruits. The recommended daily dose of vitamin C is 90 mg per day with a maximum limit of 2000 mg per day.
Vitamin E is a set of eight related fat-soluble vitamins with great antioxidant properties. It provides physical stability to the cell membrane of hair follicles and other cells. Nuts, asparagus, and corn are few foods rich in vitamin A. Daily recommended dose of vitamin A is 10-14 mg/day, and dose greater than 400 IU is not recommended.
Minerals are inorganic elements that are essential for our health and well-being. Essential minerals for hair health include iron, copper, iodine, silica, selenium, and zinc. Iron is particularly essential for healthy hair growth. Iron deficiency is among the most common causes of hair loss in women. Iron helps in manufacturing of hemoglobin, which is essential for transpirations of oxygen to every single cell of the body, including hair follicles.
These vitamins and minerals are not specific to hair health. A balanced diet rich in vitamins and minerals is good for your overall health and well-being, and helps you to maintain a healthy body, sharp mind and beautiful hair.