Home Beauty Trying to grow your hair? These are foods you need to eat

Trying to grow your hair? These are foods you need to eat

Trying to grow your hair? These are foods you need to eat


Poon also points to other leafy greens like kale and collard greens as a top foods for hair growth. “These are rich in a number of nutrients, including iron,” she explains. “Iron helps deliver oxygen to cells for health growth, so a deficiency of this important nutrient can negatively impact hair growth.”


Celebrity hairstylist Marc Mena points to avocado as one of his top choices, since the fruit contains vitamin A, B vitamins, vitamin C, vitamin D, vitamin E, iron, zinc, and biotin. “Biotin is often recommended for hair health and can be found in eggs, nuts, and whole grains,” Dr. Henry says.

Nuts and seeds

Nuts and seeds contain zinc and a handful of other essential hair care nutrients. “Many nuts and seeds contain many vitamins and minerals that promote hair growth, including vitamin B and vitamin E, zinc, fatty acids,” according to Dr. Murphy-Rose.

They’re also high in omega-3s, which help nourish the hair and support its growth and give luster. “You can find them in fatty fish like flaxseeds, chia seeds, and walnuts, and they also contribute to a healthy scalp,” says Dr. Henry. And, of course, they’re high in protein too: “Nuts and seeds are high in protein, your hair is made of protein, so it’s important that your diet is full of healthy sources,” adds Poon.


Fatty fish such as salmon are a great source of protein and omega fatty acids. “Salmon is a great source of omega fatty acids and protein plus B and D vitamins and selenium,” Dr. Murphy-Rose explains. Vitamin D also plays a role in hair production and can help create new hair follicles, according to Dr. Henry.


Eggs are not just a great source of protein, but contain lots of biotin and L-cysteine. “L-cysteine contributes to the formation of disulfide bonds within the hair’s protein structure, which helps to maintain the hair’s strength and integrity,” Dr. Penzi says.

Whole grains

Like eggs, whole grains are chock full of L-cysteine, as well as biotin and zinc.

Citrus fruits

“Citrus fruits, like oranges, grapefruits and lemons, are rich in vitamin C, which supports collagen production,” says Poon. “Collagen is an important component of the proteins that make up healthy hair.”

Bell peppers

“Collagen is essential for hair structure and growth, and vitamin C is vital for collagen production,” Dr. Henry concurs, noting that bell peppers are rich in vitamin C.

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Dr. Henry and Poon point to berries as a great source of Vitamin C too. “Açai berries and blueberries are high in antioxidants, which may help protect your hair from oxidative stress, keeping it looking young and radiant,” says Poon.

Bone broth

Dr. Penzi and Mena point to bone broth as one of their top picks since it contains so much collagen. “Bone broth really helps your hair,” Mena explains. “Stews, soups anything that’s made with bone.”

Milk, cheese, and yogurt

Don’t sleep on dairy! Dairy contains both vitamin D and L-lysine, according to Dr. Penzi. “L-lysine is essential for production of collagen, which is a protein that helps maintain the structure and strength of hair, skin, and nails,” she says. For an extra boost of protein, try greek yogurt: It contains all of the above as well as B5 and protein.


It might not technically be a food, but water is well-deserving of a spot on this list. “Staying hydrated is essential for overall health, including hair health,” Dr. Henry says. “Dehydration can make hair brittle and more prone to breakage.”

Lifestyle changes and supplements for hair growth

“In addition to getting proper nutrition, other lifestyle modifications can improve hair health. Stress plays a major role in hair health,” says Dr. Murphy-Rose. “Make sure to reduce stress as much as possible by partaking in activities that reduce your stress levels, whatever they are for you, and get adequate sleep and exercise.”

And because nutrient deficiencies contribute to hair thinning and hair loss, those with especially restrictive diets—or who struggle to get enough nutrients in their day to day regimen—may want to consider supplements for optimal hair health. “Nutrafol’s Hair Growth Nutraceuticals include a blend of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and botanical extracts to address underlying factors that might contribute to hair thinning and promote a conducive environment for hair growth,” says Dr. Henry, who adds that this is especially important if you follow a plant-based diet.

“Collagen is a crucial part of the hair growth cycle, and plant based diets often lack this element, leading to deficiencies as they do not consume animal byproducts,” she continues, suggesting Nutrafol’s Vegan Hair Growth Nutraceutical to help bridge that nutritional gap. “This formula successfully balances underlying key root causes of thinning for improved hair growth that is optimized for plant-based lifestyles.”

Danielle Sinay is the associate beauty editor at Glamour US. Follow her on Instagram @daniellesinay.

This feature originally appeared on Glamour US.


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