Are you on a ruthless routine hunt for gray hairs? Get this — there’s often more to the cause of those pesky grays than simple genetics. Did you know that a number of nutritional deficiencies can actually cause your hair to lose its luster? Reach for foods that contain essential vitamins and minerals to maintain your colorful tresses and enjoy an ample dose of additional health benefits.
1. Leafy Greens
Reach for dark leafy greens to get your essential B vitamins. Your scalp relies on Vitamin B-6 and Vitamin B-12 for the production of red blood cells which transport oxygen and nutrients. Hair color is also all about hormones and Vitamin B-2 is an important player in hormone production.
Copper is essential to the production of melanin — the source of hair color. As such, copper deficiencies can cause hair to gray. To load up on copper, reach for a sweet treat. Semisweet chocolate packs the power of copper; additional copper-rich foods include lentils and mushrooms.
Salmon is often touted for its health benefits so it is of little surprise this seafood staple provides a healthy hair essential. The selenium found in salmon helps regulate the hormone production essential to healthy tresses. This trace mineral fights free radicals to boot.
Berries and strawberries in particular — are a delicious way to get an extra boost of Vitamin C. Vitamin C helps produce collagen (found within hair follicles) and fight free radicals which have been linked with the aging process. Additional antioxidant vitamins include Vitamin A (think orange and yellow fruits) and Vitamin E (go for nuts and beans).
For an on-the-go boost of Vitamin E and copper, reach for almonds. They’re an easy snack to combat the mid-meal munchies and a number of studies suggest that almond consumption can help lower bad LDL cholesterol levels.