If you are concerned about the condition of your hair, your eye may be drawn to shampoo labels detailing added vitamins and minerals that promise to give hair health a boost. But before those products can have any beneficial effect, you need to make sure you have sufficient levels inside your body. The ideal route is through eating the right foods and there are plenty of multi-vitamin supplements on the market that can give further help. Here are six vitamins and minerals your hair can’t do without. Biotin biotin   Fast becoming the most popular hair supplement and is to be found infused in many hair products. As a water-soluble vitamin, biotin cannot be stored by the body and therefore needs to be ingested every day. You can get your biotin from many sources including cheese, yogurt, chicken, liver, almonds, meat and oily fish such as tuna and salmon. Omega oils omega oils Improve a dry scalp, increase the elasticity of the hair and promote hair growth. Although essential fatty acids, we do not naturally produce them so including them in our diet (e.g. oily fish, fresh seeds, wholegrain breakfast cereals) is paramount. Vitamin C  vitamin c Good for us in so many ways and it is certainly good for our scalp, playing a part in supplying it with oxygen-infused blood that promotes hair growth. Furthermore, it boosts collagen, a protein that fights off free radicals that adversely affect the hair’s growth, texture and thickness. Vitamin C is also essential to iron absorption. Iron iron An important player in the body’s hair growth functions. Choose iron-rich foods such as red meat, broccoli, dark chocolate, pumpkin seeds, wholewheat pasta and sundried tomatoes – and wash it down with a glass of orange juice to facilitate absorption. B vitamins b vitamins These can be found in, among other foods, salmon, seaweed and dark green leafy veg. If you have been feeling weak or tired, have begun to bruise easily and noticed that your hair growth has slowed down, you may be deficient in some of this large group of vitamins. Vitamin D vitamin d A deficiency is something we hear a lot about these days with a reported rise in rickets. With many health benefits including the promotion of healthy follicle growth, it’s a vitamin worth having in abundance. Most people generate the majority of their vitamin D from sunlight but supplements and oily fish, eggs and fortified breakfast cereals can help, too.



By Ian Watson


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