A deep conditioner will help make your hair look more silky, but if you really want longer and thicker strands, then you’ll want to add the right vitamins for hair growth to your daily intake.
According to Joshua Zeichner, MD, director of cosmetic and clinical research in dermatology at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City, Vitamins for hair growth “can help provide the hair follicles with the necessary building blocks for healthy activity,”. “This means that hair follicles can function to the best of their ability.” So what are the best vitamins for hair growth and thickness ?
While factors such as age, genetics and hormones also affect hair growth, optimal nutrient intake is key.
In this article, we provide information on the best vitamins for hair growth and thickness.
1. Vitamin A
All cells need vitamin A for growth. This includes hair, the fastest growing tissue in the human body.
Vitamin A also helps skin glands make an oily substance called sebum. Sebum moisturizes the scalp and helps keep hair healthy (Trusted Source).
Diets deficient in vitamin A may lead to several problems, including hair loss (Trusted Source).
While it’s important to get enough vitamin A, too much may be dangerous. Studies show that an overdose of vitamin A can also contribute to hair loss (Trusted Source).
Sweet potatoes, carrots, pumpkins, spinach and kale are all high in beta-carotene, which is turned into vitamin A.
Vitamin A can also be found in animal products such as milk, eggs and yogurt. Cod liver oil is a particularly good source.
You can also find vitamin A supplements
2. Vitamin C
Free radical damage can block growth and cause your hair to age, it can also cause structural damage to the proteins in hair, which can lead to split ends and breakage.
Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant that helps protect against the oxidative stress caused by free radicals (Trusted Source).
In addition, your body needs vitamin C to create a protein known as collagen — an important part of hair structure and is also good for skin nails.
Vitamin C also helps your body absorb iron, a mineral necessary for hair growth.
Kiwis, Strawberries, peppers, guavas and citrus fruits are all good sources of vitamin C. If we have a insufficient intake of Vitamin C it is recommended to take a whole food Vitamin C supplement such as
NATURELO Vitamin C with Organic Acerola Cherry and Natural Citrus Bioflavonoids – Whole Food Vegan Supplement – as it is made from whole food and not Ascorbic Acid.
One of the best known vitamins for hair growth is
Studies link biotin deficiency with hair loss in humans (Trusted Source).
Although biotin is used as an alternative hair-loss treatment, those who are deficient have the best results.
However, deficiency is very rare because it occurs naturally in a wide range of foods.
There’s also a lack of data about whether biotin is effective for hair growth in healthy individuals.
Other B-vitamins help create red blood cells, which carry oxygen and nutrients to the scalp and hair follicles. These processes are important for hair growth.
You can get B-vitamins from many foods, including whole grains, almonds, meat, fish, seafood and dark, leafy greens.
Additionally, animal foods are the only good sources of vitamin B12. So if you’re following a vegetarian or vegan diet, consider taking a supplement.
You can find a list of Whole Food B-vitamin supplements online. Our best recommendedd choice for quality and value are:
4. Vitamin D
In many of the studies and surveys within the review, people with alopecia areata had lower levels of vitamin D in the blood.
Research also shows that vitamin D may help create new follicles — the tiny pores in the scalp where new hair can grow (8) and that the lack of the Vitamin D Receptor Is Associated With Reduced Hair Follicle Growth (9)
5. Vitamin E
Similar to vitamin C, vitamin E is an antioxidant that can prevent oxidative stress.
Vitamin E has been used in dermatology since the 1950s to help protect the skin against aging, inflammation, and sun damage. The fat-soluble antioxidant is vital for maintaining healthy skin and a strong immune system.
Recently, vitamin E has been hailed as a cure-all to turn frizzy, damaged, unmanageable hair Into thick and shin locks out of a shampoo commercial. Need less to mention that many shampoo companies add them to their shampoo products.
A small trial from 2010Trusted Source found that vitamin E supplements improved hair growth in people with hair loss. It’s thought that the vitamin’s antioxidant properties helped reduce oxidative stress in the scalp. Oxidative stress has been linked with hair loss. Trusted Source.
In one study, people with hair loss experienced a 34.5% increase in hair growth after supplementing with vitamin E for 8 months (Trusted Source) The placebo group had only a 0.1% increase.
Sunflower seeds, almonds, spinach and avocados are all good sources of vitamin E.
If your natural Vitamin E intake from food however is not sufficient, we recommend a Whole-Food Organic Vitamin E Supplement.
Hair is made almost entirely of protein. Consuming enough is important for hair growth.
Animal studies show that protein deficiency may decrease hair growth and even lead to hair loss (18Trusted Source.
Iron helps red blood cells carry oxygen to your cells. This makes it an important mineral for many bodily functions, including hair growth.
Foods high in iron include clams, oysters, eggs, red meat, spinach and lentils.
Iron supplements are available online.
Zinc plays an important role in hair tissue growth and repair. It also helps keep the oil glands around the follicles working properly.
However, there are some anecdotal reports that supplementing with too high of a dose can also contribute to hair loss.
For this reason, it may be better to get your zinc from whole foods. Foods high in zinc include oysters, beef, spinach, wheat germ, pumpkin seeds and lentils.
When you take an oral supplement, it is absorbed in the bloodstream where it nourishes all cells, including your hair follicles. “Hair thrives on protein, iron, zinc, and vitamin B12, which support hair structure and growth and moisturize the scalp, among other functions. If you are not getting enough nutrients from your diet, supplements can increase low levels,” says Dendy Engelman, MD, board-certified dermatologic surgeon at Medical Dermatology & Cosmetic Surgery.
Of you’re deciding to take supplements, always make sure to get a good blend of all the above Vitamins and Minerals and make sure they are from Whole Food and not synthetic sources.
Our recommended choice of Whole Food Vitamins and Minerals blend for hair growth and thickness: