Everyone want strong and healthy hair, but is that something we can control or is it purely genetics. It actually turns out that hair care does begin with nutrition, and eating a plant based diet may provide some support.
Does a plant-based diet make your hair grow? A plant based diet can help you grow strong, healthy hair. While the direct evidence between plant based diet and hair growth is still being researched, there are many components of a plant based diet that will help your hair grow healthy.
Following a plant based diet can help ensure you are eating all the right nutrients, vitamins, and minerals that affect the quality of your hair. A few specific minerals for healthy hair growth are biotin and zinc, which are both commonly found in plant based foods.
- Biotin helps stimulate keratin production which is the protein found in hair.
- Zinc plays an important role in repairing damages hair and can help your hair look fuller.
Be aware that simply taking supplements for hair growth can be easy, but there can also be many side effects to taking too many. For example, if you take a multi-vitamin containing zinc and a zinc supplement, you might actually be harming hair growth and other processes in your body.
We recommend aiming to get most of your vitamins and minerals from whole plants. Consult a dietician and physician to make sure you are eating a balanced diet and taking the right supplements necessary for you.
A plant based diet might also be helpful for hair growth since it often bring people a wider array of nutrients, vitamins, and minerals that they were otherwise missing in their regular diet.
If you think you have a deficiency of any vitamin or mineral, you should always check with your doctor before taking any supplement no matter how safe it might be.
This article explores the connection between plant based diet and hair growth. Answered below are frequently asked questions about whether or not plant based diets help hair to grow.
Will a plant-based diet help in hair loss?
A plant based diet can help hair loss, but it does depend on the reason for the hair loss in the first place. In many cases, hair loss is due to reasons unrelated to your diet such as genetics.
However, hair loss can also be related to a combination of things and making sure your diet is providing the right levels of essential nutrients can help eliminate that as a source. We recommend you consult a dermatologist if you think your hair loss may be significant or has increased suddenly.
Here are a few plant based foods we love and think will help you grow strong and healthy hair:
- Sesame seeds, added to your meals, can promote healthier and shiny hair. Sesame is rich in minerals, polyunsaturated fatty acids, and vitamins. Sesame seeds have many overall benefits and can also help control blood pressure.
- Sunflower seeds contains Vitamin E, Omega-3, and Zinc, minerals that are essential in protecting hair from environmental toxins.
- Pumpkin seeds provides minerals such as copper, magnesium, iron, calcium, and zinc.
- Flaxseed is rich in Omega-3. The fatty acids helps reduce excess inflammation, which could help prevent hair loss. They are also rich in calcium and magnesium, which support the smooth texture of hair follicles.
- Walnuts, contain Omega 3 and Omega 6 fatty acids, biotin, and Vitamin B. These nutrients help in strengthening hair cuticles and nourish the scalp, which could help diminish thinning follicles.
- Lentils and beans are rich in zinc, protein, and folic acid sources, which are vital for hair cell development, repair, and growth.
- Spinach can be a source of iron that can be helpful for hair growth.
Can a plant-based diet cause hair loss?
Unfortunately yes, a plant based diet can cause you to lose hair or to have less healthy hair. Many people on a plant based diet do not get all the essential nutrients they need to maintain healthy hair.
For example, many people on a plant based diet find it hard to find an adequate source of plant based protein or are too dependent on a specific type of protein for a majority of meals. Others may be eating many of their calories from low nutrient junk foods that are plant based, but not nutritious.
If you are on a plant based diet and are experiencing hair loss or fear hair loss, we recommend you re-evaluate the foods are you consuming on a regular basis. It can be something as simple as not eating enough healthy fats or being too reliant on a single source of protein.
Variety in food choices can make a big difference when it comes to hair health. If you feel that there might be a bigger issue, or your hair loss is severe and sudden, seek advice from your doctor as it might be due to a reason unrelated to diet.
Do ensure you have a healthy diet by eating plenty of healthy fats from sources like avocados, nuts, legumes and seeds like chia seeds. Experts also recommend you vary protein sources with foods like soy, lentils, nuts, and protein rich vegetables like broccoli.
Soy can be a great protein source, but we need to warn you about consuming too much soy.
Eating too much soy can lead to hormonal imbalances since it is linked to higher levels of estrogen in your body. This could be bad for both males and females, potentially affecting your hair.
If you have been overly reliant on soy as a source of protein, we suggest you cut back and replace it with another plant proteins.
Can you reverse balding with diet?
Yes, you absolutely can reverse balding with a diet, but that answer really depends on what was causing the hair loss to begin with.
Lots of balding patterns, both male and female, are thought to be genetic and might have little to do with dietary patterns. However, if your balding comes from a specific dietary deficiency, be it essential vitamins or minerals, then changing your diet will absolutely help regrow healthy hair.
Often times, it’s hard to determine what exactly is causing balding, and in many cases it could even be a combination of factors. We researched a few common dietary mistakes people have made, and have a few suggestions for how to fix them.
Check below and see if any apply to you:
Are you getting all your essential vitamins and minerals to grow healthy hair?
Biotin, Vitamin A, Vitamin E, and Zinc are all components of growing healthier, stronger hair. If you are missing any of these essential nutrients in your diet, it could cause thin or frail hair that may seem like balding.
We suggest eating more carrots, legumes, nuts and seeds to ensure you are getting enough Biotin, Vitamin A, and Vitamin E. Legumes and seeds are also great sources for zinc that you can try adding to a diet.
Are you eating enough healthy fats?
Some studies suggest Omega-3s can help grow fuller and longer hair. These “healthy fats” help our bodies in basic metabolic functions, like growing stronger cells and reducing excess inflammation.
If you’re looking to add healthy fats to your diet, try avocados, walnuts, chia seeds, or flax seeds. Many of these superfoods can be combined with oatmeal to make a nutritious and tasty plant based meal that can be good for your hair!
Are you eating enough protein?
When people switch to a plant based diet, they can find it hard to find adequate sources of protein. Your hair is made up of mostly protein, so ensuring the consumption of different amino acids is key to growing healthy hair.
A few plant based protein sources we love include legumes, seeds, and nuts. There is also a surprisingly large amount of protein in certain vegetables including avocados, potatoes, and broccoli.
How can vegans grow hair faster?
Growing hair faster can be difficult and we currently don’t know a tried and true method to ensure faster growth. However, we can ensure our bodies have all the right ingredients to facilitate hair growth such as Biotin, Vitamin A, Vitamin E, and Zinc.
A plant based vegan diet will provide all of these essential vitamins and minerals.
If you are looking to grow hair faster, follow a balanced diet based off of whole foods. We recommend including adequate amounts of healthy fats from foods like avocados, walnuts, and chia seeds and proteins from foods like lentils and broccoli.
Experts also recommend maintaining good scalp health by moisturizing often.
If you think you are eating a balanced diet, but are still not seeing any growth, we suggest you reach out to a dermatologist. A diet can play a large role in hair growth, but it is not the only thing that affects hair.
If you don’t have a dietary deficiency there might be another reason and your doctor will be able to help you find out.
Hair Growth with Plant Based Diet: Conclusion
Are there any positive benefits to gain from a vegan diet as far as hair growth is concerned? The answer is an absolute yes, however it is good to understand that a balanced diet plays a significant role in achieving proper growth.
Nonetheless, people may see improvement in their hair when they stick with a vegan diet, but there are also concerns over it backfiring. One of the leading causes of hair loss from eating plant based would be the lack of protein.
Hair follicles are made of protein, therefore it is important to consume enough to maintain healthy hair. Furthermore, it is important to vary the types of protein you consume and not fall into a consistent pattern of only eating one kind.
Healthy balanced plant based diet can play a role in growing healthy hair, but it is not the only factor. There are plenty of other facets to hair that may also result from genetics that are unrelated to diet.
For best results, consult a dietician and physician to discuss your diet in relation to hair loss or growth. They will be able to full understand the scope of concern and offer the best course of action.