Want thicker hair? The 13 growth-boosting foods that won't break the bank | The Sun

SOFT, thick and healthy hair is something a fair few of us dream about.

But whether it's down to genetics, age, stress or diet, the hair of our dreams isn't an everyday reality for most of us.

Were you to Google how to achieve luscious locks, you'd probably get a number of supplement recommendations.

But it's possible to get all the hair-healthy nutrients you need through your diet, rather than breaking the bank on gummies and pills.

So it's worth making minor tweaks to what you eat for a start.

According to Valerie Agyeman, dietitian and host of women's health podcast Flourish Heights, you want to go for foods rich in "fat-soluble vitamins, B-complex vitamins, omega-3 fatty acids, and iron" to keep your tresses looking healthy.

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Research even suggests that adding these nutrients into your diet can sometimes improve hair loss-symptoms.

If these ingredients sound a little obscure, here are 15 cheap foods you can add to your diet to improve your hair health.

1. Fatty fish

A study published in the Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology found that eating lots of fatty fish can make your hair thicker and reduce the amount of dead hairs on your head.

Salmon is an excellent example of this, as are mackerel, tuna and herring.

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2. Nuts

Healthy fats are a running theme when it comes to healthy hair.

Mona Gohara, associate clinical professor of dermatology at the Yale School of Medicine, told Yahoo Life that nuts are teaming with healthy fats that can benefit your hair skin and nails.

Walnuts, almonds, cashews are rich in zinc – research from 2018 shows that being deficient in these has been linked to hair loss.

Meanwhile, Valerie said she favours pistachios for their biotin content. This is a B-vitamin touted for maintaining strong and healthy locks.

3. Eggs

Another source of hair-boosting biotin is eggs.

They're also a great source of zinc and selenium, other hair-healthy nutrients, according to Valerie.

4. Beans

You might have heard that getting enough protein is essential for healthy hair.

Meat isn't the only source of it. Mona and Valerie told Yahoo Life that beans, chickpeas, peanuts, soybeans, and lentils are fantastic sources of keratin, the protein your strands are composed of.

You'd also be getting a hearty dose of iron from then legumes and pulses.

5. Dark, leafy greens

Spinach, kale and rocket are dark leafy greens that are loaded with vitamin A.

Studies actually recommend getting this nutrient from food rather than supplements, as too much of it can have the opposite of intended effect, causing hair loss.

7. Sweet potatoes

These sweet spuds are yet another great source of vitamin A, as they contain beta-carotene which converts to the nutrient.

8. Avocados

Valerie said: "Avocados are rich in Vitamin E, an antioxidant that provides nourishment to the hair.

"Consuming just a medium-sized avocado provides approximately 28 percent of your daily vitamin E requirements."

9. Seeds

Like nuts and salmon, seeds are packed with hair-healthy omega 3 fatty acids.

They also contain vitamin E, zinc, and selenium.

Don't know what seeds to go for? Try flaxseeds, chia seeds, sunflower seeds, and pumpkin seeds and sprinkle them on your morning yoghurt or porridge.

10. Yoghurt

Speaking of yoghurt, the breakfast staple is loaded with protein, as well as nutrients and probiotics.

An animal study published in the Public Library of Science found that mice given probiotic yogurt for 20–24 weeks developed thick, lustrous fur in just a few days.

11. Peppers

Vitamin C can help with the absorption of iron, so it may help people experiencing iron deficiency associated hair loss, according to a 2019 study.

But sweet and spicy peppers are a great way to get the vitamin.

12. Berries

Most of the suggestions so far have been savoury foods, but fruit can also be a great way to load up on vitamins your locks will love.

Berries – think strawberries, blackberries, raspberries, and blueberries – are loaded in vitamin C, are citrus fruit like oranges.

14. Broccoli

You might have moaned when you were told to eat broccoli as a child.

But the crunchy green vegetable, along with kale, sprouts and collard greens, are teaming with nutrients that will make your hair happy.

They include vitamin A, vitamin C, folic acid, and biotin.


Hair loss is usually nothing to worry your head over.

It's pretty normal to lose a good few hairs daily – between 50 to 100.

That might seem like a lot but your scalp should automatically start re-sprouting anything you shed throughout the day, according to the British Association of Dermatologists.

This means the total number of hairs on our head remains constant.

But if you're noticing more shedding than usual or any bald spots or inflammationscalp inflammation, it may be worth speaking to a GP about it.

According to the NHS, excessive hair shedding could be caused by:

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  • an illness
  • stress
  • cancer treatment
  • weight loss
  • iron deficiency

It's worth getting a medical opinion about what may be causing your hair loss.

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