You are what you eat, and you are what you don’t eat as well. One of the best indicators a healthy diet is through natural hair and nail strength, and their general appearances. Hair and nails, along with skin, can be the first physical indicators of well-balanced diet rich in proteins, vitamins, in minerals, or one lacking in one or more of the aforementioned areas.
Hair and nails are made of proteins, specifically keratin, collagen, and elastin. Proteins provide the foundations for cells, and so having a protein-rich diet is important in general, but especially so to promote healthy hair and nail growth and appearance. Hair that is shiny and strong along with nails that are glossy and smooth can best be achieved by eating a protein-rich diet. Great sources of protein that are also relatively low in calories, fat, and cholesterol include fish (especially salmon), chicken, eggs, beans, and legumes.
Of equal importance is eating a nutrient-rich diet that covers several important vitamins and minerals. These nutrients help rebuild and repair tissues, helping strengthen hair and nails and helping them recover from any damage quickly and coming back stronger than ever.
Vitamins A and B both help maintain and repair cells, and can be found in protein-rich foods such as tuna, salmon, and other fish, as well as potatoes, turkey, and eggs. Fish oils, either ingested as part of a fishy feast or a supplements, are truly outstanding for growing (and keeping) healthy hair and help nails too, and should be a staple of any diet additionally for their omega-3 properties which help with mental sharpness and improving memory. Kill two birds with one stone by eating protein-rich dishes that also are plentiful in nutrients such as vitamins A and B.
Vitamin C, found in many fruits and juices, is great for building collagen, which is one of the foundational proteins of hair and nails. Vitamin E is found in many vegetables and is great for growing beautiful, healthy-looking hair.
Minerals are important as well, particularly iron and zinc. A lack of iron makes hair brittle and can cause it to fall out, while a lack of zinc causes hair loss and brittle nails. Thankfully, both can be found in protein-rich dishes. Eat fish and legumes for iron and a good helping of protein, and consume dairy products for zinc and some more healthy proteins.
By eating a diet high in healthy proteins and covering important vitamins and minerals, it is not difficult to promote healthy and strong hair and nail growth. Eggs and a glass of milk at breakfast, a bean soup for lunch with a juice smoothie on the side, and a salmon fillet for dinner will have you feeling great, eating plenty of protein, and cover your bases for vitamins and minerals that build the nails and hair you’ve always wanted.