How your diet can help to grow strong nails and hair
When it comes to beauty, many of us focus on skincare and various creams, hoping to get that elusive, youthful glow.
Yet our faces aren’t the only thing that we need to consider when it comes to looking our most glamorous. Instead, many of us also suffer with weak nails, or dry, brittle hair and may need a helping hand to look our most beautiful.
Diet effects on nails and hair
There are lots of people who believe that our hair and nails are actually a sign of how healthy we are, or how healthy our diet is. For example, diets high in inflammatory foods can affect collagen, keratin and elastin, which are all key in healthy skin, hair and nails. Stress can also trigger endless problems when it comes to our locks and nails.
Yet, whether you suffer from dull, lifeless hair or have nails which split and snap, there is plenty you can do to help. There are now lots of products and supplements which can give strong, healthy nails, or luscious, thick hair – and our diet can help us along the way, too!
For starters, antioxidants such as vitamins A, C, and E are crucial. It’s also useful to supplement with Biotin, a B-complex vitamin, as well as manganese and selenium and fatty acids such as omega-3s. Deficiencies of these nutrients can cause all sorts of problems with the hair and nails. However, there are some extra key things you can do to help.
Tips to give you strong nails and glowing hair:
Add some Collagen
Many of us know all about the wonders of collagen supplements to help smooth out skin, ease fine lines and delay the signs of ageing. Yet, the benefits of collagen are not just skin deep – it can boost hair and nail health, too.
As a naturally-occurring protein, collagen is crucial to healthy nails and hair, but it declines with age. Our award-winning Collagen Shots contain hydrolysed collagen, which can help to strengthen nails and even boost hair growth. They also contain hyaluronic acid, AKA the Fountain of Youth, as well as super antioxidant acai berry, hair and nail-loving vitamin C and zinc and copper.
Get More Protein
Protein is vital for healthy hair and nails. After all, our hair and nails are mostly made up of protein! Because of this, It’s important to pile plates high with protein – think lean meat, such as chicken, fish or even vegetarian sources of protein such as chickpeas, lentils and our Protein Smoothies, which come in three delicious flavours and contain an almighty 21g of pea protein per serving.
When it comes to our hair and nails, many of us don’t think about treating them gently. We’ll blast our hair with the drier, run straighteners through it, or bleach and colour treat it. Our nails don’t often fare much better! They will often be coated with varnishes, soaked in washing up liquid, or cleaned with harsh chemicals and soap.
For the healthiest hair and nails, treat them with kindness – avoid blasting the hair with heat-based products whenever possible, use sun protection sprays on your locks, and wear cotton lined gloves when cleaning the dishes. Better still, let your other half take care of the dishes for once…!
Vitamins A, C & E
A diet full of goodness and nutrients is crucial when it comes to our beauty regime. In particular, our hair and nails thrive when we eat plenty of vitamins, especially vitamins A, C and E.
Vitamin A is a fat-soluble vitamin and a powerful antioxidant. It’s important for fighting inflammation, promotes tissue repair, strengthens bones and can also give us healthier, glowing skin – as well as strong hair and nails! You can get more of this vitamin by eating foods such as carrots, sweet potato, kale, dried apricots, butternut squash, spinach and broccoli. Why not try our Carrot Fries for a delicious, vitamin-A rich snack or side dish?
Vitamin C is well known for its immune-boosting powers, but it’s also crucial for what’s on the outside, too! Vitamin C helps to build collagen and also acts as a powerful antioxidant, which we need for healthy hair and nails. It also helps our bodies to absorb more iron, which keeps locks strong and healthy. Foods high in vitamin C include red peppers, citrus fruits, kiwi fruits and berries. Why not try our Protein Smoothie Boats, which contain plenty of vitamin C-rich strawberries?
Vitamin E is another natural antioxidant which boosts collagen production and also helps the body’s anti-inflammatory response. Try snacking on vitamin E-rich almonds, which are rich in amino acids needed for collagen growth, as well as calcium, which we need for strong hair and nails.
Snack on Pumpkin Seeds
Pumpkin seeds are one of the most nutritious snacks you can eat – and they are a well-known beauty booster! They’re rich in protein, iron, magnesium, potassium and biotin, which are all needed for luscious locks and strong nails. They are also alkaline-forming, which supports detoxification and healthy pH levels.
Essential fatty acids, such as omega-3s, help to nurture and nourish hair and nails. They can help to make hair appear shinier and healthier, while also making nails less brittle. Foods rich in omega-3s include pumpkin seeds, chia seeds and salmon. We have plenty of omega-3-rich recipes on our website if you want some inspiration.
However, you could also include an omega-3 supplement in your diet, such, such as our vegan-friendly Aliol. Our Aliol supplement is a rich source of both DHA and EPA, which come from marine algae. It’s an essential supplement because the body cannot make omega-3 on its own, and it works to nourish every cell within the body, also contributing to brain health, reducing inflammation and maintaining heal.