Vitamins are needed for the general well-being of the whole body. However, sometimes an index of a healthy and beautiful body is a healthy looking hair. This is because the hair like the various parts of the body is made of cells that require nourishment for effective growth. This is further buttressed by the fact certain kind of nutritional deficiencies manifest in form of hair loss. Though the hair looks simple, it possesses mini structures that should be nourished with the adequate amounts of hair vitamins for proper functioning. Some of this structure includes the hair shaft; this is the part of the hair that is seen. It consists primarily of the keratin, the hair main protein that ensures that the hair is strong and doesn’t fall out easily. The nutrients required for the growth of the hair supplied through a structure known as the hair follicle. This part of the hair has lots of nerves and also is made up of the papilla and the hair bulb. The nourishment the hair follicle receives affects the functioning of the sebaceous gland as well as the amount of sebum or natural oil it produces to keep the hair moist and supple.
However, the awareness of most people regarding the effects of nutrients like vitamins on the health, growth, and appearance of the hair is very poor. Most people might be cautious about what they eat but they don’t really consider the hair in their dietary choices. They are often in ignorance as regards the roles of vitamins in the luxuriant growth of the hair as well as maintaining smooth metabolism in the hair cells. This review looks out the roles of different vitamins to ensure excellent growth of the hair. The next lines give insight regarding these vitamins.
Vitamin B7 (Biotin)
Biotin is gradually becoming the most used vitamin in supplements prepared for quicker hair growth. The reason for this is not far-fetched, as it provides the hair with adequate glucose, helps the breakdown of proteins into amino acids, which are the precursors of keratin, the hair protein. It also repairs damaged hair shingles due to the cumulative effects of the excessive use of shampoos, prolonged exposure to the sun, blow drying and heat.
As a water soluble vitamin, the body can’t store it, hence the need for consumption of food that contains sufficient amounts of biotin for effective growth and other body system functions. Examples of these foods include peanut butter, salmon, mushrooms, salmon avocadoes etc. A good combination for good hair growth is biotin-rich diet and a biotin rich hair supplement.
Vitamin C is known for its numerous benefits it confers to the body ranging from boosting immune system, improving cardiovascular health, reliefs for common colds etc. however, little is known of the role it plays for the hair to grow very well. Vitamin C ensures improves the strength and growth of the hair. As an antioxidant, it prevents free radicals from causing damages on the hair, which make the hair look weak and brittle which leads to breakage and shedding of the hair.
Dietary sources of vitamin C have been proven to be better than vitamin supplements. These sources include broccoli, vegetables, tomatoes, kale red bell pepper, kiwi fruits, strawberries, and other oranges.
The B Vitamins
Also known as the vitamin B complex, this group of vitamins is made up of eight vitamins such as the B1, B2, B3, B5, B12, B6, and B9. These complex of vitamins collectively play a huge role in the maintenance of the health and the growth of the hair. It aids the creation of red blood cells which transport oxygen and necessary nutrients into the scalp as well as the hair follicles. When used individually, they produce various effects on the hairs ‘health. Niacin helps in promoting the growth of the hair by providing nourishment of the hair. Since they are water soluble, it can easily to be filtered out from the body via urine. Care must be taken to taken to ensuring that our diet contains copious amount of these vitamins. Source of these vitamins as regards whole foods are white meat, avocadoes, mushrooms, turkey, dark leafy vegetables.
All cells of the body including the hair cells require vitamin A in adequate amount for proper functioning. Vitamin A enhances the secretion of sebum by the sebaceous gland. Sebum serves as natural oil that moisturizes the skin prevents it from drying and gives it a supple appearance. However, it is important to note that excessive use of vitamin A supplement could be counter-productive as regards the growth of the hair.
This sunshine vitamin helps prevents alopecia, a condition characterized with hair loss. It also aids in the creation of new pores or follicles where novel hair can grow. It also helps in the resuscitation of dormant follicles which usually leads to baldness. Vitamin D can be obtained by exposure of the body to sunlight, and can be supplemented with some dietary sources which include eggs, mushroom, milk, fatty fish and other healthy and proven supplements.
The ability of vitamin E to improve the growth of the hair has been linked to the presence of a powerful anti-oxidant known as tocotrienols. This antioxidant has been implicated in a health scalp and in the prevention and recovery of person having alopecia. Vitamin E also prevents the inflammation of the hair scalp by ensuring proper circulation of blood and oxygen in the hairs scalp. Hair experts recommend the application of vitamin E containing oil into the scalp on a weekly basis to ensure a luxuriant hair growth. Other sources of vitamin include almonds, seeds and nuts, broccoli, spinach and avocadoes.
Finally, studies have proven that the major cause of hair loss apart from other genetic factors is usually due to nutritional deficiencies. Therefore, the consumption of these vitamins stated above ensures a luxuriant growth of hair. And remember the best and the healthiest way of obtaining these vitamins is through whole and balanced foods.