What Nutrients Are Good for Hair Growth: Key Vitamins and Minerals for Hair Health

Written by Our Editorial Team
Last updated

Healthy, vibrant hair depends on a balanced diet rich in nutrients. Certain vitamins, minerals, proteins and oils support scalp health and promote follicles to undergo optimal hair growth cycles. Addressing nutrient deficiencies through whole foods and supplements can aid in stimulating new hair growth over time.

What nutrients are good for hair growth?

Key nutrients that research shows contribute significantly to hair follicles include proteins, zinc, biotin, iron, vitamin D, and omega-3 fatty acids.

Protein

Protein forms the basic building blocks of hair through keratin. Good sources include eggs, fish, nuts, legumes, dairy. Aim for 0.36g protein per pound of body weight daily.

Zinc

Important for cellular regeneration and sebum production. Top food sources include oysters, beef, pumpkin seeds, yogurt. Aim for 11mg daily from food.

Biotin

Part of keratin production within follicles. Eggs, salmon, nuts, and mushrooms contain biotin. 500-2,000mcg daily supplement helps some people.

Iron

Supports oxygen delivery to follicles. Lean red meat, lentils, leafy greens contain non-heme iron. 8mg daily for women, 8mg for men.

Vitamin D

Helps regulate hair growth cycles. 15 minutes of sun daily or supplement 3,000IU. Fatty fish, eggs, mushrooms naturally contain Vitamin D.

Omega-3s

Promote scalp circulation. Fatty fish, chia seeds, walnuts, flaxseeds contain ALA and EPA/DHA forms of omega-3s.

In addition to the above power players, other supporting nutrients include selenium, vitamins A, B6, C, copper, and magnesium.

Foods containing multiple nutrients:

The following whole foods package several of the above nutrients important for hair in one place:

  • Salmon - protein, omega-3s, vitamin D, selenium, B vitamins
  • Sardines - great for zinc, copper, B12, vitamin D
  • Chicken - good protein, biotin, selenium, B3
  • Spinach - iron, magnesium, folate, vitamins A, C, K
  • Tuna - protein, selenium, iodine, vitamin B3
  • Avocado - healthy fats, vitamins E, K, copper, folate

Eating a balanced whole foods diet emphasized around grass-fed/wild meats, fatty fish, nuts and produce nourishes hair follicles effectively from the inside out.

Nutrient supplement considerations:

If diet falls short, supplements under medical guidance can help optimize levels of: zinc, biotin, iron, omega-3s (DHA/EPA), and vitamins D, B5, and silica.

Consistency over time is key to notice improvements in hair growth rate, density, strength and appearance as the body's nutrient status improves supporting follicles wholeheartedly.

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