We feed our bodies, and that food affects not only our general physical health but our skin and hair as well. How direct is the relationship between nutrition and hair?
Experts say that, since the average scalp grows hair half an inch a month (if it were only one hair growing, it would grow 250 feet in one day!), normal hair growth requires a constant supply of nourishment. The food we eat is the primary source of nutrition, and it is the fuel required to "drive" the living cells. If we don't eat enough nutritious food, then our hair will also be deprived of nourishment. As a matter of fact, some doctors use the condition of your hair as a symptomatic measure of other conditions-for example, hair loss may be a sign of anemia, and both hair loss and dandruff could be a sign of stress. Moreover, thin and sparse hair could be a result of a vitamin and mineral deficiency. We are what we eat!
This means, first of all, eating well-balanced meals-that seems to always be the answer, doesn't it? But it's so for a reason. If you eat well, the results will show on your body and in your hair. And if you abuse your body-these results will also show, and you won't like them. For example, a lack of iodine can lead to a thinning and loss of hair. You also need sulfur (available in foods with high-quality protein, such as meat, fish, eggs and milk) for proper hair growth. Balanced meals means just that-foods with vitamins, minerals, proteins and plenty of water. Hair needs a constant supply of good proteins in the diet-this is not an option but a must!
Remember, you can condition hair from the outside, but you must also nourish it from the inside. So minimize the no-no's (foods high in sugar, fat and processed chemicals) and emphasize the nutritious (those high in proteins, natural carbohydrates, vitamins and water). For further information on a well-balanced diet, you may want to refer to the diet chapter in The Body Principal.
And a reminder one more time-never ever go on a crash diet! Besides ruining your health, it is terrible for your skin and your hair. Don't do it!