Complete nutrition with Dr Megan Rossi
We have roughly 120,000 hairs on our heads that need a good, healthy balanced diet to help keep them strong and nourished. Just like skin, the condition of your hair can be an outward sign of inside health. One of the secrets to healthy hair is good hair nutrition, which includes a balanced diet of protein, vitamins and minerals, as well as the way you care for and treat your hair. We have our Genesis hair health expert Dr Megan Rossi @theguthealthdoctor on hand to give you the best gut health advice to help leave you with gorgeous radiant locks.
What is the best diet to ensure we have healthy hair?
“As with every part of the body, having a nutritious diet is incredibly important for hair health. For optimal hair health, I recommend having a very varied diet, getting as much plant-based diversity as you can, with a broad range of nutrients including a good balance of macronutrients (carbohydrate, protein and fat). While there’s not one specific ‘healthy hair’ diet, the Mediterranean diet has been shown to be very nutritious, incorporating all six plant-based food groups, including fruit, vegetables, wholegrains, legumes (beans and pulses), nuts and seeds. It also contains extra virgin olive oil, fermented dairy, fatty fish and small amounts of meat, providing many of the micronutrients your body needs to have healthy hair.”
Are there any vitamins or supplements we should take for our hair?
“For the majority of people, I recommend aiming to get all of your nutrients from whole foods, rather than supplements. Iron, zinc, vitamin B and D are thought to be key to keeping your hair healthy and you can get all of these nutrients by having a varied, balanced diet. Taking supplements such as Vitamin A and selenium in excess may actually cause hair-fall. These so called ‘toxic’ doses can occur when people are taking multiple supplements, unlike supplements; however, it is very difficult to get a toxic level from eating whole foods as Mother Nature has packaged these nutrients up in our food in much safer doses.
When it comes to collagen supplements, which are disappointingly often touted as promoting hair growth, there is no clinical evidence to support their benefit. Yes, protein is important for healthy hair and collagen is a protein, but your body does not differentiate whether this comes from whole foods containing protein, or expensive collagen supplements. My recommendation: go for the whole foods and save your money. One supplement that could be worth exploring is vitamin D. Interestingly for vitamin D, your skin actually produces most of it, however in the UK the government recommends taking a supplement during the winter, when we’re not getting enough sunlight.” We will be adding lots of healthy nutritious food to our shopping trolley ASAP!