Everyday Superfoods for Better Skin, Nails, and Hair
If you’re looking for a way to have longer hair, stronger nails and glowing skin – look no further than your produce department.
We all know that eating the rainbow of fruits and veggies ensures our bodies receive the proper nutrition needed to be healthy – inside and out. But did you know that there are key micronutrients, vitamins and minerals found in specific foods that provide essential components for healthy hair, skin and nails?
While these parts of our bodies may seem very different in texture, they are all made up of similar cells – the proteins keratin, collagen and elastin – all of which require the same nutrients. Those proteins are supported by a diet rich in healthy fats, iron, zinc, and antioxidant vitamins (think vitamin C, E and beta-carotene).
Below is a list of the seven foods with the highest amount of key nutrients, so that you can eat toward healthier hair, stronger nails and glowing skin. All you have to do is stock your fridge and start eating!
Salmon is loaded with vitamin D, protein and omega-3 fatty acids that promote hair growth by keeping your scalp healthy. Eating one serving of salmon, tuna or mackerel two to three times a week will meet the recommended 250–500 milligrams (mg) of marine-sourced omega-3s (EPA, DHA) per day.
Nuts and Seeds
Nuts and seeds are a good source of protein as well as vitamins E and B; especially almonds, sunflower seeds and walnuts. Other great sources of omega-6 fatty acids include walnuts and linseed.
And not just for weekend toast. Avocados are a fantastic source of vitamin E, vitamin B, omega-3s, fiber and vitamin C – talk about a glow up.
Oats are one of the best whole grain sources of these micronutrients since they contain protein and biotin, which is a B vitamin that helps support keratin development. Bonus points? They help you stay full longer after eating your meal.
Berries such as blackberries, cherries and blueberries are all loaded with antioxidants, minerals and vitamins – including vitamin C, which is essential to collagen production to prevent hair breakage and increase cell turnover.
Dark Leafy Greens
Greens such kale and spinach come to mind for most shoppers when they think of getting this part of the rainbow into their diet, as both are an excellent source of vitamin C and iron, which helps to maintain skin’s elasticity.
Vegetables with an orange or red pigment, including sweet potatoes, tomatoes, carrots and red peppers are filled with vitamin A – a key antioxidant in protecting skin from harmful UV damage.
We know everyone has heard this before, but fluids really are the key to optimal health. Good hydration (water) is essential for gut health and overall well-being. Be sure to drink at least 1.5-2L (51-68 fl. oz.) per day. Your glossy hair will thank you for it.
There are plenty of supplements that claim to boost the health of hair, skin and nails, but they aren't actually necessary. Through good nutrition and healthy eating habits, you can feel your best inside and out.