Be healthy to have beautiful hair!

Be healthy to have beautiful hair!

Healthy hair doesn’t just depend on the cosmetic care you give it. Your lifestyle and diet are just as important!

Man or woman: which nutrients promote beautiful hair?

Keratin is used to make the cells of the skin, nails and hair known as phanera, or the dander. This helix-shaped fibrous protein accounts for 90% of hair structure. The cuticle, the outer part of the hair, is mainly made up of keratin. 

But what is this molecule made from? 18 amino acids, including large quantities of cysteine and methionine, two sulphur-containing amino acids that enable the formation of disulphide bridges that ensure the cohesion, strength and elasticity of keratin fibres. Lysine, located in the inner part of the hair, is responsible for its volume and shape. Lysine deficiency can result in hair that is too fine, brittle and lacks hold.

All the above amino acids, as well as the trace elements and vitamins in the B group, are involved in the synthesis of keratin by the concentrated keratinocytes in the hair root. 

Beauty routines alone are not enough to maintain beautiful hair, support its growth and limit hair loss. They need to be well “nourished” like the rest of the body. A balanced diet provides sufficient quantities of the micronutrients needed for healthy hair, in particular iron, zinc, amino acids and vitamins.

A balanced diet for beautiful hair 

Proteins enable keratin production. Ideally, they should account for 10-20% of total daily energy intake (TEI). 

B vitamins, most notably vitamin B8, promote the integration of cysteine into keratin.
They act against oxidative stress and reduce hair loss.

Vitamins A and C help protect the capillary fibre with its resistance and hydration. 

Vitamin E is essential for limiting oxidative stress thanks to its modulatory effect on the damage produced by the free radicals. However, only a brief exposure to the suns rays can mead to the skin tissue reserves becoming depleted.  The scalp is not immune from this phenomenon. In the event of oxidative stress, the reaction can be the production of dandruff and excess sebum.

A deficiency in iron intake can lead to widespread hair loss. The problem is short-term and may be caused by hormonal changes, stress, an increased need for iron in women and/or an unbalanced diet.

Zinc and copper stimulate hair growth.

Beautiful hair starts with a healthy diet!

Which foods ensure beautiful hair? 

You should eat:

  • Vegetables which are full of vitamins: To prevent hair loss, you should eat a diet enriched with mushrooms, pulses and fruit. Green leafy vegetables , orange fruits and vegetables which are rich in vitamin A and C. Vitamin E is present in hazelnuts, almonds and other oilseeds found in vegetable oils. To avoid split ends, put something plant-based on your menu!
  • A portion of meat, fish or eggs provides protein: While eggs, fish and meat are commonly consumed, pulses and other grains provide a quality substitute for animal proteins without any of the drawbacks. In a vegetarian meal, it's a good idea to mix pulses and grains for a balanced intake of vitamins, amino acids and trace elements. Protein is the hairs best friend...but not the only one!
  • A selection of foods rich in trace elements: Iron is usually associated with eating meat and offal, but algae (sea lettuce, spirulina), aromatic herbs, pulses (quinoa, lentils) and cocoa also contain significant quantities. These ingredients are excellent way to increase iron intake. Dietary sources of zinc are mainly found in seafood, soya and wholemeal grains, as well as wholemeal bread fermented with natural sourdough.

Which dietary supplements help to have beautiful hair?

Where there is an imbalance in the diet, hormonal changes, stress or a polluted environment, micronutrients can be provided via dietary supplements. Their ingredients are amino acids, including cysteine and methionine, vitamin B8, zinc and manganese, as well as vitamin C. Particularly useful when the seasons change.

How can I achieve beautiful hair naturally?

As well as a healthy diet, a healthy lifestyle is essential for dream hair! Stress induces cortisol production, which is known to affect the function and cyclical regulation of the hair follicle. Women are more prone to hair loss under stress. Taking care of yourself and your emotional state by participating in relaxing activities is a good idea. Meditation, relaxation therapy, cardiac coherence, mental awareness, etc. Nowadays, everyone has access to ways of calming the mind. A good sleep also contributes to leaving less hair on your pillowcase! Fatigue increases the effects of cellular oxidative stress in the long-term. The scalp may be irritated, the capillary bulb, which has less blood supply, is weakened and the hair shaft becomes less well hydrated. Result: finer, drier, more breakable hair.

6 tips for healthier hair à no dietary advice?

  1. Every day, morning and evening, brush your hair gently with a boar bristle brush.
  2. Choose a sulphate-free shampoo that is suitable for your hair and that is not aggressive. Hair conditioner is not essential but may be useful for repairing your hair, just like hair masks and balms which have a deep-acting effect on the hair. For silky hair, jojoba oil repairs and nourishes the hair fibre.
  3. Rinsing your hair in cold water for a prolonged period of time helps the cuticle to contract, protecting the hair shaft. The hair will become more resistant to exterior aggression (UV, pollution, etc.). You could also use a protective spray.
  4. If you must use a hair dryer or any other heated appliance, opt for a lower temperature. It is better to leave your hair to dry naturally after having towel-dried it.
  5. Trim the ends of your hair, on a regular basis, by approx. 1cm, this encourages new hair growth. 
  6. Use plant-based hair dyes to add shine to your hair.

Long, grey, fine, curly or straight: how can you achieve beautiful hair?

Although healthy hair depends on a number of common factors: scalp health, diet, lifestyle, environmental pollutants... each hair type requires specific care. Ask your hairdresser or pharmacist for advice when choosing the best shampoo and dietary supplements.

  • Long or straight hair: brush every morning and evening, trim the ends once per month, untangle frequently, shampoo every 3 days with a neutral shampoo and lukewarm water, use a nourishing hair mask.
  • Fine hair: protect from exterior aggression (UV, pollution), use a specific shampoo and conditioner to provide deep-acting hair protection.
  • Grey hair: one wash per week with a blue shampoo (prevents yellowing).
  • Curly hair: hydration is the key to keeping curly hair looking good, jojoba or yoghurt masks provide good regenerating nutrients, no more than 3 shampoos per week, allow hair to dry naturally.

1.Thom E. Stress and the Hair Growth Cycle: Cortisol-Induced Hair Growth Disruption. J Drugs Dermatol. 2016 Aug 1;15(8):1001-4. PMID: 27538002.