10 Top Foods for Healthier Hair


Your Hair Needs These Nutrients

Close-up of woman brushing her hair
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Beautiful shiny hair requires more than a good shampoo and conditioner. Healthy hair relies on certain essential nutrients, including protein, omega-3 fatty acids, iron, zinc, calcium, biotin and vitamins A, C, E, and D.

I know that's a lot of vitamins and minerals and so on, but eating a healthy balanced diet should provide you with all these nutrients. But, just to be sure, I've found ten foods that are especially beneficial.  




Photo: Alexandra Shytsman

Salmon and tuna are rich in protein, omega-3 fatty acids, and vitamin D, but even though they’re rich in omega-3 fats, they’re not high in total fats or calories. Add salmon or tuna to a fresh green salad or enjoy them as sushi. Canned tuna and salmon can be kept on hand and used in a number of recipes. Herring, sardines, and trout are also rich in omega-3s.


Dark Leafy Greens


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Spinach, Swiss chard, and kale are excellent sources of vitamin A, iron, calcium and vitamin C.  They’re also low in calories so they’ll also help you keep a trim waistline. Use raw green as a base for your salads or sauté them with a little olive oil and garlic and serve as a healthy side.




Photo: Alexandra Shytsman

Almonds, pecans, and walnuts are rich in plant proteins, biotin, minerals and vitamin E. Walnuts are also a good source of omega-3 fatty acids. Eat raw walnuts as a snack or top your salads with toasted pecans. Sprinkle some almonds on green beans or other cooked veggies. 


Sweet Potatoes and Yams

Sweet potato

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Sweet potatoes and yams are packed with vitamin A, plus they contain vitamin C, iron, and calcium.  Serve whipped sweet potatoes as a tasty side dish or bake sweet potatoes and top them with a small amount of molasses to add even more calcium. 




Photo: Alexandra Shytsman

Eggs are an excellent source of protein and biotin, and they contain vitamins A and E, plus some iron and calcium. Eggs produced by hens fed special diets, called ‘omega eggs’ are also good sources of omega-3 fatty acids.




Photo: Alexandra Shytsman

Dry beans, lentils, and soy are all rich in protein, zinc, iron and biotin. Baked beans can be used as a topping for baked white or sweet potatoes.  Or serve lentil soup with a fresh green salad. 



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Oysters are extremely high in zinc plus they’re a rich source of protein. Enjoy raw oysters on the half shell, prepared as Oysters Rockefeller, or make oyster stew for dinner. 


Milk and Dairy

Cottage cheese

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Dairy products are high in protein, vitamin D, and calcium. Go with low or non-fat milk and cheese to cut back on some of the calories. Serve Greek yogurt with honey, berries, and nuts for a delicious breakfast or healthy dessert. Alternatively, milk made from almonds, soy or rice is also a good choice.


Red Bell Peppers

Red Bell Pepper

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Red bell peppers are high in vitamins A and C, plus they’re super low in calories. Top a salad with raw red pepper slices, roast them with an assortment of veggies or add them to a stir-fry. 


Lean Beef

Filet mignon has nutrients that are good for healthy hair.
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Beef is an excellent source of protein and zinc. It can be high in fats and calories, so choose a leaner cut like a filet mignon. Grass-fed beef has a better fatty acid profile. Add thin slices of steak to a salad or use lean cuts of beef in a stir-fry.

United States Department of Agriculture Agricultural Research Service National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference Release 28.

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