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Article: Foods That Support Hair Growth

Foods That Support Hair Growth
hair care

Foods That Support Hair Growth

Have you ever noticed that whenever you’re stressed, sick or experiencing hormonal changes, one of the first tell-tale signs that something is wrong comes from your hair health? Whether that may be shedding, hair loss or lack of shine, your hair seems to be one of the first things to be affected when something is going on inside your body. Therefore, it would make sense that the food we eat and how we fuel our bodies, can have a direct impact on how quickly and efficiently we can achieve our hair goals. Whats more, It doesn’t need to be over complicated with powders, tablets and hair growth gummies - the key lies in what you put on your plate. 

How Does Food Affect Our Hair?

Maria Sotiriou, co-founder of SILKE London, hairstylist with over 37 years of experience and overall hair expert explains how this works. She says: “Individually our bodies are all so different, and that includes how our bodies utilise the food we consume. But one thing we all have in common is that our hair is one of the last areas to receive the vitamins and minerals we’re consuming. That means that if there’s any drop in those vitamins, minerals and proteins, your hair is negatively impacted straight away.” 

With long, mermaid hair making a big hair trend comeback this year, many people’s hair goals are centred around growth. Growing your hair can feel like the hardest and most drawn-out task, but knowing what we know about how food fuels your hair’s health, there are a few things you can focus on in your diet to enhance, aid, and even speed up this process. Maria says: “Similar to general health advice, for hair growth, you need to focus on three key things; protein, green vegetables and healthy fats. I would also always recommend increasing your water intake too!”. If you’re on a general health kick ahead of the summer, knowing that these health ideals are also promoting your hair growth may act as extra motivation for you! 

How Can I Integrate Growth Boosting Ingredients?

Here at SILKE London, we’re all about minimal effort and maximum results, so we’ve done the legwork for you and listed all the things you can add to your diet to hit those three key points from Maria.

Hitting your protein goals

By now we all know that meat and fish contain high levels of protein, but here are some tips, tricks and easy switches you may not have tapped into yet. 

  • Integrate protein with every snack. This is easy with options such as nuts, nut butter, cottage cheese, eggs etc. One of our favourite options is sliced apple with nut butter! 
  • Think outside the meat box. Beans and lentils are super high in protein, so just because you eat a low meat, vegetarian or vegan diet, your protein intake doesn’t have to suffer. Beans and lentils are also super high in vitamins and minerals such as vitamin C, folate and magnesium, which animal products don’t have but are great for your hair. 
  • Swap out sugar at breakfast. Many of us like to enjoy sugary options to start the day such as cereal and pastries, but switching to a more high protein option will help you hit your daily protein intake. And no, you don’t have to switch to eggs or meat, we love combinations such as greek yogurt with seeds and fruit, it’s a great compromise whilst still giving you that sweetness to start the day. 
  • Speaking of yogurt, an easy switch is to swap your regular yogurt for greek yogurt. Greek yogurt contains twice the amount of protein in a regular serving than regular yogurt, so it’s a no brainer. If you find it a little bitter, just add some organic honey! 
  • Shop smart by picking up easy-to-use protein options. If you’re on the go and don’t always have time to prepare things such as meat or lentils, easy to use options can really assist with keeping your protein intake high even when you’re busy. We always add canned beans, nut and seed snack packets, sliced cheese and canned seafood to our weekly shops. 
  • Experiment with high protein desserts and snacks. Recently we’ve fallen into a ‘gym lover's dessert’ TikTok rabbit hole, next thing you know we’re making dark chocolate and frozen greek yogurt ‘ice cream’ as a weekend treat (we would highly recommend it by the way!). 

 Up your intake of green vegetables

  • Grab a smoothie. If you’re not a huge fan of the ‘super healthy’ green smoothie and juice options, pick an option you love and add some spinach. Spinach doesn’t have a super strong taste so it’s easily hidden in other fruity or sweet options. 

  • Add a green to your carb or sauce. Simply popping some greens into your rice or pasta as you’re cooking not only adds a green to your meal, but tricks our brains into thinking we’re not adding an extra thing because we don’t have to cook it separately - we’re all about minimal effort. Same goes for cooking sauces and stir frys! 

  • Top up on your favourites. By making a small switch you can add greens into your favourite picks, for example, instead of choosing exclusively meat toppings on a pizza, add a green veg into the mix. 

Healthy fats - aside from hair growth, these are amazing for your heart, we subscribe to that. 

  • Choose a good oil. Whether it be for cooking or drizzling, pick out a healthy fat oil and you’ll be adding in those extra nutrients with little to no extra effort. 
  • Nut butter and nuts in general are a great source of healthy fat and are also high in fibre, magnesium, vitamin E and folate. They’re also super versatile and can work just as well in baked goods as hearty soups. 
  • Avocado’s, the millennial staple, and also a great source of healthy fat. We know we don’t need to tell you twice but incorporate them into everything from your smoothies, to your breakfasts and snacks! 
  • Just add olives. Did you know that olives are an amazing source of healthy fat? They’re the perfect afternoon snack or addition to a salad, I suppose in a Martini counts too right? 

Having a high protein, green and healthy fat full diet doesn’t mean going without anything, it’s about playing around and experimenting so you can still eat what you love, enjoying sweet treats and tending to your cravings, without feeling like you’re missing out on your favourite foods. That’s not to say that every single thing you eat needs to be high in protein and perfect, but if you hit the majority, your hair will thank you for it.

How Else Can I Improve My Hair Health?

Aside from foods, Maria has some additional tips on how to promote hair growth. She explains: Wrapping your hair in 100% silk nightly will nurture growth and nourish your hair. Silk is an ancient fabric which has magical properties, when it’s utilised in hair care it can have transformative results.” 

So how does it work? Silk is a natural material, so instead of drawing moisture out of your hair like abrasive, man-made options, it allows your hair to self-nourish when it’s cocooned. The natural oils produced at your scalp are super hydrating but are often given a bad rep for causing greasy roots. However, when the hair is cocooned the silk allows the natural oils at the scalp to be evenly distributed from root to tip, eliminating greasy roots and hydrating those dryer ends. This makes for super moisturised hair and gives you the ability to go longer between hair washes as you won’t have the appearance of ‘greasy hair’! When your hair is hydrated, it’s not going to snap or break, so you can enjoy healthy growth. This is especially useful for those who have bleached, coloured or brittle hair who find their hair grows to a certain length then doesn’t go any further. That’s because your issues are coming from breakage at the ends of your hair, as opposed to any problems at the scalp. 

Cocooning your hair in silk nightly also encourages your hair cuticles to lay flat, meaning no frizz bedhead come morning, less overall breakage, and damage, looking after, and nurturing the lengths you have and promoting that all important hair growth. Maria goes onto say: “Swapping out your shampoo, conditioner and masks can also have a huge impact on your hair’s growth. I would always recommend salon quality protein options for fine, limp, or weak hair. I would go for less products in your routine overall but invest your budget into purchasing the best options when it comes to the few products I’m actually going to use in my routine.” 

She would also recommend: “Check your hair tools to see if they’re worn and replace them if they are. People tend to use their hair tools over and over until they break, but if they’re worn, they need to be replaced. As soon as coatings and other heated tool tech is breached, you could be exposing your hair to much higher temperatures than you’re aware of causing a lot of unnecessary damage. Personally, if my hair goal was growth, I would try my best to eliminate heated tools all together. I’d do this by opting for heatless methods such as the Heatless Curler Kit. That way you can still enjoy your hair feeling ‘done’, but you don’t have to walk around with natural, air-dried hair as I know this isn’t an option for everyone. The great thing about the Heatless Curler Kit is you can pop it in overnight, it doesn’t require any additional time, and if anything, it saves you time. You can also pop it in and out as many times as you like guilt free if you feel like you need to top up your bouncy curls in between washes.” 

Finally, make the easy switch when it comes to your hair ties. Regular hair ties are infamous for causing damage mid-way down the hair shaft, not great for growing your hair! They’re often made from abrasive fabrics and have metal clasps that can snap, snag and cause kinks in your hair which you’ll then reach for the heated tools to remove. Most people opt for up-do’s when they’re growing out their hair, so this can be a vicious cycle if you’re not using the correct ties. SILKE London Hair Ties are made from 100% silk, they slide in and out of your hair without leaving so much as a kink behind. They also look just as cute on your wrist as they do hold up your pony and there's a colour option for every style, era and vibe.

Bring on the waist grazing lengths come Summer! 

Love, SILKE x

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