Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Your HAIR is what you EAT

We all suffer from hair and scalp issues at one point or another even if we have seemingly perfect hair. Believe it or not, diet plays a huge role in not only the health of your body, but the health of your hair as well. Have you ever heard the expression 'You are what you eat'? Well, your hair is what you eat as well! I've suffered from breakage, dryness and although I have done a decent job thus far at combating those issues, I still suffer from SD. Many of us in the loc community tend to have this common misconception early on that leads us to thinking we don't need to do much to our hair because it's matted so it won't make a difference. I am guilty of this as well. It is true that natural hair/locs are not as high maintenance as relaxed hair but we still need to keep up with our moisture content above all things. MOISTURE imbalance is one of the top problems among women with kinkier textured hair and therefore leads to brittleness which then leads to breakage which keeps us from retaining any growth. One point that I want to bring up here is that while you should be nourishing your body from the inside to keep moisture balance up to par; at times it can be very necessary to apply a water-based moisturizer to the hair since diet will not cure your hair's moisture needs overnight. Remember that when using a WATER-BASED moisturizer (try to stay away from fillers like mineral oil and petroleum, etc), you should use a light oil after applying your moisturizer to keep the moisture locked in. Oil isn't a moisturizer because the oil molecules are too large to penetrate the pores of the hair which is why the hair usually feels "coated" or "greasy" afterward. Oil should ONLY be used sparingly for locking your moisturizer in the hair.

WATER is your friend. Water helps hair maintain its elasticity and moisture content. If you want to start retaining your growth so use and drink water.

EAT WHOLE FOODS. Things like beans, vegetables, fruits, grains. You need vitamins for the health of the hair as well as Iron, Zinc and biotin. Stay away from too much high sodium and sugar. You should have a balanced diet. Look at the food pyramid for starters. Supplements will work if you are not able to consume certain types of food for any reason but I prefer whole foods because they are natural sources of vitamins and minerals. You don't have to follow a perfect diet but just make sure you make healthy choices along with the not-so-healthy ones :-) An excellent website for the foods we need for our hair is here: http://www.growafrohairlong.com/foods.html.

 Please note that when I use the word "you" I really mean "we". I am learning along with everyone else but I like to share my findings with anyone who can benefit from it. There are plenty of websites online that will tell you exactly what to eat to get the vitamins and minerals needed to promote a healthy head of hair. This post was just to get you thinking and moving in the right direction in case you are suffering from hair loss, breakage, dandruff or brittleness.

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1 comment:

  1. Great post! I always appreciate nutrition education :)