Common sense when you choose your afro hair diet
Know your natural food sources
NOTE – The food types listed below are given as examples. There are many foods listed here that can be substituted with other foods if you can’t find these foods where you live or if you prefer other foods. Pay attention to the nutrients that the hair needs as that is what is important. With a little research, you will come across many other foods that are also rich in nutrients. Explore your own traditional culture for foods that were recommended by parents and ancestors for their health benefits and build your own list.
Nutrient – Beta carotene. Food source – Spinach, kale, carrots, cantaloupe (sweet melon), mangoes, pumpkin. Benefits to the hair – Used by the body to make Vitamin A which is essential for the proper functioning of ALL body cells. Aids production of natural oils that sustain your scalp. Low Vitamin A can result in some forms of itchy dandruff.
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Nutrient – Biotin. Food source – Lentils. Benefits to the hair – It is important to the process of building keratin – the main protein in hair and nails. Low levels may result in brittle nails and hair loss although there are other causes for this.
Nutrient – Calcium. Food source – Milk and dairy products. Benefits to the hair – Calcium is one of the most abundant minerals in the body and is critical for blood circulation and nerve function.
Copper. Food source – Liver, beef, seafood, beans, whole grains, soy flour, avocados, barley, garlic, nuts, oats, molasses, and lentils. Drinking water from copper pipes and occasionally cooking food in copper pots helps. Benefits to the hair – Copper is found in every cell in the human body. In small quantities, copper in the diet also helps the proper utilization of iron in the formation of blood. Hair loss is sometimes a sign of acute copper deficiency. Too much copper is toxic to the body.
Folate. Food source – Spinach. Benefits to the hair – Helps red blood cells to develop in a healthy way and supports the nervous system including the brain. Especially important for menstruating women who must replace the blood each month.
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