Maybe you’ve just had a bad haircut that you want to grow out, or your hair is looking sparse and you’d like it to grow in thicker. The key to growing healthier hair? Eating plenty of protein. Keep reading for our picks for the best sources of protein for hair growth, and learn how protein actually helps with hair growth.
And if you’re looking for an instant fix to cover thinning hair, try Toppik Hair Building Fibers. Toppik Fibers are made of keratin proteins (the same type of protein as in your natural hair) and will make hair look thicker in seconds.
Why Eating Protein is Essential for Hair Growth
Our hair is made out of protein called keratin, so it makes sense that eating protein is essential for hair growth. Our body uses protein for a number of different vital functions.
When we don’t eat enough, our body reroutes the protein we do eat to our essential organs while ignoring non-essential functions, like hair growth. While this defense mechanism keeps us alive when we’re not eating right, it can also result in slowed hair growth or even hair loss.
So how do you know how much protein you need to eat? According to health publishers at Harvard Medical School, an average 50-year-old adult woman needs to eat around 53 grams of protein per day, while the average adult man who generally weigh more than women need to eat around 56 grams of protein per day.
However, these numbers depend on your height, weight and lifestyle. For a more accurate recommendation, ask your doctor how much protein you should be eating.
The Best Protein for Hair Growth
Eggs are a great source of protein and biotin – two essential nutrients for hair growth. Hair follicles require biotin in order to produce keratin, which is one reason this vitamin is often included in hair growth supplements.
Eggs are also a great source of other nutrients for hair growth, including zinc and selenium.
Fatty fish like salmon are excellent sources of protein for hair growth. Not only is salmon rich in protein, but it’s also an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids. A 2015 study in the Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology found a link between eating foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids and increased hair density.
If you don’t like the taste of fish, you can also take a fish oil supplement to get your daily dose of fatty acids.
Nuts aren’t just a great snack, they’re also a great way to get more protein for hair growth into your diet — especially for people who don’t consume animal products.
Additionally, nuts are also excellent sources of nutrients for hair growth like vitamin E, B vitamins, fatty acids, and zinc.
Not only are oysters a great source of protein, but they’re also one of the richest sources of zinc. Zinc is an important hair growth nutrient because it plays a part in protein synthesis and cell division. For this reason, a zinc deficiency has been linked with certain types of hair loss.
Beans are another excellent plant-based source of protein for hair growth. They also contain other essential nutrients for hair growth, including iron. Iron deficiencies are a common source of hair loss, especially in women.
Incorporating more beans into your diet is a great way to make sure you’re getting enough iron (and protein) for healthy hair growth.
Beef is another rich source of protein. In fact, 8 oz of sirloin provides a whopping 58 grams of protein – which meets the daily protein requirement for many adults.
Beef is also rich in hair-healthy nutrients like iron, niacin, and selenium.
Remember, even if you’re eating a healthy diet, your hair can only grow ½ inch per month at maximum. If you’re looking for instant results, Toppik Hair Building Fibers can create the appearance of thicker-looking hair in seconds without waiting for your mane to grow.