Most of us tend to blame the water and the summer heat here for our thinning hairline. According to an article in the National, 65 percent of expatriates cited hair loss as a problem they experienced only after moving to the UAE, and blamed the country’s hot climate and desalinated water. Many say that the condition of their hair improves when they travel.
Doctors here attest to the fact that they receive more complaints from their patients regarding hair loss during the summer, to an extent of an increase of at least 10 percent. They attribute this increase to a combination of poor diets and a hot climate. The outcome is a significant increase in the flaking of the scalp leading to hair fall. Poor scalp health translates into unhealthy hair.
Though experts say that though water can cause hair to be dry, brittle or to look dull, they say that hair loss cannot be attributed to the poor quality of water. The water we use when showering does not reach the hair follicle as it is located under the skin on the scalp.
While it is true that our hair needs as much protection from the sun as our skin does, there might be a few other culprits that might be responsible for our hair loss.
One factor that we often fail to think of is a poor diet. A busy schedule that is a common feature of our lives in the Middle East means that we often eat on the run, scarfing down fast food that might not have all the nutrients that we might need for healthy skin and hair. This can contribute to the problem of hair loss.
Generally, it is considered normal to lose about 100 to 150 hairs on a daily basis. If greater hair loss is noticed, it is time to seek professional help
Here is a list of 10 foods that you must eat in order to protect your crowning glory:
Eggs serve as a great source of protein and biotin, both of which can promote hair growth. Hair follicles are made up of mostly protein, and hence it is important to ensure that you get adequate protein in your diet. Biotin is needed for the production of a hair protein called keratin and research has indicated that intake of more more biotin can boost hair growth in people having a biotin deficiency. Eggs are also a good source of zinc, selenium and other nutrients which are good for the hair.
Berries like strawberries are a good source of antioxidants and vitamins like vitamin C which can promote hair growth. Vitamin C has strong antioxidant properties and help protect hair follicles against damage from harmful molecules called free radicals. Vitamin C is also used to produce collagen, a protein that helps strengthen hair to prevent it from becoming brittle and breaking and helps the body to absorb iron from the diet. Low iron levels cause anemia, which has been linked to hair loss.
Spinach has plenty of beneficial nutrients like folate, iron, and vitamins A and C, all of can promote hair growth. Spinach is also a good source of iron.
Fatty fish like herring, salmon and mackerel have nutrients that may promote hair growth like omega-3 fatty acids, which have been linked to hair growth.
Fatty fish is also a great source of protein, selenium, vitamin D3 and B vitamins, nutrients that may help promote strong and healthy hair (17).
Sweet potatoes are a great source of beta-carotene, which is converted by the body into vitamin A, which is linked to good hair health.
Research has shown that vitamin A promotes the production of sebum, which helps to keep hair healthy. It could also promote the growth of thicker hair and increase the rate of hair growth.
Avocados are the fruit of the moment. In addition to being delicious, and a great source of healthy fats, they are an excellent source of vitamin E, which may promote hair growth. Vitamin E also protects areas of the skin, like the scalp, from oxidative stress and damage.
Nuts are not just tasty but also contain vitamin E, a wide variety of B vitamins, zinc and essential fatty acids. Deficiency in any of these nutrients has been linked to hair loss.
Seeds like sunflower seeds, flax seeds and chia seeds may also promote hair growth as they are a good source of vitamin E, zinc, selenium and omega-3 fatty acids.
Sweet peppers are an excellent source of vitamin C, which promotes hair growth and vitamin A.
Beans are an excellent source of protein for vegetarians. They also are a good source of zinc and many other hair-healthy nutrients, including iron, biotin and folate.
Manju Mathew, an MBA in marketing, completed publisher training courses from the Oxford Brookes University and New York University. She started with marketing and PR roles before moving on to her current position as a full time writer. Currently living in Dubai, her life as an expat has sharpened her observation skills and flair for writing. She enjoys writing about luxury cars like Ferrari, Lamborghini, etc even if she can only dream of owning them.
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