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Want Fewer Bad Hair Days? Eat Better!

You know the line, "You are what you eat"?

Well, your hair reacts strongly to what you consume.

On The Early Show Wednesday, dietician Keri Glassman offered the recipe for healthy, good-looking hair -- and fewer bad hair days -- by tending toward certain foods and avoiding others.

Glassman says people may not realize that their diet affects their hair, but it does! Hair can look old just like skin can look old.

Everyone wants their hair to look shiny and fresh -- and diet could help in that regard, Glassman points out.

FOR STRONG/FAST GROWING HAIR
Protein: a building block of hair (meat, fish, eggs)
B12: prevents hair loss (meat, eggs, fish, yogurt)
Iron: prevents hair loss
Calcium: essential for hair growth (yogurt, milk)
Biotin: Helps produce keratin; may prevent graying and hair loss (wheat germ, brewers yeast, organ meats, oatmeal, egg yolk, soy, mushrooms, bananas, peanuts)
Silica: strengthens hair, prevents hair loss (sunflower seeds, peanuts, almonds, strawberries)

Choose: lean beef, eggs, chicken, yogurt, asparagus, Swiss chard, almonds, brown rice, cumin, tumeric

FOR SHINY HAIR
Omega 3 fatty acids: encourage re-growth and prevent hair loss (salmon, walnuts, flaxseed)
Vitmin A: helps produce healthy sebum in scalp (carrots, Swiss chard, cantaloupe)
Vitamin C: maintains scalp health
Selenium: keeps skin and scalp supple and elastic (tuna, turkey)

Choose: wild salmon, tuna, sardines, walnuts, brazil nuts, beets, broccoli, carrots, berries, melons, flaxseed,

FOR DRY HAIR
Iodine: prevents dry hair, hair loss (bowl of salt)
Vitamin A: helps produce healthy sebum in scalp
Vitamin E: enhances scalp circulation (almonds, green leafy veggies, avocado)
Zinc: prevents dry hair (oysters, poultry, meat, beans, nuts, and dairy, coconut)

Choose: water, seaweed, green vegetables, olive oil, avocado, mushrooms, sunflower seeds, kelp, iodized salt, garlic

FOR ENHANCED COLOR HAIR (NON-GRAYING HAIR)
Vitamin B5: prevents graying, hair loss (eggs, brewers yeast, liver, milk, sunflower seeds, peas, peanuts, beans, broccoli, bananas, mushrooms, wheat germ)
Vitamin B6: helps create melanin, which gives hair its color (wheat germ, baked potato, garbanzo beans, chicken, spinach, red meat)

Choose: coconut, brewer's yeast, milk, eggs, shellfish, liver

GENERAL TIPS

Stay hydrated; water is best.

Choose whole, natural, fresh foods

Focus on getting five-plus servings of fruits and vegetables per day

A balance of protein, complex carbohydrates, healthy fats, vitamins, and minerals is key

Avoid processed, packaged foods

Take a multivitamin and omega-3 supplement

Get adequate sleep

Keep stress levels low

Damaging to hair:

Caffeinated beverages: coffee, soda, etc.

Low-protein diet

Vitamin/mineral deficiencies

Refined sugars

Processed foods with preservative, high salt content

Transfats, saturated fats

Excess amount of vitamins, minerals - be careful with supplements

Lack of sleep

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