Unlocking Radiant Skin and Lustrous Hair: The Power of Nutrition


The skin, including all of its hair follicles, glands, and microbiome, is the largest organ of the human body and is therefore most impacted by the foods, liquids, and substances in our body.

Our skin and hair also seem to get the most attention when it comes to our external appearance, and individuals go to great lengths to ensure that their hair and skin look young and healthy for as long as possible.

Though, who doesn't want healthy hair and skin?

Although we all strive for perfect skin and thick, shiny, flowing hair, there are so many factors that play into their health, and some may be tough to change. Our diet plays such a drastic role in the health of our skin and hair that it is easy to create long-lasting changes with some simple changes to the way you eat and approach your meals.

First, we'll cover what factors play into our skin and hair health before we jump into the specific foods and nutrients that best serve to support them.

What Impacts Our Skin & Hair The Most:

Genetics: Our genes play the biggest role in determining our overall skin and hair health. The texture, oil production, elasticity, and the way our skin ages are largely determined by the ancestral information carried in our genes. Hair growth and thus lack of hair growth, such as male pattern baldness, are also closely related to our genetics but can also be heavily impacted by our hormonal balance as well.

Diet: A diet high in simple carbs, trans fats, and processed foods is highly inflammatory and is closely linked to acne development, oily skin, dull hair, and slow hair growth. Anything that negatively affects the digestive system will have a negative impact on our skin and hair health.

Hygiene: This is something we all learn early on. Properly caring for our skin and hair—giving them some love and care—goes a long way in combating predisposing genetics and negative lifestyle choices that can be detrimental to our skin and hair health. Bathing without moisturizing, harsh soaps, irritating chemicals, or fabric softeners can all greatly agitate our skin.

Allergens: allergens are also extremely inflammatory to the whole body but can also directly agitate our skin and scalp. Things like dust mites, pet dander, pollen, molds, and reactive foods can all cause redness, itchiness, dryness, dullness, and blotchiness of the skin and scalp, leading to compromised hair health as well.

Cosmetic products: Although cosmetics are generally associated with women, men also use a number of personal care products that can be harsh on our skin and overall bodily function. Many commercially available personal care and cosmetic products have toxic chemicals and additives that damage our skin and hair, while synthetic ingredients leave hard-to-remove inflammatory residues on the skin and hair that bog them down and alter their normal function.

Nutritional deficiency: No matter how healthy we try to eat or take our supplements, the fact is that most individuals struggling with skin or hair issues will have a number of nutritional deficiencies or imbalances. Nutrients that play a large role in our skin and hair health include essential fatty acids, zinc, vitamin A, and vitamin C. Without these, our body will not be able to maintain our systems and will lead to dry, dull skin, while hair will also become weak and dry and may begin to fall out or gray prematurely.

Environmental factors: Extremes in temperature, perspiration, and even stress play a huge role in our skin and hair health. Very cold or hot environments will dry and agitate our skin. Sweating releases toxins and can increase oil production in our skin and clog pores if we don’t wash our skin soon after we are done sweating. Stress has a strong link to the development of acne and hair loss. Managing stress through meditation, counseling, or physical exercise can all greatly benefit the visual appearance of our skin and hair.

Gut dysfunction: Our gut health is tied to the foods we eat and the nutritional balance in our body. Yet many individuals may be struggling with chronic, inflammatory issues such as SIBO, candida, IBS, leaky gut, and chronic constipation. All these conditions either prevent proper nutrient absorption or detoxification and, of course, are inflammatory in nature, which will greatly affect the state of our skin and hair.

Direct agitation: The clothes and accessories we wear can agitate skin and bring about visible, unsightly reactions that we would rather avoid. Excess friction caused by clothing, hats, helmets, and phones will all contribute to excess oiliness, redness, and itchiness of the skin. At the same time, wearing hats or beanies too often will strain our hair follicles and compromise our hair structure, leading to brittle, dry, and weak hair.

Most important foods for skin & hair health:


When we think of grapefruits and citrus fruits in general, they are definitively associated with vitamin C, which has long been purported to have numerous health benefits. While it’s true that vitamin C plays a role in both immune function and collagen formation, that’s just one of the many things that make grapefruit so effective at promoting skin and hair health.

Grapefruits are also high in salicylic acid, which has been shown to be beneficial for cardiovascular health, detoxing the blood, and mitigating allergenic and inflammatory reactions. They are rich in calcium, magnesium, potassium, and lycopene, which all contribute greatly to our overall health.

Potent antioxidants have been shown to help prevent sun damage, increase collagen production, and, most importantly, improve overall skin tone.


Broccoli may not be everyone's favorite vegetable, yet it contains a substance called glucoraphanin that gets converted into sulforaphane, aiding skin repair and resulting in healthy skin. The concentration of sulforaphane in broccoli is among the highest of all vegetables.

Sulforaphane is the body’s most potent inducer of specific detoxification pathways that allow our body to fully process and excrete toxins throughout the body, including the hair and skin.

Broccoli sprouts, in particular, are one of the most concentrated sources of sulforaphane. In fact, 3-day-old sprouts contain 10–100 times higher levels of glucoraphanin than the mature plant (broccoli), with abundant quantities of vitamin C, vitamin A, calcium, and iron.

Toxins and metabolic waste are known to cause dull, dry, and flaky skin, along with weak and brittle hair. Adding broccoli to one's diet can go a long way in aiding our body to clear toxins that may be causing compromised skin and hair health.


Carrots are typically associated with eye health due to the fact that they are packed with vitamin A and vitamin E. Both of these vitamins improve microvasculated blood circulation to your skin and scalp, promoting hair growth and healthy cellular skin turnover.

The most important nutrient in carrots is beta-carotene, a potent antioxidant that is responsible for the yellow, orange, and green colors we see in vegetables. Carrots are very rich in beta-carotene, which acts as a precursor to vitamin A, helping to protect the skin against sun damage and age-related wear and tear.

They are also rich in calcium, magnesium, potassium, and phosphorus, all of which are essential minerals for optimal cellular function. The more colors you can incorporate into your diet, the better, and they typically come with the benefit of a healthy dose of fiber, which boosts our digestive health and helps us better absorb our nutrients.

Sweet Potato 

Sweet potatoes are some of the most complementary and nourishing foods to eat when struggling with hair or skin health. They are known to quell digestive inflammation, support hormonal balance, and bind heavy metals throughout the body. They also offer a generous amount of calcium, magnesium, potassium, folic acid, vitamin C, vitamin E, phosphorus, and beta-carotene.

A medium-sized sweet potato a day should provide you with enough nutrients to support your skin and hair health, as well as a healthy gut microbiome. What's more, its rich content of beta-carotene is converted to vitamin A in the body, which has been shown to increase the rate of hair growth while also improving its thickness.

Hormonal balance is essential for the texture, hydration, and complexion of your skin, which is another reason why sweet potatoes are so great for our skin health. Eating them will help prevent acne and dull skin.


Salmon, and fatty fish in general, are high in anti-inflammatory omega-3 fats that have been thoroughly studied for their beneficial effects on brain and cardiovascular health. Salmon is high in protein, vitamin B12, selenium, magnesium, vitamin D, and calcium, and is typically considered to have the lowest mercury content of all fatty fish.

Studies have consistently shown that taking supplements containing omega-3 fats can help reduce hair loss while also promoting hair density on the scalp, preventing signs of hair thinning or balding that may set in with age. Quenching inflammation in the body will also allow our body to have more energy to contribute towards promoting the health of the largest organ in the body.


Avocados are high in healthy monounsaturated fats, fiber, and potassium. They are also a great source of vitamin K, folate (B9), magnesium, lutein, zeaxanthin, copper, iron, and vitamin E. Avocados are typically considered a balanced pH food that is easily digested and provides instant nourishment for the blood and thus the body.

When the blood is properly saturated with essential nutrients and minerals, it can more effectively deliver those nutrients to the furthest reaches of our body. Our skin and hair greatly rely on our nutrient status, and a gentle, nourishing food like avocados can greatly improve their health levels. Avocado's healthy fats also keep our skin hydrated and allow our natural, healthy oils to strengthen and support the hair on our scalp.

Pumpkin Seeds

Pumpkin seeds are generally regarded as being great for hormonal balance and immune function. This is all thanks to the fact that pumpkin seeds are high in protein, zinc, lignans, and phytosterols, which impact our liver health and thus our hormone production. Calcium, iron, magnesium, B vitamins, vitamin E, phosphorus, potassium, and omega-3 essential fatty acids are all found in rich quantities in the seeds as well.

In herbal medicine and ancient Ayurvedic practices, they were considered to act as an anti-parasitic, anti-cancer, diuretic, prostate-protecting, and testosterone-boosting medicine.

Many of the nutrients found in pumpkin seeds may promote hair growth and nourish the skin with healthy fats and balanced hormone levels.


Spinach is a healthy green vegetable that’s loaded with beneficial nutrients like folate (B9), vitamin B6, magnesium, iron, and vitamins A and C, all of which may promote hair growth.

It is generally regarded as having anti-cancer properties, the ability to regulate blood pressure, increase immune function, and support bone health. It is no wonder that spinach is good for our hair and skin when it supports so many vitally important organ systems throughout the body.

Spinach has been shown to help regulate oil production from the sebaceous glands that are dispersed throughout the skin and scalp. Its high quantity of vital minerals and B vitamins also supports healthy blood cell function, which can promote hair growth and healthy skin cell function by better supplying nutrients and oxygen to those areas of the body.


Eggs are a great source of protein and biotin, two nutrients that have long been linked to healthy hair cells and a healthy scalp. Cholesterol is also an essential nutrient that bolsters the membranes of cells throughout the entire body.

Eating adequate protein is important for hair growth because hair follicles are mostly made of protein, and without it, many people will experience hair loss. Biotin, also known as vitamin B7, is essential for the production of a hair protein called keratin; without it, we would not be able to create new hair cells and thus would experience thinning of hair throughout the scalp and body.

Eggs are also a great source of zinc, selenium, and other hair-healthy nutrients that are easily digested and help support the overall structure, moisture, and texture of our hair.


Berries are loaded with beneficial compounds and vitamins that may promote hair growth, including vitamin C, which supports collagen formation and skin health. The rich colors of berries lend themselves to the fact that they are rich in antioxidants called polyphenols that protect hair follicles and skin cells from harmful toxins in the body known as free radicals. Free radicals are known to cause weak and brittle hair as well as dull, blotchy skin.

Berries' vitamin C content has also been shown to help the body absorb iron from the diet. Low iron levels may cause anemia, which has been linked to hair loss and dry skin, as the cells of the body cannot be properly nourished or oxygenated.

As mentioned above, if you are struggling with your hair or skin health, you may be deficient in certain nutrients. Finding a high-potency multivitamin or a product specifically tailored to your needs could go a long way toward restoring your hair and skin back to their natural, healthy states.

We recommend that your product have these ingredients:

Vitamin A: 150,000 IU/day

Vitamin E: 400 IU/day

Vitamin C: 1000 mg/day

Zinc: 30-45 mg/day

Selenium: 200 mcg/day

Chromium: 200–400 mcg/day

Biotin: 3,000 mcg/day

Iron: 10 mg/dau

Vitamin D: 2,500 IU/day

Fish Oil: 1-3g QD

Flaxseed Oil: 1 tbsp daily

Probiotics: 5–10 billion CFU/live bacteria

Always consult with your health professional before making drastic changes to your supplement or nutritional regimen.

The Bottom Line:

Everything that we eat, drink, or think has a dramatic effect on the health of our skin and hair. If you are experiencing problems or concerning patterns with the state of your hair and skin, it may be a sign that you are lacking the essential foods that we have covered in this article.

A lack of the right nutrients, including vitamins A, C, D, and E, zinc, B vitamins, iron, biotin, protein, and essential fatty acids, may slow down hair growth or even cause hair loss while leading to a dull, dry, and blotchy appearance of our skin.

Fortunately, many of the deficiencies that may contribute to our concerning symptoms can easily be remedied by a bit of conscious nutrition and proper self-care.

If you think you’re lacking any of these nutrients, try adding some of the above foods to your diet.

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