Vitamins for hair and nails: benefits and pitfalls
Fashion trends come and go, but there is one trend that will always be in style: strong hair and nails. Let's talk today about vitamins for hair and nails, and what you need to know before taking that.
Every day on various social networks, we stumble upon another beauty blogger or celebrity advertising “amazing” vitamins that make their hair or nails significantly stronger, thicker, stronger, more shiny, etc. And after viewing a billion of these posts day after day, you will most likely be tempted to join the cheering crowd and get yourself a few jars of vitamins too. It was my fault too :)
But before you raid drugstore shelves or the internet, let's see if taking a few pills can actually give you the hair and nails of your dreams. Read my article today to find out what you need to be aware of before stocking up on these miraculous, magical vitamins.
What vitamins to take?
If you're going to ingest some of the vitamins your neighbor's cousin's hairdresser suggested, you need to make sure you know what you're taking and why. Vitamin A, Omega 3 and all B-complex vitamins play an important role in the appearance of our skin and nails. Biotin and folic acid are one of the most popular and widely advertised B-complex vitamins that people take when trying to grow their hair. These vitamins help your body process energy and carbon dioxide in your blood, which in turn speeds up your metabolism and cell renewal. But, it is worth emphasizing that taking these vitamins cannot guarantee you strong, strong and beautiful hair and nails, but it will definitely improve their original condition.
Biotin is also known as vitamin B7 and is highly regarded as a hair savior. Doctors often prescribe biotin for people with alopecia, an autoimmune disorder that causes hair loss.
Biotin can be found in a number of foods that you regularly consume. Bananas have the highest concentration of biotin, but most beans (including peanuts and lentils) are also high in biotin.
Another popular vitamin to take is Omega-3 . Everything that is based on keratin in our body (and keratin is the main protein found in hair, skin, and nails) will definitely improve after taking Omega-3 fatty acids.
600 milligrams per day is the recommended daily allowance, which can be easily obtained from eating fish, flaxseeds, some nuts, and even some dairy products.
And finally, we have vitamin A, which is also found in many foods and can help reduce brittle nails and hair loss. Therefore, I find it easier to get the safe, recommended dose of vitamins A and B through your daily diet, rather than taking supplements on your own, which can negatively impact your health in the long run.
Separately, I want to note the role of calcium for the beauty of hair and nails . Calcium is one of the most demanded minerals in the body, so when your system lacks it, it will almost immediately affect the quality of your hair and nails.
However, simply consuming extra calcium may not be enough; your body needs the help of other vitamins in order to properly absorb calcium. Oversaturation of the body with calcium is fraught with serious negative consequences, such as the appearance of urolithiasis and narrowing of the walls of blood vessels. So girls, this is not a joke! :)
Ignore the rumors
Raise your hand if you ever heard from a pregnant girl that taking folic acid vitamins affected the density and shine of her hair. :) I heard it from almost all my girlfriends! But enhanced hair growth and folic acid intake are not necessarily linked. Hair growth during pregnancy is most likely caused by a flurry of changing hormones, rather than taking extra folic acid, which is already in your body.
Folic acid is not a mysterious “pregnancy pill”, but in fact the same vitamin B, only in a slightly different form, which promotes cell regeneration, and is found in a ton of food.
Most baked goods, grains, and some dairy products are fortified with folic acid. It can also be found in spinach, broccoli, avocados and beans.
So, assuming you're not pregnant, chances are you're already eating enough folic acid.
How vitamins work
Just like when you're dieting, your body doesn't know how to target, say, only your thighs (oh, what a pity...), while taking vitamins, your body also doesn't know that the supplements you're taking, must certainly improve nails or hair. It can help your body's overall functioning, which in turn can help promote healthy skin and nails, but the same can be said for a proper diet.
Be patient and don't expect miracles
Unfortunately, vitamins will not work immediately. In fact, unless you are deficient in vitamins in your body, it may not work for you at all. :( But even if you take into account the possibility of a huge deficiency of vitamins and minerals in the body, in which taking vitamins is mandatory - it will still take several weeks, or a couple of months, before you see results. And no matter how sad it is to admit, but nothing that you taking it by mouth today won't help already damaged hair. Any supplements and vitamins you're going to take will only help the next layer of nails or hair. So chances are you won't see too much of a difference for another four or five months. :(
More doesn't mean better
The biggest problem associated with taking vitamins is the risk of hypervitaminosis - intoxication of the body with vitamins, taking double or triple the recommended dosage. I know a couple of girls who believe that they will achieve the effect faster if they take, for example, not one, but two tablets a day. And the effect will be true! Only deplorable :) Although most vitamins are safe to take at the recommended dose, most people don't take into account the vitamins they already get from their food. And in the end, due to an overabundance of vitamins, the condition of the skin, nails and hair will become even worse than before taking that...
A well balanced diet that contains a variety of foods is the best way to keep your hair, nails and skin healthy; however, vitamin supplements can help and give you an extra boost. The most correct decision would be to go to the doctor and discuss the need for taking vitamins with him. After all, your neighbor's cousin's hairdresser may be a good person, but his advice will not benefit you! :)