Vegan How-To: Healthier Hair, Skin, and Nails
While there exists a strong cultural tendency to address healthier hair, skin, and nails via product, there also exists a very real possibility of addressing these desires via produce. The following is an examination of some of the vitamins and minerals that are responsible for maintaining healthy hair, skin, and nails, and how one may obtain these nutrients with neither animals nor products.
- Vitamin A helps renew skin cells and produce sebum (a natural moisturizer for scalp). Alongside this is Beta Carotene, an antioxidant that helps locate and destroy free radicals. Interestingly, Beta Carotene is converted to Vitamin A by the liver. Some common sources of Vitamin A and Beta Carotene are:
- Sweet potatoes
2. Omega-3 Fatty Acids are anti-inflammatory and they actively moisturize skin. A few common sources are:
- Garbanzo beans
3. Zinc is a mineral that helps build, repair, and protect cells, as well as maintaining moisture in the skin. Two widespread sources are:
- Nuts (pistachios, almonds, cashews, and peanuts)
- Beans (black and white).
4. Vitamin E is an antioxidant that prevents acne, scars, and wrinkles, while promoting healthy circulation and greater oxygen delivery to cells. The best source for Vitamin E is a variety of nuts, for example:
5. Vitamin C assists in the production of collagen – and helps prevents sagging and wrinkle formation. The best sources of vitamin C are:
- Fruits (oranges, kiwis, strawberries, blueberries, and guavas)
- B Vitamins (B2, B5, B12) are very important for maintaining healthy skin and promoting skin cell growth. One of these, biotin, promotes healthy hair growth, as well as an increase in the firmness and hardness of nails.
Some great sources are:
- Legumes (chickpeas)
6. Selenium is important for maintaining skin elasticity. Selenium has a wide-variety of sources:
- Whole grains
- Mushrooms (shiitake).
There’s one final, all-important factor in maintaining healthy hair, skin, and nails: Are you drinking enough water? Hydration is generally hailed as the most important in health, from dietary management, to metabolism (and therefore weightless), and managing to simply “feel good.” While seemingly over-conventional, beauty starts and ends on the inside.