They say the road to thicker, stronger, and healthier hair starts from within. It makes sense, right? Whatever we eat to nourish our bodies also nourish our hair. Why not feed hair with healthy and nourishing foods that will make it truly shine as our crowning glory?
There’s no better way to achieve gorgeously healthy locks than to feed it with plant-based whole foods. A vegan diet plan is an excellent way to nurse your tresses back to good health.
So today, we’ve listed amazing vegan foods that work wonders in keeping hair healthy and strong. We’ve also compiled a 7-day vegan diet plan to get you started on the road to lovely locks. Without further ado, let’s dig in!
Veganism Vs. Vegetarianism
First, let’s define what a vegan diet is. Many people get confused between vegan and vegetarian diets, thinking they are the same.
A vegan diet is one that is solely based on plants and plant products alone. Strict vegan followers do not eat anything that comes from animals, including meat, seafood, eggs, and dairy.
Meanwhile, vegetarianism is closely related to veganism as it also consists mainly of plant-based foods. But the difference lies in their consumption of products that came from animals. Vegetarians may eat foods that came from animals (not necessarily the animal itself) such as eggs or dairy.
Now that veganism is clearly differentiated from vegetarianism, let’s head over to vegan-friendly foods that help enhance overall hair health.
Top Vegan Foods for Healthy Hair
Iron and protein are the most important nutrients that you need for strong and healthy tresses.
Iron improves scalp circulation by increasing the oxygen delivered through the blood. Better scalp circulation leads to increased hair growth at the follicular level.
Protein is the most crucial building block of hair. Our tresses are made of a special protein called keratin. Increased dietary protein intake helps our bodies create new keratin to strengthen our existing locks and encourage the growth of new, healthy ones.
Most people think that both iron and protein are only abundant in meat and animal-based food products. But the good news is that both of them can also be found in a variety of vegan-friendly food as well!
Here’s a list of vegan foods containing these essential hair-boosting nutrients.
Iron-rich plant-based vegan foods:
Green leafy vegetables:
- Swiss chard
- Lima beans
- White beans
- Black beans
- Navy beans
- Kidney beans
- Pinto beans
- Brown rice
Seeds and nuts:
- Unhulled sesame seeds
- Sunflower seeds
- Pumpkin seeds
- Squash seeds
- Prune juice
- Dried Apricots
- White button mushrooms
- Acorn squash
- Spring onions
Protein-rich plant-based vegan foods:
- Sweet potatoes
- Brussels sprouts
- Sweet corn
- Dry oats
- Soy milk
- Most bean varieties (chickpeas, pinto beans, kidney beans, black beans)
- Chia seeds
- Ezekiel bread
Apart from iron and protein, you also need foods that are rich in the following nutrients:
- Vitamin C foods help improve iron absorption. Vegan options include oranges, kiwi, bell peppers, and pineapple.
- Zinc binds the proteins in the hair follicles, leading to stronger roots and less hair fall. Include peanuts, pine nuts, sunflower seeds, and whole grains in your diet.
- Biotin is a nutrient that helps in amino acid formation, which leads to protein synthesis. Cauliflower, walnuts, almonds, and carrots are some sources of biotin.
- Omega-3 fatty acids are important for scalp nourishment and moisturization. Plant-based sources of this nutrient include canola oil, flax seeds, soybeans, and walnuts.
- B-vitamins are needed to create new red blood cells. They assist in circulating oxygen throughout the body, including the hair follicles. Vegan options for this nutrient include oatmeal and beans.
One Week Vegan Meal Plan for Healthier Hair
Let’s now incorporate all these foods into a 7-day vegan meal plan for healthier and stronger hair. We’ll give you breakfast, lunch, and dinner ideas infused with most of the vegan and hair-friendly foods we’ve listed earlier.
Enhancing Your Vegan and Hair-Friendly Meals
Here are some more tips to make your vegan meals even yummier:
- Make sure to use vegan-friendly versions of ingredients such as curry powders. Also, use healthier oils such as canola and olive oil for cooking up the recipes we’ve compiled.
- End your meals with surprisingly delicious vegan treats, such as Black Bean Brownies, Vegan Peanut Butter Cups, and Vanilla Faux Ice Cream. These desserts are so good and healthy, you won’t believe they’re made sans dairy and eggs!
- No time to spare for whipping up vegan desserts? Serve up quick fruits that double as hair loss busters such as apples, bananas, guavas, and strawberries.
- Drink lots of water after chowing down your meals. More water means more nourishment and moisture for your skin, scalp, and hair!
You can definitely fight hair loss and improve your mane’s texture, shine, and strength with vegan-friendly meals! Not only do these dishes taste incredibly delicious, but they’re also loaded with hair-loving nutrients and are really simple to create.
Feel free to mix and match dishes depending on your ingredients' availability and your taste buds’ moods. Make these dishes an inspiration and a jump-off point to creating your own unique, healthy, and yummy vegan meals for hair health.
How did your vegan meals go? Share more hair-friendly vegan recipes in the comments section below. We’d love to hear from you!