11 Foods to Help Hair Growth & Why They Work (w/ Recipes)

Updated in March 2023

Foods to help with hair growth are those that are rich in protein and vitamins, like fish, eggs, soybeans, berries, bens and leafy greens. These tend to be rich in nutrients and have anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and antiseptic action that strengthen hair strands and hydrate the scalp. These characteristics help to prevent and treat hair loss. 

Some foods that treat hair loss can be applied directly to the scalp, like apple cider vinegar, while others should be consumed on a regular basis to achieve health goals. 

Hair loss may be related to many different factors, like hormonal changes, stress, or vitamin deficiency. Therefore, patients who are malnourished or have a low protein diet may have a higher change of hair loss. 

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List of foods that promote hair growth

Foods that stimulate hair growth include: 

1. Fish

Fish, like salmon, herring, sardines and tuna, are a great source of omega-3 and provide. anti-inflammatory action. These foods can prevent inflammation in the hair roots, which is a major factor of hair loss. Therefore, consuming fish on a regular basis can help to improve hair density.

In addition, these dish are rich in nutrients like protein, selenium and vitamin C, which are essential for hair health. They also improve blood circulation to the scalp, which promotes strong and healthy hair strands. 

Fish can be grilled, smoked, marinated or baked, and should be consumed at least 3 times per week. 

2. Eggs

Eggs are an important source of protein and biotin, which are two nutrients that are essential for the production of keratin. Keratin is a protein that protects and preserves the nutrients within a hair strand, keeping the hair healthy and avoiding hair loss. In addition to protein and biotin, eggs are rich in selenium and zinc, nutrients that help to promote healthy hair. 

Eggs should be consumed on a daily basis and can be boiled or scrambled, for example. 

3. Carrots

Carrots are another great source of nutrients that promote hair health. They are rich in vitamin A and vitamin E, which help to boost blood circulation to the scalp. They also contain antioxidants that help to prevent damage caused by free radicals, which can lead to weakened hair strands.

Vitamin C also acts as a natural conditioner that protects hair from falling out. 

4. Leafy-green vegetables

Leafy green vegetables, like spinach, kale and arugula, are rich in nutrients like vitamin A, vitamin C, iron, beta-carotenes, folic acid and biotin. These boost circulation to the scalp and stimulate the production of proteins that are essential for hair hair strands. They also hydrate the hair follicle at the root to prevent hair loss. 

In addition, an iron-deficient diet may also be related to hair loss. Therefore, it is advised to increase your consumption of these foods by adding them to salads, soups or smoothies to improve hair health. 

5. Berries and citrus fruits 

Berries and red fruits (like strawberries, cherries, raspberries, and guava) as well as citrus fruits (like oranges and lemons) are great source of antioxidants. These include vitamin C that help to protect hair follicles from damage caused by free radicals, which reduce circulation and weaken hair follicles. 

In addition, vitamin C helps the body to absorb iron and produce collagen, which is one of the main proteins used to produce hair.

6. Walnuts and seeds 

Walnuts, Brazilian nuts, flaxseeds and chia seeds are foods that are rich in nutrients which are important for treating hair loss. These include zinc, magnesium, B-complex vitamins, vitamin E, selenium and omega-3. These nutrients contain anti-inflammatory and antioxidant action which helps to maintain your scalp healthy, hydrate the skin and keep your hair strong. 

7. Rice and beans

Rice with beans is the perfect combination to promote hair health. This dish contains amino acids that promote the production of proteins that form collagen and keratin. These components strengthen hair strands and can help to strengthen hair strands when consumed on a regular basis. 

Beans are also rich in iron, zinc and biotin, which are essential for hair health and growth. 

A great substitute for beans that is also very nutritious is lentils. They also contain iron, vitamin C, manganese and folic acid, all which are important for red blood cell formation. Red blood cells deliver oxygen to the scalp and permit increased hair growth. 

8. Soybeans

Soybeans are a great natural source of plant-based protein and biotin. Including this food in your diet can provide more protein to the hair follicles, which prevents hair weakening that can lead to hair loss. 

Isoflavones that are present in soybeans help to stimulate the production of hyaluronic acid in the scalp, which hydrate the hair roots and decrease hair loss. 

9. Milk

Milk and dairy products, like yogurt, cheese or kefir, are rich in calcium and vitamin A which are nutrients that are important for strong hair strands. Vitamin A contains antioxidant action that reduces skin damage from free radicals, which permits optimal circulation to the scalp. Calcium is a mineral that is also important for healthy hair. Milk and dairy products help to prevent hollow, brittle hair strands that can contribute to hair loss. 

Dairy products are also a great source of biotin which is responsible for the production of keratin that strengthens hair and prevents hair loss. 

10. Apple cider vinegar

Apple cider vinegar is rich in vitamins and minerals that are good for hair, like vitamin C and B-complex vitamins. It also contains alpha-hydroxy acid, which helps to manage dandruff that can contribute to hair loss. 

Apple cider vinegar also has an acidic pH, which helps to regulate acidity at the scalp level. It also has an antiseptic action, which helps to treat bacteria or fungi which can be causing infections or itching that leads to hair loss.

To use apple cider vinegar for hair loss, you should apply it directly to the scalp. Learn more about the benefits of apple cider vinegar and the side effects associated with use.

11. Rosemary 

Rosemary is a medicinal plant that is rich in flavonoids, terpenes and phenolic acids that contain antioxidant and antiseptic properties. They can help to combat oily scalps and dandruff, which may contribute to hair loss. 

Rosemary can be prepared as a tea and applied directly to the scalp. Read more about the health benefits of rosemary tea and how to prepare it.

Recipes for hair loss 

Some recipes that contain all the nutrients that are important to prevent hair loss include:

1. Salmon with orange sauce 


  • 1 salmon fillet, with the skin 
  • 1 boiled egg, sliced thinly 
  • Half a cup of orange juice
  • Half a tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil 
  • 1 small sprig of rosemary  
  • 1 cup of washed spinach leaves 
  • 2 chopped walnuts 
  • Salt and pepper, to taste 

How to prepare

Preheat to oven to 200ºC (or 390ºF). Line an over-safe tray with aluminum foil or parchment paper. In a bowl, mix the spinach, rosemary, olive oil, salt and pepper. Spread this mixture over the tray. Season the salmon with salt and pepper and place it over the mixture. Pour the orange juice over the fillets and bake for 15 minutes. Sprinkle the walnuts over the salmon and also add the boiled egg, then serve. This recipe contains a serving for 1 person. 

2. Carrot juice with oranges and spinach 


  • 1 cup of natural orange juice
  • 1 cup of washed spinach 
  • 1 small carrot, grated or thinly sliced 

How to prepare

Mix all the ingredients in a blender and drink, at least once per day. 

3. Strawberry smoothie with flaxseeds


  • 1 cup of milk or Greek yogurt  
  • 5 strawberries, diced and wash
  • 1 tablespoon of golden flaxseeds

How to prepare

Mix all ingredients in a blender and drink, once per day. You can add honey to sweeten it.