You must’ve heard about the importance of amino acids for hair health. Indeed, the protein levels in our body may really have an effect on hair quality. But why?
Amino Acids and Hair
Some people are willing to attack their hair with every product they can get their hands on. These products include conditioners, shampoo, hair masks, and oils. Not to mention all the other hair treatments offered in salons.
Unfortunately, people sometimes forget a good and healthy diet has an impact on hair quality. The nutrients we get from food play a critical role in how hair grows and maintains its strength and luster. One group of critical nutrients that individuals need to incorporate into their hair health routine is amino acids. But what are amino acids?
Amino acids are usually called the building blocks of protein and they contain certain compounds that organic which is composed of a side chain, a carboxylic acid, and amines. They are believed to make up around one-fifth of the body. This makes an amino acid a very important component in terms of aiding the body in the accomplishment of several critical biological processes. Hair growth is a biological process which requires the assistance of these amino acids to be successful.
Keratin and Hair
To better understand how hair growth works, it is first important to know what makes up the human hair. The human hair is composed of around eighty-eight percent keratin, which is a form of protein. This kind of protein is a special form as it needs 18 different amino acids to be produced.
Some of the amino acids required to develop keratin are produced by the human body. However, the other protein components of keratin can only be acquired by individuals through food and supplements. As such, enhanced levels of amino acids in the human body can result in optimal hair health and hair growth. In addition, these amino acids can help in red blood cell production. This then can promote better hair growth due to better flow of nutrients and oxygen to the follicles.
Amino Acids for Hair Health
Boosting intake of some types of amino acid may improve hair health. Enumerated below are some amino acids for healthy and lustrous hair:
The most important amino acid for the growth and health of the human hair, Cysteine is known to enhance hair health and stimulate the growth of the hair. Cysteine is also considered as a powerful antioxidant and has also been shown to protect the hair from harmful elements such as radiations and excessive UV rays from the sun. In addition, Cysteine has also bee shown to help in the treatment of alopecia aside from the provision of sulfur to the human hair which can help in improving hair strength and texture. Cysteine can be in some common food items such as milk, yogurt, Brussel sprouts, wheat germ, chicken, and broccoli
Methionine is another critical amino acid in terms of hair health and growth. This amino acid is a power anti-oxidant and has been shown to contain significant levels of sulfur which is a required component in the fight against hair disorders. This critical amino acid is an excellent lipotropic and can help the body in fat breakdown to avoid the accumulation and clogging of fats in other body parts and arteries. This contributes to improved blood flow can also help hair growth and hair health. In addition, methionine can also integrate collagen which can result in hair shafts that are considered stronger. It can be acquired by individuals through food items such as sesame seeds, cereal grains, Brazil nuts, eggs, and fish.
One of the key features of Lysine is that it can produce collagen by taking in calcium, This collagen produced by lysine is extremely important as they form the core structure of the follicles of the hair which can also translate to increased hair growth and stronger hair shafts. Lysine can also help individuals in preventing the conversion of 5-alpha-reductase of testosterone to DHT which has been known to result in male pattern baldness also known as androgenic alopecia. Food items that contain lysine are dairy products, pork, red meat, pulses, nuts, legumes, fish, eggs, and chicken.
Similar to lysine, glycine is an amino acid that can significantly increase the production of collagen for the growth of hair. In addition to its hair benefits, Glycine has also been shown to aid the body in improving the functions of the central nervous system and the digestive system. This translates to better protection in connection with possible disorders that may lead to depreciating hair health and eventual hair loss. While glycine is produced naturally by the human body, certain food items can also help in the supplementation of glycine. These food items include banana, soybeans, cabbage, beans, spinach, fish, different dairy products, and meat. These food items can generally provide glycine and may lead to better hair health.