So there are a lot of trends in the beauty and wellness world that are constantly clogging our news feeds: acrylic nails, self-care, digital detoxing…the list is endless. Now vitamin supplements probably can’t help you with most of that, but they can help you with your hair, skin, and nails. While many supplements that are sold at pharmacies have to be taken with a pinch of salt because they’re often not backed by science, there are a few out there that might actually be useful to keep you healthy. However, you should probably still consult your doctor before taking them, just in case.
We often have problems with our hair and skin specifically with nails perhaps, but that too can have its own issues (brittle nails for example). Itchy or dry scalp, dandruff, dry skin and acne, the possibilities are endless when it comes to your hair and skin. And as women, we all know that a bad hair day ruins everything! So what are these vitamin supplements that could be beneficial for you?
Biotin is a B vitamin, and is actually naturally present in some foods, like bananas and the much-loved peanut butter you put on your lunch sandwiches. It’s supposed to help prevent hair loss and also can encourage nail growth. It can also make your nails feel less brittle and they might grow stronger. Biotin is easily available as a supplement as well. It’s also supposed to be useful in helping to improve your blood sugar levels and preventing type 2 diabetes. You might be getting most of the required biotin from your diet, but biotin deficiencies aren’t uncommon. You could definitely look into biotin supplements. So if your nails are constantly chipping off and you need to encourage nail growth, this is definitely an option to look into!
Omega-3s are usually found in fatty fish, like salmon and sardines, and they can help make your skin feel fresh and rejuvenated. Omega-3 fatty acids can be taken as a supplement (especially if you’re not a fish-eater, then it might reduce future cardiovascular issues or heart problems) but not in excess, because they might cause side effects. However, they are supposed to work as anti-aging supplements, and they can make your hair look shinier and stop your dry scalp from being flaky. So if you’re really struggling with wrinkles and fine lines, this might be worth it. They can also be helpful if you have psoriasis, which is a skin condition where you have scaly, pink skin on elbows, knees, and other places.
Protein is necessary for hair growth, especially since our hair is almost entirely made of protein. While people who eat meat regularly probably don’t need to be concerned, you might need to consider protein supplements if you’re a vegetarian or a vegan.
There are a few foods which naturally contain zinc, like beef, spinach, pumpkin, and lentils. It can help with hair growth and repair, and also makes sure that there’s enough oil production in your hair follicles. If you’re not getting enough zinc in your diet, it probably will translate into hair loss. So you could try zinc supplements to remedy that.
If you’re deficient in Vitamin C, you might have split ends in your hair. It can help to promote hair growth and tackle dandruff issues, as well as make your hair thicker by preventing hair loss. Vitamin C supplements should be considered if you’re having these issues and you’re a woman over the age of 19. However, it also increases iron absorption in the body, so don’t take supplements if you have an iron-overload problem.
Anemia (caused by an iron deficiency) is particularly common in women, and it leads to hair loss. Iron helps to keep your hair from getting dry and dull, and keeps your nails from getting too brittle. It can also help your skin quality by activating B vitamins. Iron is found in some foods (spinach, cashews), but iron deficiencies can cause damage to your skin, hair, and nails. Your doctor might then encourage iron supplements to keep everything healthy.
Whether or not a lot of supplements work is still a matter for speculation. It isn’t a subject of intense research in the medical field, but some doctors do say that the placebo effect (expecting results) actually gets results. If you’re keen to take a supplement, it’s better to get the okay from your doctor first!