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5 Foods That Can Actually Help Prevent Gray Hair

5 Foods That Can Actually Help Prevent Gray Hair

Don’t say goodbye to your natural color just yet.

Aging is (unfortunately) inevitable, but gray hair doesn’t have to be! Turns out, there are certain foods with properties that can actually prevent graying of hair—so you can keep your locks streak-free for as long as possible (even without that box of hair dye!)

Best part? These foods are delicious and easy to implement, and offer a host of vitamins and minerals to keep your body humming along, so you have permission to eat as much as you like.

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Here, the top five foods that can protect your hair from turning gray.


That’s right—this tasty citrus fruit has more benefits than just offering some sweetness and tang. “Tangerines are a great source of vitamin C, which is crucial in development of collagen protein, a connective tissue that makes up much of the body, including hair,” says Kelly Jones MS, RD, CSSD, LDN. Try a tangerine the next time you want a sweet snack, or use a few in one of these citrus recipes.

Fermented Foods

Probiotics aren’t just great for your digestive system—they’re also great your head! “Fermented foods like kimchi or sauerkraut provide probiotics to support gut health,” says Jones. And a healthy gut is important for hair health, as gut bacteria actually produce the B-vitamin, biotin, she explains.

Biotin deficiencies result in changes in hair color and strength, says Jones, such as making them brittle and more prone to thin out, so getting enough in your diet can keep your color lasting longer.


Salmon provides a nice dose of vitamin D, which may be related to hair pigmentation, says Jones. “If someone has a true D deficiency present with premature grays, a D-3 supplement may help, but obtaining it through the diet with fatty fish like salmon can mean you’re getting many other nutrients to support hair and skin, such as omega 3 and protein,” she says. We’ll call that a win-win.


While egg whites have lots of protein, you’ll want to eat the whole egg—including the yolk—if you want to reap hair health rewards. “Whole eggs provide Vitamin B-12 (a nutrient that isn’t obtained from plant foods),” says Jones. “A 2016 study showed those with premature graying were more likely to have low Vitamin b-12 status,” she says. Eat hard-boiled eggs as a snack or make eggs for a hearty breakfast that’s packed with nutrients. And if you’re a vegan, you should consider taking a vitamin B12 supplement.

Dark Chocolate

Dark chocolate is a good source of both iron and copper, two nutrients that are excellent for preventing gray hair and aging. “Low ferritin (the storage market of iron in our blood) has been linked to premature graying in one study, and while copper deficiency is rare, the nutrient is in part responsible for melanin production,” says Jones.

With aging comes lower melanin levels, so keeping those copper levels high can help combat the process. Enjoy a square or two for a sweet indulgence—your hair will thank you!

8 Natural Recipes for Restoring the Color of Graying Hair .

How to restore gray hair without having to use harsh commercial dyes is a century old question! Well, maybe not century, but we’re still talking about an issue most women are bound to face sooner or later! Luckily, there are plenty of natural concoctions for restoring graying hair and my today’s post will, hopefully, help you find a perfect one for your hair! Simply take a look at these following recipes describing how to create natural hair dyes for gray hair and enjoy experimenting:

Why should you use oil to forestall gray hair?

The people with gray hair, particularly the young and the young adults, get so crazy that they can’t help buying for different chemical based products to get rid of the problem fast.

But, it is not the problem that should be taken care of so fast. It is a very sensitive issue and needs careful handling. The natural remedies are the best to be opting for the purpose. Messaging of oil extracted from the different natural sources regularly on the scalp is very helpful for turning gray hair into the natural color.

Unlike other chemical products, the oil goes deeper into the scalp and strengthens the fiber content and binds hair protein. In course of time, the process of graying gets prevented, and also the possibility of growing gray hair is checked.

The deficiency of these vitamins may cause premature graying of hair. You should eat foods that are rich in vitamin B such as whole grain bread, cereals, bananas, eggs, dairy products, poultry, meat, and green leafy vegetables.

Copper deficiency can also significantly contribute to premature graying. One of the ways to stop gray hair naturally is to eat foods containing high amounts of copper such as turnip greens, spinach, beef liver, sunflower seeds, cashews, lentils, almonds, clams, crabs, oysters, egg yolk, and mushrooms.


Caroline Attwood/Unsplash

The human body can do a lot of crazy stuff, like turning sunlight into bone-strengthening vitamin D. Something it can't do, however, is make omega-3 fatty acids. In addition to helping you stay fit and disease free, omega-3's enable you to grow hair and keep it shiny and full.

"Omega-3's are anti-inflammatory. They can help if you have inflammation that's causing hair shedding," says Dr. Jacob. It's best to get omega-3s from natural sources, such as salmon and cold-water fish like sardines and mackerel.

RELATED: Your guide to the anti-inflammatory diet that heals your gut, slows the signs of aging, and helps you lose weight.

What causes gray hair?

“ There are pigment cells called melanocytes in your hair follicles which give your hair its color, called melanin,” says Debra Jaliman, MD, author of “Skin Rules: Trade Secrets from a Top New York Dermatologist.” “When you stop producing this melanin, hair begins to turn gray.”

People typically start going gray after the age of 30 — from there, the likelihood of turning gray increases 10 to 20 percent every decade. [1]

Sure, age and genes do play a hand in deciding when you start to go gray. But what is it exactly that causes your body to stop producing melanin? The question has stumped scientists for decades, but a handful of recent studies provide some answers.

Gray hair and catalase

In a 2009 study, researchers discovered that going gray is simply a buildup of hydrogen peroxide in your hair particles, which bleaches your hair from the inside. [2] Yep, bottle blondes love hydrogen peroxide for its bleaching effect, but it’s also a chemical that your hair cells make naturally.

Here’s where things get interesting — usually, a hardworking enzyme called catalase breaks down hydrogen peroxide into water and oxygen. But as you get older, catalase production starts to slow down. The result? Hydrogen peroxide starts to accumulate in the body.

“Hydrogen peroxide plays a major role in essentially bleaching out the hair pigment centers,” says Ronald Peralta, cancer survivor and co-founder of hair supplement Nutrafol, in a recent Bulletproof Radio ( iTunes ) podcast episode. “ Gray hair is nothing less than a reflection of a reduction of catalase enzyme, one of the more potent antioxidants.”

Catalase isn’t the only enzyme that breaks down hydrogen peroxide. Glutathione peroxidase, the body’s master antioxidant produced by the liver, turns hydrogen peroxide into water. [3] Because glutathione production lowers as you get older, it’s a good idea to supplement. To get more glutathione:

  • Take glutathione supplements (500-1000mg on an empty stomach at bedtime)
  • Add grass-fed whey protein to your diet. Research shows that taking 10 grams of whey twice a day increases glutathione levels in the body by 46 percent. [4]
  • Eat foods rich in vitamin C, which raises glutathione in red blood cells. [5]
  • Exercise regularly. Working out boosts your body’s antioxidant levels, including glutathione. [6]

Mnt signaling and gray hair

A 2016 study offered another intriguing possibility — that targeting the molecular pathways that govern hair pigment could restore hair color. [7] By studying stem cells in mice, scientists at New York University’s Langone Medical Center found that a signaling pathway called Edn/EdnrB interacts with other pathways, particularly the Mnt signaling pathway. This process creates more melanocytes — cells that form melanin in the skin and hair.

The study was the first to find a link between these signaling pathways and hair and skin pigment. The findings suggest that developing a drug or other therapy to target these pathways may help bring back some color to gray tresses.

Iron-Rich Foods

Spinach, kidney beans, potatoes, lentils, raisins and prunes and prune juice are all good sources of iron. The recommended dietary allowance of iron is 8 milligrams daily for adult men and 18 milligrams for women between the ages of 19 and 50 -- rising to 27 milligrams for pregnant women. According to a study published in 2012 in "Biological Trace Element Research," low iron levels are associated with early graying. Researchers conducting the study were investigating the effects of low copper, zinc and iron levels on early graying.

15 Foods That Fight Hair Loss and Support Thick, Healthy Hair, According to a Dietitian

When it comes to thick, healthy hair, we are bombarded with tons of hair care products promising to improve the look and feel of our hair. Many of us forget that proper nutrition is one of the most important things to help nourish those gorgeous locks. A balanced diet that is predominately plant-based can help you get the key nutrients necessarily for keeping your hair, skin and nails in great shape. The best vitamins and nutrients for hair growth include lean proteins, omega-3 fatty acids, fat-soluble vitamins, B-complex vitamins, and iron. A Mediterranean-style plan packed with fiber-filled produce, 100% whole grains, and healthy fats is one of the easiest ways to get these essential nutrients.

On the other hand, what you eat can also have a dramatic effect on hair loss. Consider replacing processed and packaged foods that are very nutrient-poor for more whole, real and natural foods. Many of these processed items are loaded with additives and artificial ingredients that you just don't need. Plus, these processed foods can wreak havoc on the gut. Having a healthy gut flora is essential for helping with nutrient absorption to bolster the hair, skin, and nails.

If you&rsquove recently noticed significant hair loss, your first step is to check with your physician as it may indicate an underlying medical condition. Before starting any supplement regimen, you should always speak to your doctor first. While the additional B vitamins can help in specific cases (like if you have an underlying condition causing a deficiency), they can also cause negative effects, like dangerously altering lab test results. Supplements also often provide unnecessary biotin that far exceeds what your body can actually use. Considering that most people can get all the B vitamins they need in food, buying these supplements is likely just a waste of money.

When it comes to specific foods, you'll want to load up on these healthy hair all-stars and add them to your grocery cart ASAP.

Salmon is a good source of omega 3 fatty acids. Omega 3s keep the scalp healthy, which is important because a dry scalp can make the color of your hair appear dull. Other sources of Omega 3s are algae, krill, fresh fruits and vegetables and nut oils.

Low-calorie diets are usually also low in important hair nutrients. Such eating plans tend to slow hair growth, dull the hair and could also lead to hair loss. Keeping a balanced diet rich in vitamins, minerals and protein should help you keep your natural hair color.

Reverse Graying Hair Naturally With Mineral-Rich Foods

Health Benefits Of Black Sesame Seeds

While there is not an abundance of research to promote these claims, there is plenty of anecdotal evidence. In fact, black sesame seeds have been used for this very purpose in traditional Chinese medicine for hundreds of years.

Black sesame seeds are packed with fiber, vitamin E, phytosterols, lecithin, oligosaccharides, selenium, phosphorus, calcium, potassium, magnesium, folate, copper, zinc and iron.

But, the two specific substances that are believed to help darken hair fibers are sesamin and sesamolin.

Some of the other health benefits of black sesame seeds include:

  • Delaying aging
  • Protecting skin from UV rays damage
  • Reducing blood cholesterol levels and preventing hardening of the arteries
  • Reducing blood sugar levels
  • Supporting liver and kidney functions
  • Improving health of the reproduction system
  • Boosting the immune system and preventing oxidative stress
  • Improving brain health
  • And many more!

If you would like to include black sesame seeds in your diet, remember that they are best consumed in powder form (ground). You can buy lightly toasted black sesame seeds powder from here. Add them to your blender when making smoothies, or pre-grind them into powder form to be sprinkled into your oatmeal, soups, salads or any dishes. You will love the heavenly nutty smell.

It took me about two to three months of daily eating black sesame seeds powder, to see some results. New hair growth will appear in your natural hair color. So be prepared to consume it for a few months for good hair results, and at the same time improve your health.

Health Benefits Of Green Juices/Smoothies

With green juices/smoothies, the idea that they can help reverse gray hair is something that many juicers have been talking about for many years. Though, green juice drinkers who noticed positive results have stated that it probably took a few months before they discovered that less gray hair are growing out.

There are tremendous health benefits from drinking freshly-extracted green juices or smoothies. Go here to learn more about why you should be drinking green juices, and if you’re new to juicing learn how to make your own tasty green juices.

Creating your own green juices or smoothie recipes is not complicated. You can find many recipes on this website, with their various health benefits.

Once you get the hang of it, it can be fun to experiment with different combinations of greens. Try to stick to a blend that contains 20% fruit and 80% greens.

To take advantage of the health benefits of black sesame seeds, you may like to make a green smoothie and throw everything into your blender. If using a juicer, add your pre-ground black sesame seeds after juicing, stir and serve.

Here is a simple green smoothie recipe to help get you started.

Juice Recipe:

  • 2 heads of bokchoy or Romaine lettuce
  • 2 big kale leaves (add stem if juicing)
  • A handful of arugula (rocket salad leaves)
  • 4 ribs of celery
  • 2 green apples
  • 1 lemon
  • 1-inch fresh ginger root
  • 1 cup of coconut water (only if blending into smoothie)
  • 1 tablespoon of black sesame powder

If you are dealing with premature gray hair, then consider adding more green smoothies and black sesame seeds to your diet. Green smoothies are easy to prepare and incredibly nutritious, while black sesame seeds can be added to almost anything that you eat.

You should not have to rely on commercial hair products to fight gray hair when there are natural solutions available. Start by having at least one green juice or smoothie every day, but remember it is an anti-aging lifestyle. You will see an overall more youthful appearance, better health and hair that will turn back to your original youthful color.

Some of the links I post on this site are affiliate links. If you go through them to make a purchase, I will earn a small commission (at no additional cost to you). However, note that I’m recommending these products because of their quality and that I have good experience using them, not because of the commission to be made.

About Sara Ding

Sara Ding is the founder of She is a certified Wellness Health Coach, Nutritional Consultant and a Detox Specialist. She helps busy men and women identify their health issues at the root cause, in order to eliminate the problems for optimum physical/mental health and wellbeing.


Thank you for all your informative, helpful, interesting and amazing articles! Enjoy sharing with my friends! Keep up the good work!
All the best,
Teresa Carpio ❤️