What we put into our body can have a significant effect on the way our hair grows and remains healthy. When we put nutrient packed foods into our body, not only do our insides jump with joy, but our hair follicles praise us by staying strong and shiny.

But just as our hair is impacted big time by healthy food, it is equally impacted by unhealthy food. Many people don’t understand the consequences of some foods on our hair, causing it to thin, or fall out, and for those already suffering from genetic disorders such as androgenetic alopecia, these foods can cause way more harm than good.

Below is a list of 4 foods to stay away from when considering your hair health. Trust me, your hair will be thanking you!

Diet Soda

Diet soda was once boasted as a great alternative for those that want to drink soda without all the sugars. But the truth is, diet soda is just as bad for you as regular soda, and even worse for your hair. What makes diet soda bad for your hair, are all the artificial sweeteners, specifically aspartame, which is linked hair loss. According to the FDA, aspartame can cause hair loss as well as thinning hair. It can also cause arthritis, bloating, depression, and impotency. Overall, stay away from the artificial sweeteners!

Starchy Whites and Sugars

Starchy whites and sugars need to be watched out for just as artificial sweeteners. I know, bummer! But if you want your hair to stay strong and healthy, these items should be avoided. Protein is extremely important for your hair, but sugar hinders the absorption of it. So although those sugary treats we know and love are delicious, your hair doesn’t like them so much. Same with starchy whites. Foods like white bread, cakes, pastries, or other over-processed starches are converted into sugar.

Sugar promotes inflammation, which floods the blood, causing a spike in insulin and androgens, binding to hair follicles and causing hair to thin and fall out. It’s not a fun time

Fast Food

Obviously, fast food isn’t a healthy option. Although that grease makes for one delicious meal, it’s not so delicious to your body, specifically your skin and pores. Greasy food means greasy skin, and this includes your scalp. As your pores become clogged, this can lead to hair follicle miniaturization, restricted blood flow, and clogging of the sweat pores. When the pores on your scalp get clogged, harmful hormones like DHT, a hormone known to cause hair loss, can get trapped, which ultimately leads to thinning and hair loss.

Alcohol

Alcohol might allow for a good night, but can effect the health of your hair greatly. Alcohol interferes with the absorption of essential vitamins and nutrients, while also dehydrating you in the process. This is what leads to those massive hangovers the next day. Specifically, alcohol slows the levels of zinc in your body, which is a necessary mineral for healthy hair and growth. The dehydration causes your hair to become brittle and is likely to break.

Take these four foods into consideration during your next meal. It could save the life of your hair, and who doesn’t want strong, shiny, healthy hair?