Is There a Direct Correlation Between Eating Gluten Free And Healthy Hair?

sb10062327o-001The list of gluten-free foods is large.  Many restaurants and grocery stores offer a variety of products to choose from.  Individuals who eat gluten-free foods often eat fruits, vegetables, meats, poultry, fish, beans, and legumes.

However, there are specific gluten-free foods that contain protein, zinc, A & C vitamins, biotin, and iron which are essential to hair growth. Those foods are: walnuts, carrots, pumpkins, potatoes, blueberries, salmon, spinach, chicken, broccoli, kale, and turkey.

By eliminating gluten from the diet, the body is able to absorb important nutrients, vitamins and minerals. When hair follicles also absorb those nutrients from the body, it causes the hair to strengthen, grow, and become healthier. When properly nourished, hair is elastic, shiny, strong, and less likely to break.

In addition to encouraging hair growth and vitality, a gluten-free diet has benefits for individuals living with alopecia.  Alopecia is an autoimmune disease that causes the body’s immune system to attack the hair follicle. It leads to hair loss and baldness and is associated with celiac disease.

In a recent study, Columbia University researchers found a link between celiac antibodies and severe alopecia ( If you struggle with hair loss or alopecia, a proper diagnosis of celiac disease or any other underlying condition would be necessary before making dietary adjustments. Therefore, please consult with your primary care physician before making the switch to a gluten-free diet.

While a gluten-free diet may be helpful in relieving symptoms of alopecia, it also has risks. For example, a gluten-free diet entails eliminating wheat, breads, pastas, and pastries. This could lead to nutritional deficiencies as many gluten-free products are low in B vitamins, calcium, iron, zinc, magnesium, and fiber (

Also, gluten-free products can be very expensive (  Ultimately, the choice to live gluten-free depends on your individual health needs, concerns about your hair, and your willingness to pay for more expensive food products.

Whether you suffer with celiac disease, are sensitive to gluten products, simply desire to adopt better eating habits, or seek to grow stronger, healthier hair, a gluten-free diet may be for you.

A gluten-free diet may be especially helpful for those living with celiac disease and suffering with alopecia.  A gluten-free diet strengthens the body by allowing it to absorb important nutrients that it would not otherwise absorb. In turn, those important nutrients travel through the body’s bloodstream, enter the hair follicle, and stimulate healthy hair growth.

Overall, it is clear that strong, healthy hair, whether natural or relaxed is linked to what you absorb in your body.  The body is a living organism that thrives off healthy foods and proper nutrition. In order for your hair to be healthy and strong, your body has to be healthy and strong. Thus, a gluten-free diet may be the ideal way for you to achieve your healthy hair goals.

Originally posted 2014-07-15 15:00:00.

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About Shani Collins

Shani K. Collins, MSW, MA., is a freelance writer and college instructor. You may visit her at

About Shani Collins

Shani K. Collins, MSW, MA., is a freelance writer and college instructor. You may visit her at


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  1. Tracienatural

    BlackHairInformation, thank you for this article! I can relate to how changing my diet has helped with my alopecia! What also helped me, I believe, has been removing the amalgam (mercury) fillings from my teeth. I believe that, along with a plant-based gluten-free diet, has helped my thryoid function better, resulting in an improved functioning of my intestines/absorption, and also helping my hair begin to grow back. Your article is very informative and I believe it will help a lot of women who may not realize the correlation between diet, health and their hair. Hopefully, the readers will not have to experience this the hard way. Thanks, again!

  2. Ashley

    I was diagnosed with Celiac Disease in August 2013. The inflammation in my body is finally disappearing and I feel so much better. The slightest crumb of gluten makes me very sick. I’ve been growing my hair for the past 4 1/2 yrs and had to big chop this past May due to a tangle disaster. I’ve already noticed my hair starting to grow back faster than when I did my first BC back in Dec.09 when I was consuming gluten unknowingly. Although it took 4yrs to get it shoulder length and I’m still traumatized over the 2nd bc, I think this time around my hair will grow faster and healthier. My diet has improved as I eat a lot of fruits, vegetables and I juice, as well as consume wheatgrass, and take hair supplements. It makes a huge difference!!! Now, I just have to take good care of my hair and practice patience : ) Take care and good luck with your hair journey ladies!

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