The perks of using L-cysteine in your diet

L-cysteine

Earlier Nutrafol talked about what scientific research on L-cysteine says, and here is a recap of the study made:

A German research study from 2000 examined the role of this amino acid in hair loss and hair regrowth. Researchers divided people who were suffering from massive hair loss into two groups. One treated with a combination of L-cysteine, millet seed extract, and pantothenic acid, while the other group received a placebo.
After four weeks of continuous treatment, researchers observed the initial results with a microscope. Three months in it was observed that the group treated with L-cysteine combination therapy showed a decrease in hair loss and their natural hair growth was restored. Whereas there was no improvement in hair loss in the control group that received placebo.

But how does it work in terms of hair loss…?

L-cysteine is an amino acid which means that it is one of the building blocks of proteins in your body, which also plays a key role in the synthesis of new protein. This is why it is so important in terms of hair loss and hair treatment – protein is simply an essential component.

Food sources that contain a good amount of L-cysteine

Your body does manufacture L-cysteine on its own, beginning with another essential amino acid called methionine. But there are a number of food sources which contain cysteine, that are high in protein as you might have guessed. And those are:

  • Pork
  • Poultry
  • Turkey
  • Duck
  • Cottage cheese
  • Ricotta
  • Yogurt
  • Eggs
  • Dairy products
  • Red peppers
  • Garlic
  • Onions
  • Broccoli
  • Brussels sprouts
  • Oats
  • Granola
  • Wheat germ
L-cysteine
With the right amount L-cysteine, studies show that your hair will get thicker and have more volume.

How does L-cysteine work?

L-cysteine helps your body synthesize new protein tissues by serving as an ingredient in those tissues. When it is included in a supplement as N-acetyl L-cysteine, you body is able to convert it into cysteine and glutathione, an antioxidant with powerful benefits. When you feed your body with antioxidants, you help your body to fight free radicals, compounds which cause damage to cell membranes and DNA. Which mean that many of the effects we perceive of as aging are actually the result of this kind of damage. So by taking the right amount of cysteine, you are keeping your body looking and feeling young.

 

The effect of L-cysteine

  • L-cysteine is doing wonders to your skin, besides from eliminating those free radicals mentioned above. It helps your body to create new skin tissue called collagen. Collagen is what is keeping your skin young and as you get older, your body has a more difficult time replacing lost skin cells. And since collagen is a protein tissue, it is easier for your body to make more when you include L-cysteine in your diet.

 

  • L-cysteine is doing wonders for your hair as well. Healthy hair is made out of keratin, which is another type of protein. Cysteine helps your body to make many different types of protein, which is also helping your hair out. This does not only give your hair more volume, but also helps against hair thinning and hair loss.

Vitamins and minerals are good for our body, but they are not all we need. Many forget that amino acids, the building blocks for proteins, are also necessary. With cysteine in your everyday diet, your body can synthesize new collagen and keratin, giving you luxurious hair and radiant skin. Choose a supplement that contains L-cysteine and other protein building blocks to support good looking and luminous hair.


Photos by: Jake Turner and Dhara Shah via Flickr.

Beer for Hair: Treatment, Benefits, and More

beer rinse

Beer for your hair? We’ll cheers to that! Washing hair with beer has many benefits for your scalp and hair. But why is washing hair with beer good for your hair? Here’s a closer look.

Benefits of Beer for Hair

Beer, that ever-so-popular brew, can add strength and shine to dull, limp hair. The best part is that you don’t need to drink the beer to get the benefits. Using beer for hair growth and improved appearance is as simple as applying it to your scalp and hair.

Why is beer good for your hair? The malt and hops in beer are loaded with protein, which nourishes and strengthens your hair. By putting beer in hair, dry and damaged hair can be repaired to its former lusciousness, thanks to the nutrients. The protein binds to hair that’s become dehydrated from blow drying, styling and harsh weather, leaving the hair restored and with more body.

The benefits of beer for hair don’t stop there. Using beer in hair can also make your hair shinier. As the proteins bind with hair cuticles, the newly smoothed surface will better reflect light, making your hair look shinier. Beer also contains B vitamins, which will help make your strands shiny.

 

Stylist Luigi Parasmo, who has worked for on runway shows for couture brands like Versace, Armani and Dolce & Gabbana, believes beer can make everything better in the hair department.

Parasmo says beer for hair works well because the alcohol acts as a cleansing and shine agent while also having a softening effect.

beer rinse
If you do not want to rinse your hair with beer, transfer the mixture to a spray bottle and spray it on instead, using it as a leave-in conditioner.

Beer for Hair as a Shampoo, Rinse or Leave-in Conditioner

We’ve explored what a beer rinse can do for your hair before. If you need a reminder of how to use beer in your shampoo or conditioner regimen, here’s a reminder.

To use beer as a hair rinse when you wash your hair, mix it at room temperature with an equal amount of water and add two tablespoons of apple cider vinegar. The apple cider vinegar will help lessen the beer smell. After you shampoo your hair, use the beer rinse as your conditioner.

For best results, let the mixture soak for a few minutes before rinsing. While a beer rinse can be too drying to use every day, doing it once or twice a month works as well as a pricey clarifying shampoo when it comes to removing buildup from hair products.

A beer rinse isn’t the only thing that you can do. You can also use beer as a leave-in conditioner. For a leave-in conditioner, transfer the mixture to a spray bottle, spray it on and go. As mentioned before, the proteins in beer bind to the hair shaft, which also creates volume. So if you have fine, thin hair, this can deliver tons of volume.

Many people have seen fuller, thicker hair by trying a beer rinse. But while this method fortifies existing ones, it doesn’t help you grow new hair. But because beer is rich in proteins and vitamins from the natural barley and hops, it does contain some necessary nutrients for supporting healthy hair.

Conclusion: How Beer Provides Benefits for Hair

  1. Beer contains protein, which can strengthen your hair.
  2. Beer has an acidic pH, which makes your hair shiny by tightening the cuticles.
  3. Beer contains hops, which are natural astringents.

Egg Mask For the Hair – What is it And How Does it Work?

egg hair mask

You may have heard that an egg mask is good for your hair, but how do you make one and why is it so good?

What is an Egg Mask?

Using an egg mask to get beautiful hair is one of the oldest tricks in the hair care world. It is also really cheap, as you can use normal eggs from your fridge. Aside from just cracking an egg open over your hair, there are many different ways of making a mask.

How Does it Work?

Eggs are full of proteins and biotin, which is an ingredient in many hair supplements that makes the hair healthy and strong. Raw eggs add moisturize and shine. It also conditions the scalp and supports hair growth. That is because of all the protein, which is a main building block in hair.

How Do I Make an Egg Mask?

Here are some simple ways of making an egg mask at home.

Damaged hair will feel like new again with an egg, banana and honey mask. You make this by mixing an egg and a banana and then adding three tablespoons of milk. Then add as much honey and five tablespoons of olive oil. Mix, apply on scalp, and let sit for an hour. When you rinse it out, use cool water so the egg does not cook! Then wash as usual with shampoo. The olive oil and milk will add extra strength and shine, while the banana and honey increases the moisture provided by the egg.

A super simple trick for all hair types is the classic egg mask. This will increase moisture and make the hair shiny. The only difference is that you use an egg white if you have oily hair, and the whole egg for normal to dry hair. Mix it with a couple of drops of lemon juice and beat the mixture until fluffy. Apply it to your whole hair and head, cover with a shower cap and leave on for about 20 minutes. Then rinse as usual, but with cold water, and wash with shampoo.

For longer and stronger hair, try the egg and yogurt mask. Fatty Greek or Turkish yogurt is full of nutrients, protein and fat. Its probiotic properties are good for the scalp and can help calm a sensitive or infected scalp. Just mix an egg with one to two tablespoons of thick, natural yogurt. Whisk them together until creamy. Work the mixture into your scalp and the ends of the air so it is drenched in it. Leave in for half an hour and then wash it out.

By Emma von Zeipel

The Essential Protein – The Link Between Keratin And Hair Growth

Keratin and Hair Growth

Some may not know that keratin and hair growth are closely linked, but keratin happens to be one of the most essential components in having strong and healthy hair. For people that have problems with brittle hair or hair loss, taking supplements or eating protein-rich food may help ensure your hair is sufficiently supported, helping your body produce more Keratin and healthier hair growth.

What Is Keratin?

Keratin is a protein that is formed by the combination of eighteen different amino acids. It plays an important role in hair growth, hair regeneration, and overall hair health. Keratin is produced through the multiplication and differentiation of cells, which are present beneath the scalp skin layer.

Some of these keratinocytes move out to the edge of the hair follicles in order to make up the outer and inner root sheaths of the hair, which are the protective layers around the hair follicle. The remaining  become elongated in shape to give rise to the hair shaft. During this process, the keratinocytes will be filled with a lot of keratin fibers. When they have produced enough keratin fibers they die and leave the system.

Why Keratin And Hair Growth Are Connected

Every hair on your head consists of 90% keratin. It gives your hair strength and elasticity and because it is made up of long chains, it allows the hairs to turn, bend and fold without breaking. Keratin is not just elastic in nature but also insoluble in water. This increases its strength even more and is why the hair can withstand both extremely high and low temperatures. If you have enough keratin in your hair, the hot summer rays and striking cold winds of the winter are less harmful to your hair.

This is why hair products meant to protect your strands from the heat of styling tools such as flat irons, curling irons, blow dryers or coloring tools contain keratin. Applying keratin externally acts as a protective barrier for the hair and protects it from the harmful effects of these radiations.

Keratin and Hair Growth
Keratin is a protein that makes up 90% of every hair. It helps in keeping the hair strong and shiny.

Be Careful In Hot Sun or Cold Weather

Although hair can tolerate environmental stressors if it is supplied with sufficient keratin, consistent exposure to them at extreme levels can damage the bonding between the keratin strings, which are majorly responsible for maintaining the shape of every hair. Once the long strings of keratin get damaged and broken, keratin loses its non water-soluble property and it’s washed away. Because of this reason, many hair care products contain keratin as a potent ingredient to prevent keratin deficiency within the hair follicles.

Keratin also plays its role in making the hair shinier, suppler, and thicker in volume. In case of dry hair, keratin-containing hair oils and shampoos are recommended since external keratin therapy provides maximum protection against loss of moisture from the hair. If you want some extra keratin from the inside, some natural hair health supplements contain a bioactive type of keratin.

What Can You Eat To Get More Keratin?

Keratin is not found in any food, but if you eat food that is rich in protein and specific vitamins, it can help your body produce more of the hair-important protein. It’s not only great for your hair, but also for your skin and nails. Here are some examples of food that can help your body produce more keratin and healthier hair growth.

Sulfurous Foods
Sulfur-rich amino acids make up proteins like keratin. You find them in foods with a lot of protein, meaning meat, beans and eggs, and also some vegetables like onions, kale and asparagus.

Protein-rich foods
Even more protein – so red meat, chicken, eggs, fish, yogurt and dairy products. Vegetarian options for high protein foods are beans, nuts, quinoa and nut butters such as peanut or almond butter.

Biotin-rich foods
Biotin helps metabolize the amino acids that produce keratin. You can find it in foods like nuts, beans, whole grains, mushrooms and cauliflower. Also, many hair supplements have biotin high up on their list of ingredients. Just remember that biotin is water-soluble, so it can be lost when cooking food in water.