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Gray hair is an inevitable part of the aging process. As you age, your body produces less melanin, the pigment that provides hair color, causing your hair to revert to its natural white color. While a diet rich in fruits and vegetables is key to good overall health, eating more fruits and vegetables will not turn gray hair back to its original color. That said, nutritional deficiencies may lead to premature graying, so eating the right fruits and veggies can help prevent hair from going gray too soon.
Why? Melanin gives hair its pigment, and copper is crucial in melanin production. Walnuts are rich in copper.
Why? Zinc helps keep color in your hair, so presumably foods that are rich in zinc will keep you from going gray. In addition to shellfish, zinc-rich foods include sunflower seeds, cashews and yogurt.
Why? Omega-3 fatty acids not only keep your heart strong, but also keep your hair strong. Other sources of omega-3 fatty acids are mackerel, lake trout, halibut, herring, oysters, sardines and albacore tuna.
Why? If you don't get enough vitamin B12, it can cause your hair to become dry, thin and prematurely gray. Chicken, as well as eggs, cheese and milk, are packed with vitamin B12. Some claim that large doses of certain B vitamins -- B6, B12 and folic acid -- will reverse the process of graying in three months. (Before you take massive doses of any vitamin or mineral, do consult your family doctor.)
Why? Folate (or folic acid) has been linked to better hair health, while lack of it has been linked to premature graying. Folic acid is found in broccoli, asparagus, beans, peas and lentils. Many foods in the United States, such as pasta, bread, rice and cereals, have been fortified with folic acid.