What are EFAs: Essential Fatty Acids?
According to Medicine Net, an essential fatty acid is an unsaturated fatty acid that is essential to human health, but cannot be manufactured in the body.
You can find Essential Fatty Acids (or EFAs) in foods such as flax seeds, pumpkin seeds and dark green veggies in the form of omega-3. Another fatty acid, omega-6, can be found in foods like nuts, grains and dairy. EFAs not only support healthy hair and skin, they also play major roles in bodily processes such as hormone production, regulation of blood clotting and proper thyroid/adrenal activity.
Though EFAs are important for many functions in your body, we are going to focus on the benefits EFAs have for your skin and hair…
Skin Benefits of Essential Fatty Acids
It seems as though our skin only cooperates with us when we are between the ages of 1 and 10, after that everything thing seems to go downhill. As teenagers we fall victim to acne and as adults we fall victim to wrinkles.
There is only a short time in between these ages where we do not have to deal with either. By incorporating more EFAs into your diet skin problems may start to slow down and/or reverse.
If you are suffering from either dry skin or acne, you may have an EFA deficiency. Both omega-3s and omega-6s have properties that help to build healthy cell membranes, thus building your skin’s natural oil barrier.
When you are getting the correct amount of EFAs your skin will feel more hydrated, while looking younger and more plump. EFAs can also reduce your skin’s sensitivity to the sun and skin flare-ups.
If you are ready for clearer, smoother skin, you may want to try to incorporate some of these EFA sources, or EFA foods into your diet and look for skincare products that have a significant EFA content:
Omega-6s: Grains, Poultry, and oils such as Olive oil, Coconut Oil or Avocado Oil and again, Canola Oil.
These are just a few food sources, but they will help to kick-start your journey to smooth, younger looking skin.
Hair Benefits of Essential Fatty Acids
Many people experience hair loss and hair thinning as they grow older. If you are suffering from hair thinning or hair loss, you may want to stay away from products that claim to help your hair grow, and instead add more EFAs to you diet.
Omega-3s play a big part in preventing hair loss by helping with blood circulation and cell growth; both of which are important for your hair follicles.
If you are dealing with increased stress in your life you may notice that you are losing hair more than than usual. By adding more foods with omega-3s to your diet, you may be able to counter the effects of stress. Flaxseed, in particular, has been proven to prevent hair loss due to lignans in the flaxseed, which can block enzymes that contribute to hair loss.
You are what you Eat
What we put into our bodies is usually reflected in our outer appearance. Though commercial products may work for some, there is no doubt that a healthy diet will work for nearly everyone. Take care of yourself with a healthy diet and exercise and you will see a marked improvement in the health of your skin and hair in a very short period of time!