1. Your hair is like straw
Your organs require adequate nutrition to function properly, and healthy hair follicles are no exception. Starvation diets that lead to severe protein-energy malnutrition can cause brittle hair — or worse, hair loss. Studies show diets that are low in protein, essential fatty acids, and nutrients such as vitamin C, zinc and iron are associated with hair loss, hair thinning and loss of pigmentation. Aim for lean sources of protein (think eggs and grilled salmon), plenty of fruits and vegetables, and seeds and nuts for healthy hair.
2. Your skin is aging prematurely
Aging is inevitable. But a growing body of research indicates a nutritious diet can promote skin health and delay outward signs of skin aging. A 2012 systematic review reported that a diet rich in vitamins A, C, D and E — in addition to key antioxidants and flavonoids — has beneficial effects on skin. To get the benefits, and a more youthful appearance, consume five or more servings a day of fruits and vegetables.
3. You have disastrous oral health
Inflamed or bleeding gums and cavities are both signs of a poor diet. Too much sugar is a culprit for cavities. In addition, swollen or bleeding gums often are associated with getting too little vitamin C in your diet. You can boost vitamin C with foods such as strawberries, tomatoes, leafy green vegetables and potatoes.
4. Your brain feels drained
Do you have trouble with your memory or with concentration? Struggling with fatigue? Your diet may be to blame. An adequate intake of omega-3 fatty acids is especially important; it plays a part in cognitive development at all stages of life. To get plenty of omega-3 in your diet, choose foods such as walnuts, flax seed, fish oil and wild salmon.
5. You have digestive discomfort
If you are tired of digestive discomfort, try bumping up your fiber intake by eating more whole grains such as brown rice and oats, in addition to nuts, seeds, and fresh or frozen produce.
6. You don’t heal properly
For a scrape, cut or larger wound to quickly and sufficiently heal, it needs an adequate supply of nutrients. Poor diets affect the strength of new tissue, recovery time and how well your body fights off any infection that creeps into a wound. Studies have shown that sufficient intake of calories, protein and nutrients is essential for proper wound healing. Focus on maintaining a healthy, balanced diet. Your immune system will thank you.
7. You get sick easily
Choose foods high in vitamins A, C, and E, zinc, selenium, iron, and folic acid. Start by increasing your intake of fresh fruits, vegetables and whole grains—specifically citrus fruits, leafy greens, popcorn (skip the extra butter and salt) and brown rice.