Keratin is a renowned name in the beauty world, right from hair care to skin products, one can find numerous essentials flooding the market. Well, keratin is not only beneficial in strengthening and restoring hair but also supports maintaining healthy skin and nails. Further, several studies have shown that it is effective in averting liver injury, supporting wound healing and safeguarding embryos.

To get a better overview of keratin, its functions and foods that can boost keratin levels read this article.
Keratin rich foods

What Is Keratin?

Keratin is a building block of the body, that are tough fibrous protein which forms the structure of the epithelial cells. These cell lines surface inside and outside the body. They are the structural protein found in the skin, hair, and nails. It also forms the lining of the internal organs and glands. Few types of keratins are responsible for wound healing and apoptosis.

Apoptosis is the process of unwanted and abnormal cell death. This process is crucial in averting cancer, keratin also copes with stress and shields the body’s tissues.

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Role Of Keratin

Keratin For Hair

Keratin protein has positive impacts on hair health, including moisturising and softening. Keratin is an important element of the hair cortex that contributes to the strength of the hair shaft and restores damaged hair fibres.

Keratin For Skin

Keratin holds a functional role in maintaining the integrity and stability of the epithelial cells of the skin.

Other Effects Of Keratin

Several pieces of evidence have shown that Keratin helps protect the placenta and the embryo. It also aids in the wound healing process and averts the cells from their death. Aside from these, keratin also safeguards the liver against oxidative stress and injuries.
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Nutrients For Keratin Formation

Certain essential nutrients help the body secrete keratin and uplift the health of the skin, nails, hair, and other tissues. Adding these nutrients to the diet regimen supports boosting keratin production.

Biotin: Biotin or Vitamin B7 holds a significant role in keratin production and can help in the healthy growth of hair and nails.

L-cysteine: L-cysteine is an essential amino acid and a component of keratin. It is also required for collagen formation, maintaining the elasticity of the skin and metabolizing biotin, so the body can use it.

Zinc: Zinc is a vital mineral that holds a key role in uplifting skin health. It supports the reproduction of keratinocytes, the cells that make keratin.

Vitamin C: Vitamin C supports the formation of keratin and protects the skin from oxidative stress. Further, it also helps form collagen and slows down signs of ageing.

Also Read: Vitamin C Supplements: Incredible Health Benefits Of Taking This Immunity Boosting Pill

Vitamin A: Vitamin A plays a key role in the development of keratin and repairing skin cells.

Food Sources Rich In Keratin

There is a rich array of healthy food sources that naturally support the body to produce keratin. Add these foods to boost keratin production.


Adding eggs to the meal plan is a sure shot way to boost keratin production. As eggs are a great source of biotin, an essential vitamin involved in keratin synthesis. One egg offers 10 mcg of biotin and 6 grams of protein that promotes keratin production. Other nutrients available in bounty in this ubiquitous food include selenium, riboflavin, vitamin A and B12.

Also Read: Hair Health: 5 Superb Egg Masks For A Voluminous And Lustrous Hair-Infographic


Onions are not only the must-to add flavouring vegetable in cooking but also ramp up keratin synthesis. The allium veggie is rich in N-acetylcysteine, an antioxidant that the body converts into amino acids L- cysteine -which is a key component of keratin production.

Sweet Potatoes

Sweet potatoes packed with provitamin A carotenoids like beta-carotene are converted into vitamin A in the system. Vitamin A supports keratin synthesis and is essential for promoting skin and hair health.

Sunflower Seeds

sunflower seeds are a good source of biotin and protein that support keratin production and maintain skin integrity.


This summer fruit is bestowed with provitamin A, folate and vitamin C which support keratin synthesis and offer key nutrients for optimising skin and hair health.

Side Effects Of Decreased Keratin Production

Keratin is an extremely vital element of the body. Decreased keratin levels in the body lead to hair damage and higher rates of hair loss. It also makes the skin vulnerable to injury and fragile. Low levels of keratin lead to the breaking of fingernails. Liver injuries are quite common in keratin deficiency.


Keratin protein acts as an incredible support element to the structure of skin, hair and nails. Certain nutrients are essential for keratin syntheses such as biotin, inositol, vitamin A and protein. Consuming a wholesome and nutritious diet laden with foods rich in these nutrients can help improve keratin production in the body.