Have you tried—and failed—to return your hair to health by cutting back on blow-drying and by experimenting with different products? If so, you might want to check your pantry for what ails your tresses. Why? Because the nutrients you eat support new hair, skin and nail growth. According to naturallycurly.com, dieticians say the kinds of foods listed below can help you grow a gorgeous mane.

Dark green, leafy vegetables. Mom was right about eating your veggies, especially spinach, kale, broccoli and collard greens. These vegetables are packed with vitamins A and C, needed to produce sebum—an oily substance secreted by hair follicles and essential to natural hair growth and shiny tresses.

Salmon. One of the best hair foods—bar none. This tasty fish contains iron, vitamin B-12 and the dry-scalp fighter omega-3 fatty acids. An omega-3 deficiency can lead to dull, brittle hair, but not if you indulge in wild Alaskan salmon (safer from mercury poisoning), walnuts and chia seeds to help keep your hair and skin hydrated and glowing.

Zinc-rich nuts. Zinc deficiency can lead to hair loss. But hair do-gooders almonds and cashews are loaded with this mineral. Incorporate them into salads, or eat them as an alternative to junk food such as chips or cookies.

Olive and coconut oils. Cook your favorite foods in these healthy fats or sprinkle them on salads. Yes, they're guilty of moisturizing, softening and smoothing hair from the inside out.

Eggs. Enrich hair with this food's supply of proteins, vitamin B-12 and biotin, a B vitamin that is important in maintaining healthy hair growth. Eggs are great for your tresses no matter how you like them prepared—scrambled, hard-boiled or over-easy.

What's most important is that a balanced diet is key to healthy hair growth. Add these nourishing foods into your diet and watch your hair respond. Also, don't forget to exercise in addition to eating a nutritious, well-balanced diet.

Click here to learn more about the importance of eating a variety of foods for overall health.