Does bread crust make your hair curly? You might have heard this old wives’ tale at some point in your life. Chances are, it happened while you were either refusing to eat bread crust or eating a lot of it (in someone else’s opinion, humph). Maybe it was your mother or grandmother who clued you in on this info. Although there is a fascinating history behind this idea, the science tells quite a different story.
According to experts, there is absolutely no scientific evidence to support the idea that eating bread crust will make your hair curly. Furthermore, there is no proof that the consumption of bread crust alters the appearance of your hair at all. Whether you have straight hair, wavy hair, or curly hair depends heavily upon your genetic makeup. So as you might expect, your preference regarding bread crust probably won’t change your genes. But wait: If this is all totally fake, where did this seemingly random idea even come from?
Experts aren’t totally sure about the origin of the myth, but they think it first emerged at least 300 years ago in Europe. Back then, many folks there were at a higher risk of starvation, which can cause some people to lose their hair. Obviously, the healthiest people around at that time tended to have more food — including bread with crust — and thus more hair. However, it was also widely thought that these well-off folks usually had curly hair specifically. For some reason, bread crust and curly hair became intertwined by word of mouth — and people continue to pass the myth on to this day. Some folks even take it a step further by claiming that if you don’t eat bread crust, your hair will fall out (which is also not supported by any science, by the way).
While eating bread crust is most likely not going to change anything about your hair, that doesn’t mean there isn’t any value to eating the crunchiest part of the bread. Experts say there is evidence for a higher concentration of nutrients in the bread crust. For example, one particular study found that the crust of baked bread had eight times more of a cancer-fighting antioxidant than the soft center.
If you’re looking to get the most nutrition out of your bread, it’s usually better to choose a whole-wheat loaf over white bread, due to the higher content of vitamins and fiber present. Oh, and don’t forget to eat the crust while you're at it!