Can your diet affect hair loss?
Just like our skin, the condition of our hair is an outward sign of inside health. If we do not get enough sleep or drink enough water – it shows on our skin first right? Just like our skin, the cells that make up each strand of hair also require a steady supply of key nutrients and vitamins.
Therefore, diet plays a substantial part in the health of our hair and problems may arise from a deficiency or an excess of certain nutrients in your diet.
Blood Tests and Hair Analysis
During a patient’s first consultation at Life Hair, they will take a sample of hair and examine it to assess damage, patterns of hair loss, identify genetic (inherited) influences and check the scalp condition.
If we suspect an autoimmune disorder or any other conditions (e.g. vitamin deficiency) might be causing hair loss, we will run a series of blood tests to check what the problem may be.
When a patient’s blood tests come back and they show nutritional deficiencies, the patient will be given advice on what supplements they may need to take, or food they may need to incorporate into their diet. The patient will also be given hair loss treatment options to stop the hair loss and to encourage growth in coming months.
If the patient is losing hair due to a nutritional deficiency, we may recommend Mesotherapy, a non-surgical procedure that uses multiple tiny injections of vitamins and other ingredients. This process regulates growth factors in the scalp of the patient suffering from thinning or those wanting to prevent hair loss in its tracks.
However even with these hair loss treatment options, we still need to fix what is going on, on the inside to ensure that we truly stop the hair loss once and for all Protein – vital for making hair resilient and healthy. Choose chicken, fish, dairy products and eggs, as well as vegetarian sources such as legumes and nuts.
- Iron – the hair and its roots are fed by a nutrient rich blood supply. When iron levels fall below a certain point, you may experience anaemia, which interrupts the nutrient supply to the follicle. This subsequently affects the hair growth cycle and may result in shedding. Red meat, chicken and fish provide iron and vegetarians can include lentils, spinach and other leafy green vegetables such as broccoli, kale and salad greens.
- Vitamin C – aids the absorption of iron so eat these in conjunction with iron-rich foods. The best sources are blackcurrants, blueberries, broccoli, kiwi, oranges, papaya and strawberries.
- Zinc – a lack of this mineral can lead to hair loss and a dry, flaky scalp. A good source of zinc are oysters, beef and eggs.
- Biotin – Too little biotin can cause brittle hair and may lead to hair loss. Include biotin rich foods such as whole grains, liver, egg yolk, soy flour and nutritional yeast.
- Omega-3 is found in the cells that line the scalp and provides the oils that keep one’s scalp and hair hydrated. Eat oily fish for your omega-3s such as salmon, sardines, trout and mackerel and plant sources including avocado, pumpkin seeds and walnuts.