Do you ever wonder why some people who seem young and relatively healthy resort to wearing hair wigs and trying hair loss replacement treatments? The answer may be found in their eating habits. Dieting, especially extreme dieting that deprives the body of vital nutrients and vitamins is a known and proven cause of hair loss. In fact, extreme dieting sometimes referred to as “fads” is the leading cause of hair loss. So while you admire someone who is quickly shedding pounds, they are likely shedding their hair as well.
Extreme diets often focus on reducing the amount of calories and fat you consume, but don’t always take into account the importance of a nutrient-rich diet. When the body is deprived of important nutrients, hair shafts are weakened, which causes hair breakage and slows down the rate of hair re-growth. The natural hair growth cycle is disrupted so that hair follicles that were growing are converted prematurely to the cycle’s “resting” stage. This occurs specifically when the body is deprived of zinc, vitamin vB12 and biotin. Hair will not resume its growth unless those nutrients are replenished by consuming foods. Zinc is found in wheat germ, fish and egg yolks. Eggs, meat and poultry are found in vitamin B12. Add biotin to your diet by eating brown rice, lentils, sunflower seeds, green peas, oats, and walnuts.
Other deficiencies that lead to hair loss are vitamin A, folic acid, iron, vitamins B6 and B12, vitamin C, and copper. A lack of vitamin A causes a buildup of cellular debris in hair follicles, which hinders hair growth. Do not cut out foods fortified with vitamin A, such as liver, eggs, fortified milk, and fish oil. Without folic acid, iron, copper and vitamins B6 and B12, the normal production of hemoglobin (red blood cells) is impaired, meaning that the body carries blood and oxygen at a slower rate to body tissues, including hair. Foods rich in those nutrients include fish, pork, chicken, liver, leafy vegetables, beets, broccoli, avocado, orange juice, nuts, and legumes. Vitamin C is needed to keep body tissues together. If it is lacking, split ends in hair result. To avoid this from happening, eat citrus fruit, tomatoes, peppers, potatoes and green leafy vegetables.
Balanced diet is essential
A combined and balanced diet that includes the foods mentioned above will prevent nutrition deficiency. And as a bonus, these foods are extremely healthy and low in fat. The good news about hair loss due to dieting is that it is completely reversible. Hair solutions are simple if you follow the following steps:
– Eat a balanced, nutrient-rich diet.
– Take a multivitamin with iron daily (as a compliment, not as a replacement, to your balanced, nutrient-rich diet!)
-Do not lose more than 1-2 pounds a week.
-If you are having difficulty putting an end to extreme dieting, you may be suffering from an eating disorder. Contact a health professional immediately. There are many treatment options and support groups available to help you.
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