It is well known that nutrition has a profound impact on health. What we eat can cause us to gain or lose weight, have allergic reactions, or even experience exhaustion or high levels of energy. It stands to reason that nutrition would also impact hair growth and hair loss. There may not be a magical fruit you can eat that will arrest hair loss or trigger growth, but there are some important facts about nutrition and hair loss that might affect your dietary decisions.
Stress affects every aspect of your well being. When you are under stress, you are likely to lose or gain weight, experience physical ailments like headaches, and are more susceptible to illnesses. Stress also affects your ability to focus, think clearly, and deal with problems, including hair loss. Since a poor diet interferes with your ability to deal with stress, it also affects how you deal with hair loss. When are eating a nutritionally balanced diet, you’ll be better equipped to cope with the emotional effects of hair loss.
Eating Disorders and Malnutrition
Eating disorders such as bulimia and anorexia nervosa lead to malnutrition and this is may instigate hair loss. When a body has deficiencies in energy, protein, and micronutrients, such as vitamin A, iodine, and iron, it reacts by presenting physical symptoms. These include dry skin, brittle nails, and hair loss. This is one type of hair loss that has a great likelihood for reversal. When a malnourished person re-establishes a healthy and nutritious diet, hair growth will often resume normally. However, long term eating disorders may cause permanent hair loss.
Sugar, Insulin, and Testosterone
Sugar itself does not have a direct effect on hair loss. However, since sugar does affect the balance of hormones in the human body, it does have significant considerations for hair loss sufferers. The balance of hormones is one of the greatest factors that cause or prevent hair loss. Specifically, dihydrotestosterone, a breakdown or by-product of testosterone, is one of the primary contributors to hair loss.
Because there is a direct link between levels of insulin and testosterone, when you control your insulin, you will affect testosterone levels as well. Insulin levels are directly related to your sugar intake. So, by controlling the amount of sugar you consume, you affect your insulin and therefore control testosterone levels. These, in turn, affect levels of dihydrotestosterone and therefore impact hair loss.