All this talk of Movember has got me to thinking about men and their attachment to their hair. Much like the moustache indicating the virility of a man, so does the amount of hair a man has on his head. It can be really distressing to lose your lid at a tender age (or for that matter, any age). Seeing as though I come from a health and wellness background, I thought I would give you some tips on how to keep your hair healthy and thick. Of course for some, hair loss is hereditary but for many, it has a lot to do with diet and lifestyle. So read on…
Please check with your doctor before following any new herbal or vitamin regimen.
Herbal Medicine Support
In traditional Chinese medicine, the hair is connected to the kidneys. The kidneys are like the back-up batteries in the body. If the body gets run down through stress, disease, poor dietary choices, even certain prescription drugs, it puts strain on the kidneys, and hair loss can result. It’s a direct channel. One way to support the kidneys is through taking adaptogen herbs such as Reishi, Fo ti (He Sho Wu), Maca and Rhodiola. These are my favourite family of herbs as they are effective and incredibly safe. They are all readily available any at good health food store or online. Adaptogens have been used for centuries to treat the kidneys, reduce stress and increase blood circulation; thus improving hair growth, luster and thickness.
Use a full spectrum B-Vitamin
B-Vitamins help the body to manage stress, improve memory and increase energy. B12 helps to negate hair loss as B12 is a component of hair. B12 is found in meat and in eggs. For vegetarians, it can be more difficult to get this vital vitamin. B12 shots and full Spectrum B- Vitamin liquid and tablets are available.
Rosemary Essential oil is also amazing at increasing circulation to the scalp and preventing thinning and balding. This remedy has been used since the time of Cleopatra for beautiful hair. Every day, massage a few drops of rosemary oil into the hair, starting at the roots. It will instantly make hair look thicker and fuller. Another benefit of increased circulation to the scalp is better concentration and increased memory retention.
Omega-3 fatty acids (fish oils)
Aside from being excellent for brain health, liver detoxification, reducing inflammation, improving vision, staving off depression and anxiety (amongst many other benefits), Omega-3 fatty acids are excellent at providing nourishment for follicles helping to grow them quickly and with more shine.
Wash your hair with a natural shampoo and as infrequently as possible
Now I am not suggesting that you become a dirty hippie overnight but, over-washing your hair can strip the natural oils from your hair making it course and brittle. Use a natural, Sodium-Lauryl Sulphate-free shampoo so there is no chemical irritation. I recommend http://www.livinglibations.com shampoo and conditioner or any of the Dr. Bronner’s Soaps.
Zinc and other Vitamins
Without zinc and other trace minerals, the hair shafts can weaken, causing hair breakage and slow re-growth. Zinc is good for stimulating testosterone and brain activity. Some food sources of zinc include oysters, red meat and liver. Zinc consumption is positive and beneficial, however too much zinc will actually cause hair to fall out because it will block the absorption of other minerals.
Additionally, increase your amount of vitamins A, C and E. These vitamins are anti-oxidants which help to scavenge free radicals in the body. Vitamin A increases skin sebum in the scalp. Vitamin C helps to maintain the health of your skin and hair. Vitamin E helps to condition the hair and improve scalp circulation. Use a combination of these three anti-oxidants for a myriad of benefits and better quality health.
There you go, a short and sweet guide to lovely locks. Commit to a new healthy hair routine for at least 6 weeks to start seeing results. It sure beats watching your mane minimize as it washes down the drain every day. Scary but avoidable stuff.