Hair Loss – Diet and Lifestyle

April 15th, 2010

We all lose hair on a daily basis. But a few individuals lose more hair strands which eventually lead to balding of the scalp. Hair loss may be permanent or temporary in nature. While permanent hair loss may occur due to hereditary reasons, temporary hair loss has many causes such as chronic illness, pregnancy, unhealthy diet, oily scalp, insufficient blood flow to the scalp, hair styling, etc.

Diet and lifestyle plays an important role in growth of hair. Nutritional deficiency leads to thinning of hair and hair loss. Here are a few tips regarding diet and lifestyle that will help in preventing hair loss:

Diet Tips:
•    Have foods that are rich in proteins such as milk, green leafy vegetables, cottage cheese, eggs, etc. Protein is a major hair growth promoter.
•    Avoid oily food and food rich in sodium. These are harmful to the kidneys and increase the acid levels in the blood that leads to hair loss.
•    Increase the level of protein in your diet by increasing the intake of milk, curd, wheat germ, sprouts and so on.
•    Increase monosaturated fats in your diet as it helps in hair growth and revitalises hair follicles. Monosaturated fats are found in most nuts and extra virgin olive oil.
•    Reduce intake of carbohydrates as it converts to glucose during the process of digestion in the body and glucose does not promote hair growth. Carbohydrates are present in foods such as potatoes, rice, pasta, etc.
•    Reduce intake of coffee as it depletes the levels of vitamin B, vitamin C and zinc in the body. These vitamins are essential for hair growth.
•    Avoid intake of alcohol as it is not only high in calories and sugar but also depletes vitamin levels in the body.
•    Drink lots of water, at least 8-10 glasses a day. This not only flushes out the toxins from the body but also hydrates the hair strands.
•    Increase iron levels in your diet by consuming lots of beetroots, liver, wholegrain cereals, eggs, raisins, dates, etc.
•    Soy protein is known to promote growth of hair. This is available in foods such as cheese, soy milk, yoghurt, etc.

Lifestyle Tips:
•    Avoid shampooing your hair on a daily basis. Shampoo depletes the hair of its natural oil and makes it fragile.
•    Avoid using hairdryers too often. Hair-drying frequently makes the hair strands dry. Rather dry your hair with a towel.
•    Try and keep stress at bay. Rising stress levels are known to cause heavy hair loss.
•    Do not comb your hair while it is wet. This breaks away numerous strands. Instead dry your hair thoroughly with a towel.
•    Try and avoid treating your hair with various chemicals, dyes, straightening or perming.
•    Oil and shampoo your hair regularly. Shampoo within 24 hours of applying oil as it can block the pores of the scalp.

Try and integrate these habits into your daily routine.

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