23 January 2015

Hair Loss and Diet

I have recently received many requests from women with hair problems (hair loss; thin, unruly hair etc.) They usually say that they have tried everything: supplements, hair packs, detox diets, green juices etc., and nothing seems to work.

The other symptoms that I have observed in these women are:
  • Anaemia*
  • Low Vitamin D
  • High HA1c
  • Higher fasting glucose, although still within normal range
*In my experience, once glucose levels (HA1c and fasting glucose) are brought back to normal values, results for Anaemia screen also go back to normal levels.

The problem is that I do not consider healthy the normal ranges for blood glucose:
  • HA1c, normal: below 5.6%. But I consider levels below 5.0% to be healthy.
  • Fasting glucose, normal: between 70 and 99 mg/dl (4 to 5.5 mmol/l). I have seen less complications in people whose fasting blood glucose is between 70 and 80 mg/dl.
My goal is to restore normal organ function with diet, by achieving low blood sugar levels. Please remember that high blood sugar (glucose) leads to diabetes. Diabetes is a vascular (blood vessel) disease, leading to organ damage. High blood sugar harms blood vessels, and nerves around these vessels. 

The same damage by sugar happens in the capillaries in the scalp. When blood sugars are chronically high, over time, they do not carry the necessary oxygen and nutrients to the organs. In the case of the scalp, this results in non-genetic hair loss and thinning of the hair.

The good news is that once blood sugar is normalised, hair loss is slowed down and stops with time in many patients. These are the improvements that my patients experience after a few months of blood sugar normalisation:
  • Heavier hair: their hair is not "electric" anymore.
  • Hair is more waxy and less oily.
  • No need for conditioner: very easy to comb hair, even when wet.
  • Hair loss slows down.
  • Less shampoo needed.
  • Hair does not get as curly as before on rainy days.
With today's technology, it is possible to measure the mineral content of your hair. However, a lack of certain minerals may not mean that you are not consuming enough of that particular nutrient. It might mean that the damage caused to the capillaries render them unable to deliver important nutrients to the tissues. Be careful when considering supplementation with vitamin or mineral pills.

If you have question, you can post them below or you can also contact me here.

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