Hello Healthy Hair Tribe!
Over 50 Million people in the US suffer from hair thinning and hair loss and most of us do not really understand why. I believe the reason for the majority of our hair thinning and hair loss is simple… Blood flow.
I love to use the analogy about feeding our hair like we feed our lawn, here’s a breakdown. To make our hair thicker, fuller, stronger and longer, we need to make sure that we have an adequate blood supply flowing to our follicles. We need to remove all the barriers that stand in the way of our hair follicle's ample blood supply. When we have a dead patch of lawn we irrigate it, water it, fertilize it and if that doesn’t work, we dig it up, replace the soil and add new turf. To revive a “dying” hair follicle, I believe we need to open up the blood flow and “fertilize” it with minerals. When we are too late in the hair game and calcification has occurred, the “new turf” would be considered hair transplants. Quite an interesting analogy… Are you still with me?
Addressing our hair loss cosmetically is the first step, but we can also take a look at what's going on internally. Did you know that hair loss is an indicator of an underlying problem? We have to get to the root of the problem (pun intended!) and it’s different for every person. So let’s go under the surface and look at what is causing our hair loss. I believe there are 3 main contributors that restrict blood flow and cause hair loss:
1. DHT (dihydrotestosterone) Build-up
3. Lack of Minerals
1. DHT Build-up is the first barrier to a healthy blood supply at the root. As adults, we convert 10% of our testosterone to form “DHT” a day (yes, we all have it). But not all of us have what I like to call “Venus flytraps” sitting at the base of our follicle. These Venus flytraps intercept and store our DHT at the root thus causing “genetic” hair loss. We can remove DHT with “DHT blockers”. To keep it simple, there are 2 kinds of DHT blockers: pharmaceutical and natural. Both have risks when taken by women who are pregnant and/or breastfeeding, because DHT is a hormone that is responsible for sexual development. There are also risks for women using pharmaceutical products because women are not able to take prescriptions (ex. Propecia) for DHT buildup without severe side effects. In contrast, the natural world offers great DHT blockers that work well for women and men to combat hair loss with no known side effects (except a possible environmental allergy).
Recommended Remedies (DHT Build-up): I recommend using saw palmetto as a natural DHT blocker. Saw Palmetto is a small palm along the Atlantic and Gulf coast that produces fruit. The fruits and extracts of the fruits have been known to naturally reduce DHT levels at the hair follicle. You can ingest saw palmetto supplements or you can apply saw palmetto topically. Supplements are more commonly found in the marketplace today. However, I believe that topicals are more effective than using supplements because they go directly to the thinning area, instead of having to be absorbed through the stomach first. I recommend using our saw palmetto topical grow Black Label or grow Youth Nectar on your scalp 2x a day.
2. Inflammation is the second barrier to a healthy hair follicle. As we age, the likelihood of us developing inflammation in our body increases. There are many causes of inflammation; this is where it gets complicated! This is why I believe it's confusing to say, genetic hair loss versus non-genetic hair loss, because we consider DHT build-up to be genetic hair loss, but inflammation can also be inherited from our parents. Our bodies are likely to do one thing or another based on our genetics, but it is the choices that we make that determine how we choose to age or how nice of a head of hair we will have. This is called “epigenetics.” The pharmaceutical world reduces inflammation with Minoxidil (Rogaine), which is a vasodilator (medicine that dilates blood vessels). Vasodilators are used to treat hypertension, angina and congestive heart failure. The side effects can be dizziness, fast/irregular heartbeat, chest pain, unusual weight gain, tiredness and difficulty breathing… and not to mention can lead to more inflammation! I have found that we can take a more natural approach to reduce inflammation with ingredients that are from nature and by identifying what we are putting in and on our bodies and making sure we eliminate or dramatically decrease the toxins we intake. We can also address other inflammation caused by bad digestion, diet, stress, medication, disease, etc.
Recommended Remedies (Inflammation): I recommend eliminating the inflammation causing hair products you own. These are ones that have soy, wheat (gluten), parabens, silicones, artificial fragrance, sulfates and chemicals that are commonly found in most shampoos and conditioners. Instead, opt in for a natural shampoo and conditioner that will help end the cycle of inflammation from your hair care routine. I love Ekatala and Living Libations. I recommend using our formula grow Black Label or grow Youth Nectar on your scalp 2x a day, which is free of all inflammation causing ingredients above. All grow Nectars have natural ingredients that are known to reduce inflammation to create an ideal environment for hair growth.
3. Lack of Minerals are the last part of the puzzle because minerals keep our entire body youthful. Our skin, hair and overall health are compromised when we are mineral deficient. This piece of the puzzle seems easy to fix, but there are a few things working against us here:
• Most of the American population is mineral deficient because our soils are lacking, as well as our diets.
• We don’t really understand the difference between vitamins and minerals.
• If we are good at taking supplements, most of them are vitamins, not minerals.
• If we are taking supplements expecting our hair to benefit from them, it is actually the last place our body will send nutrients because our bodies see our hair as a commodity. We have to keep our organs and tissues healthy first and the rest (if there is anything left) goes to our hair. With all these things working against us, what is the best and most affordable way to increase our mineral intake?
Recommended Remedies (Lack of Minerals): I recommend our favorite greens mix by Premiere Labs called Premiere Greens Dietary Supplement. It is loaded with the essential minerals needed on a daily basis for a healthy, youthful body. We also recommend our grow Nectars on dry hair 2x a day.
I will be diving deeper into each of the three contributors of blocked blood flow this month. Next week we will explore the first barrier, DHT, and our “Venus flytraps” that collect it at our follicle.
Wishing You Lots of Healthy Hair Love!