I thought I was going to go bald! Seriously!
I was terrified of washing my hair or even brushing it, because handfuls of hair were falling out every time.
I would get out of bed in the morning and see a ball of hair on my pillow! I had no idea what was going on and how to put an end to it before it was too late.
I had tons of long and thick hair in my teens and at age 30 I was left with only a thin layer!
When hair loss strikes, it is definitely a symptom that raises concern. After all it is something hard to hide.
The amazing news is that my hair doesn’t fall out anymore! I probably only see 4 or 5 strands in my hairbrush, and none on my pillow. And, I am even seeing new strands growing which I am really ecstatic about.
Hair loss is a topic very near and dear to me, because I struggled with it for over 15 years, and I was really terrified about it.
In this post I will share with you exactly what was causing my hair loss and how I brought it to a halt.
HAIR LOSS IS A SIGN OF DEEPER IMBALANCE
If you’re experiencing hair loss, whether it has just begun or has been going on for awhile, do not delay treatment. Hair loss is a sign of a deeper imbalance and left unchecked, you may develop other symptoms or never see the return of your beautiful hair.
Hair loss has several different causes, and none of them has anything to do with your hair itself.
You can put on all the treatments, conditioners, and masks, but if your hair doesn’t get the nutrients it needs from within,to grow new hair and keep your hair healthy, you will just be spending your money on expensive treatments for no reason.
The health of your hair is a reflection of your internal health, and most issues with hair have to be addressed from within.
Let’s look at some common causes of hair loss:
One of the biggest culprits for hair loss is medications. Let me share a bit of my story in this regard:
I was treated for under active thyroid for several years. I saw several different specialists and they all told me that I was going to be on thyroid medication for the rest of my life,and that my hair loss was just an effect of my under active thyroid.
Luckily they were wrong!, because I have been medication free for 2 years and my hair is coming back!
But before I get sidetracked talking about how i walked away from my doctor’s office and never came back (maybe i will write another post about that). As it turned out, my thyroid medication dose was too high! I had become hyperthyroid! And that was causing my hair to fall out by the handful!
It took me many years to figure that out, but I am sure glad I did!
Now, I know you might not be on thyroid medication, but maybe you are taking other pharmaceutical drugs, and since it is known that all drugs block metabolic processes, it is a good idea to address your health issues from the root so that you don’t have to deal with the side effects of most medications.
THE SECOND BIGGEST CULPRIT:
When your body thinks it is running from a lion on a regular basis because of your lifestyle, a poor diet, a specific health condition, a high stress job, dysfunctional relationship, etc. You are spending precious nutrients in dealing with excess stress, and your body doesn’t have the resources available to build hair.
Hair is metabolically expensive, which means it takes a lot of resources and energy to build hair. If your resources are scarce, your body doesn’t think it is a priority to build hair, and so your hair falls out, gets dull and dry.
Some important nutrients to watch out for deficiencies are: Iron, B vitamins and Omega 3’s fatty acids.
Regardless of the cause, there are lots of things you can do to restore the health of your hair and even grow new hair.
If you look at any other article on hair loss, you might find a long list of causes related to hormonal imbalances such as: cortisol imbalance, thyroid hormone imbalance, testosterone, progesterone and estrogen imbalance, DHEA, and blood sugar imbalances.
You will also find a long list of tests that you can do to find those imbalances.
However, if we recognize that our body is designed to work with minimal effort from our part- meaning: we don’t have to tell our heart to pump blood or tell our stomach to break down the food we eat. Do we really have to go into such level of detail to find exactly which hormone is low or high, and try to “fix” us that way?
…..I’m not totally convinced about that approach. Specially taking into consideration that a blood test is just a snapshot of what is circulating in your body in that moment, but it could be very different the next day!
The body constantly adapts to it’s environment, and while testing is appropriate in some instances, when it comes to hair loss, I am not sure you necessarily have to worry about having multiple tests done.
HERE IS WHAT YOU CAN DO :
If you have a hormonal imbalance, I am almost positive that it didn’t just happen to you out of the blue. Likely, your diet and lifestyle played a big role.
And, if the way your body is now is consequence of what you have been doing in the past, then changing what you have been doing can bring your body back to balance.
We know that Stress is the biggest epidemic in our society and the cause of most illnesses and diseases.
When I say Stress, I mean: Physical, Emotional, Environmental, Chemical.
So, If you are struggling with hair loss, I challenge you to take a close look at your life and identify all the ways your body is under stress:
HERE ARE SOME POSSIBLE SOURCES OF STRESS:
- Diet: poor quality, under eating, overeating, restrictive, low calorie, eat too fast, lack of pleasure, tracking and counting calories or nutrients.
- Exercise: over training, sedentary life, exercising for fear of gaining weight.
- Work: difficult boss, frustration, long hours, frequent travel, dissatisfaction
- Relationships: dysfunctional marriage, abusive relationships, lack of social interaction, dysfunctional family, lack of self-love, etc.
- Health: vaccines, inflammation, chronic pain, frequent infections, digestive problems, difficult pregnancies, painful periods, surgery, being overweight, etc.
- Environment: Air quality, chemicals and pollutants in the air and water.
- Lifestyle: lack of “me” time, lack of rest, lack of time in nature, extremely busy lifestyle, frequent travel overseas, perfectionist personality, etc.
ONCE YOU HAVE IDENTIFIED YOUR MAIN SOURCES OF STRESS:
Address you main stressors, commit to reduce ,or even better ,eradicate your stress sources, while you focus on taking care of yourself and nurturing yourself, incorporating joy and laughter into your life. Then come and tell us how much hair you are losing?
While you work on reducing your stressors, here are other strategies that have work for me and that I recommend to clients who struggle with hair loss.
HERE ARE MY TOP 5 WAYS TO STOP HAIR LOSS:
1.- Eat enough food. Fats, proteins, carbs, as well as vitamins and minerals are needed to provide your body with what it needs for proper functioning. If you are on a strict diet or very low carb diet it might not be sitting well for you.
2. Focus on healing your digestive system. If you are not absorbing nutrients correctly, it doesn’t matter how healthy and organic your diet is, it is just going into the drain. Iron deficiency- very common in women could be a cause of hair loss. Stomach acid is necessary for iron absorption.
IN ORDER TO DIGEST PROPERLY YOU NEED:
- To have your nervous system working correctly. Your nervous system controls every organ in your body. Getting regular chiropractic adjustments can fix digestive issues and save your life, like it did mine!
- You also need enzymes. Your body is supposed to produce enough enzymes but when things are not optimal it is a good idea to take additional enzymes for a period of time, while you work on healing, and fixing the root cause
- Bile will help you digest fats and get them into your system, If your liver is congested, your might not be producing enough bile.
- Healthy Gut Flora. We know that the research on the importance of gut bacteria is quite compelling and there is much more to be discovered about the role of bacteria in our body. Consuming fermented foods like sauerkraut, is a great way to increase beneficial bacteria in your gut.
- Stomach acid. The acid in your stomach can break down anything! It is very powerful, but if you deal with tons of stress and your digestion is off, you are probably not producing enough stomach acid to break down proteins into usable amino acids that your body can use, and to extract minerals from the food you eat.
Also, if you take certain medications like Nexium or any other kind of acid blockers or antacids, you are not breaking proteins well and not absorbing minerals from your diet.
If you are in childbearing years, you might need to supplement with Iron, but before you do, speak with your health practitioner and have your levels checked.
The next 3 are super easy tricks that you can start now. They work!
3. Essential Oils did miracles for my hair.
I tried rosemary, lavender, and peppermint. They all act in different ways to prevent hair loss and promote the growth of new hair. These oils penetrate the scalp and even though you apply them topically, they work internally.
Method: you can use a carrier oil such as castor oil or even olive oil, mix it with the essential oils and massage on your scalp preferable after washing your hair and at night before bed. I make a mixture ahead of time and put in in jar or spray bottle. The amount is approximately 5-6 drops of essential oil for every tablespoon of oil.
I noticed less hair falling out just a few weeks after starting to use them. All these oils can also help you relax your nervous system and sleep better.
4. Try the inversion method.
This is great for increasing blood flow to your scalp and hair follicles. It consists of basically massaging your scalp while doing a “forward fold” with your head hanging. You can do it standing or seating. Use the oils mentioned above to do the massage.
5. Wash your hair less, and brush it every night.
When you wash your hair too frequently you get rid of the natural oils on your scalp, which are necessary for the health of your hair. As you brush your hair you are spreading those naturally produced oils on your hair strands.
As for washing, the ideal frequency will largely depend on where you live, and the specific characteristics of your hair, but if you wash it every day and your hair is falling out, try washing it less.
I wash my hair once or twice a week because my scalp is dry and I live in a part of the world where winters are very cold and dry, so I don’t need to wash as often.
What you use for washing your hair is also important. Even the organic, “natural” brands have tons of ingredients. I would recommend picking one with the least ingredients and chemicals possible.
You can also add a few drops of the lavender, peppermint or rosemary oil to your shampoo.
Wrapping it all up
I know how devastating losing your hair can be…..I really do!
But before you get confused trying to figure out which hormones are out of balance, and think that you might need to get a bunch of tests done, you can start by doing something a bit more intuitive and within your reach.
You can focus on bringing your overall health into a balance that works for your body. Like I mentioned earlier, looking at the health of your digestive system is one, the quality and quantity of your diet and your main stressors are great places to start.
I know it sounds easier than it is, specially if you are trying to do this on your own. I know from having dealt with multiple health issues, that the more support you have the better.
If you are really struggling with hair loss and can’t seem to find the answer, I would love to chat with you about ways you can overcome the issue. Click Here for a complimentary coaching session.
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