I used to have very thick, shiny, wavy hair. I was on a heavy SAD diet and then drastically changed my eating habbits pretty much overnight and lost about 25 lbs. For about two years I cut out fat entirely from my diet and for the past 3 years have also stopped menstruating. My hair is now thin and dull. Since I have very low estrogen and do not get my period I think this has attributed to my hair. I know estrogen has a strong impact on hair. 2 years ago I also developed Alopecia. It makes me so sad, I miss my beautiful hair and I don’t know how to fix it! I have uped my fat intake and tried maca for about 3 months but nothing has worked. Any advice?
Try to eat a lot of flax and flaxoil, avocado, sprouted grains and other sprouts, carrots, beets, cucumbers. These are all very good for the hair. Try to rinse it with ACV mixed in some water, you may add some rosemary essential oil to it. It is very good for the hair, rosemary stimulates hair growth. Nettle tea is also fantastic for hair growth.
I’ve read that it’s not good to lose your period. Not to raise alarm, but it might the hair and period loss might be a sign that you’re not getting enough fat – women need fat. When you lose your period it’s because your body thinks there’s a drought, putting non vital systems to rest in order to save energy and resorces for vital ones. I agree that more fat like avocados, nuts etc should be added, like Flybaby writes.
fats are good and so important. i suggest flax, flax, flax as well as sunflower seeds and pumpkin seeds. we all need these essential fatty acids for our health. chia seeds, almonds and walnuts are great too!
The hair is the last area on your body to get nutrition. So if you aren’t getting enough for the whole body, the hair isn’t going to get any. Yes, get those fats in! I would suggest to start taking some MSM too – very good for the hair. Also, what sort of shampoo and conditioner do you use if any? Please consider switching to more natural ways to clean your hair (check out our Shampoo or not to shampoo thread in this forum – it is pretty long but lots of us here are having success with this method). The reason I suggest this is because your hair is in a very malnutritive and fragile state right now and you need it to be strong to get growing back again.
Other things to eat for your hair are cucumbers.
Start doing scalp massages too – be gentle since you have hair loss. You want to get the blood flowing up your scalp so your follicles get some much needed nutrition.
For the fats, I would recommended eating the avocadoes and also coconut oil. Woman who use coconut oil have the most beautiful hair. Eat it and massage a bit into your scalp when you do your scalp massages (use it sparingly though since it is heavy and can get oily!). The other oils mentioned by others are good too – but definatley coconut oil – but it in your smoothies. You can even just take a tablespoon yourself. Oh, I would recommended Brazil Nuts.
When people severely restrict their diets, it can catch up with them in ways like hair loss. Look at anorexics – many of them start losing their hair. The body considers the hair not really something that is necessary to keep the body alive and functioning so that is way it is one of the last things to get nutrition. Since you were heavy SAD, one of the things that some rawies experience when they go raw is hair loss but it eventually grows back – they think it is the bodies way of getting rid of old “SAD” hair.
If you can, get a copy of David Wolfes “Eating for Beauty”. It is more of a guide but it suggestion of which raw foods and supplements you can take for hair.
Thank you all so much for your response. I have started to include flax, avacados, seeds, nuts, and coconut butter into my diet a few months ago but maybe not enough? My GYN says its my brain telling my body that right now is not a good time to have a baby because it is a high stress enviornment. I am confused because I am not underweight I am 5’4 and 118lbs. Also, my hair grows fast but just so dull and thin. So could it be just stress or is it my diet? I will deffinately try MSM queenfluff I really appreciate the advice.
try adding more greens to your diet. Green smoothies are an easy way to do this especially with a high speed blender
i hope it is just your fat intake, but you might want to get your thyroid checked, changes in hair are a big red flag for thyroid dysfunction.
Almonds, walnuts, avocado and coconut to get more fats. Its pretty easy to mix at least one of those into the majority of meals. Mix flax seeds into smoothies as well to get Omega 3s
lovetobenatural, you are not the only one. I almost have the EXACT same hair issue as you! I added MSM into my diet but I think its too soon to see any improvements in hair quality. Gosh, I remember how EVERYONE used to comment on my hair being incredibly shiny, thick, brown with a tint of gold in light…now, there’s no other word to describe it than lifeless. I am also 5’4 and…I haven’t checked my weight for a while. I think I am a little below you. For ME, the increase of fat intake, especially fax and flax oils didn’t help much. Maybe I wasn’t having enough? I have to admit though, my skin is reeeally good and people complement me about it alot. I just don’t know why my hair is missing all the vitality. I don’t have my period yet either. Got it once when I was 13 and then never again. Now I’m 17. Wierd huh?
I hope I don’t sound like an attention-seeker, like “oooo look how beautiful I am!”. TRRRUST ME, I am far from that. But I just wanted to make a point that the greens, veggies, fruits, sprouts, raw fats (and/or MSM?) has been doing my skin wonders, but not my hair.
queenfluff, has anyone mentioned yet that you should be some kind of a professional hair consultant type person? Or are you one already? You are very knowledgable and helpful, I might as well add wonderful! when it comes to hair topics!!!!
Hi Samilicious -
Thanks for the compliments! :)
Actually, I used to be a hair stylist which is why I know alot of stuff about hair.:) I went to beauty school and I have a degree in cosmetology but I don’t use it any more. I still know how to do hair though. I cut my bf’s hair and my own (and other people if they ask). So I guess I have always been “into” hair – trying to figure out how to get my hair to grow better and faster etc (I used to fry my hair out all the time when I did hair trying new colors and perms – I was my own guinea pig) so I am always reading and looking things up. Plus I used to be a product pusher myself so I know how those things work.
Believe it or not, I don’t have the best looking hair either – it is on the thinner side ( probably diet related too – got thinner when I went veg and a little more when I went vegan and a little bit when raw – I am not 100% though) and I am getting some greys! Eek! I have some breakage and it is on the dry side.
But I have gone up and down with bad hair and some hair loss issues so I know how it is to have hair crisises so I like to share with others what has worked for me and the knowledge I have. :)
I think it is unfortunate that people get ripped off by buying all these expensive products that promise miracles.(and believe I have bought them too) and obviously don’t do anything. It is bad enough you are losing your hair, you don’t want to lose your money too!
I learned something today that I didn’t know – for the MSM, make sure you get the OptiMSM. It is apparently the more purer form of MSM which is created by a distilling method. I wasn’t taking the MSM for a while and I finally went out and bought some today. And please make sure there isn’t any caking agents or other stuff like that in it – the company will use that as filler so they can give you less MSM. I bought the Vitamin Shoppe brand – 16 oz for 24$ – and it is the OptiMSM and there are no fillers. Oh also they have Organic Coconut oil – a huge bottle (29 oz) for 13$ – it is cold pressed so my bf says it is raw. Pretty good deal!
Some more “food for thought” too – the only part of your hair that is “alive” is the part that is still in your head that you can’t see -meaning the hair you can see is dead – the alive part is in your follicle where the hair is created and grown – so for you to get the thickest and best hair you can, you need to do stuff to those follicles – which is why you need to get the nutrition inside to get good hair coming out. You can still use things to get the hair you can see looking nice too – but the hair you have outside the scalp is what you body produced in the follicles. So, if your hair doesn’t look great there, it didn’t get created properly inside – which is why it makes sense that have to have great hair you must grow it first!
I will go through my Eating for Beauty book tonight and make a list of the foods mentioned by David Wolfe for good hair. I’ll post them when I am done (I need a refresher myself!). But don’t forget to do the scalp massages – those have always been “no fail” for me in growing hair. Circulation really is key – so exercise (stand on your head if you want too). My hair grew its best when I was working out everyday – and I don’t do that anymore so I know that is why my hair isn’t at isn’t best right now!
Ok, I browsed through my book and got a list. This list is not exhaustive of course – there are plenty of other foods listed – I just put some examples. Also, many of the foods I put here and in the books have more than one of the important vitamins or minerals needed for great hair so you might be able to pick a handful of good ones and have all the important nutrients covered!
Pretty much all these nutrients are needed in some supply for good hair:
Sulfur – MSM, onions, radishes, hemp seeds, Aloe Vera (has MSM)
Silicon – cucumber skins, nettles (good to use on your scalp and hair in juice form too – I have use this and it makes the hair really strong)
Vitamin A – Arugala, carrots, Papaya (you need the vitamin A combined with the sulfur and silicon for good hair)
Zinc – Coconuts, coconut oils, nuts, pumpkin seeds
Vitamin C – Papaya, lemons, oranges (MSM needs Vitamin C to work its best)
Iron and Manganese – Onions, Spinach, Sea veggies
Protein – Hemp Seeds (hair is 97% protein and the rest is other things esp. MSM)
Selenium – Macadamia nuts, Brazil nuts
Vitamin E – Olives, olive oil, watercress
To get rid of grey hair: Copper (hemp seeds, watercress), B Vitamins (Rejuvalac, raw sauerkraut or kimchi)
Like I said list isn’t exhaustive and their may be other things you might need that you are deficient in too (biotin is said to be important for hair too but wasn’t really mentioned in the book – swiss chard, almonds and walnuts have biotin)
wow looks like I have some shopping to do! I was just wondering what exactly is MSM? And could anyone share their experiences with take it? Thanks again queenfluff!
Wow, queenfluff. I have been eating many things on that list and have lately noticed fewer grays and definitely thicker hair. I only use a little shampoo 1-2x a week, and lately have been putting jojoba oil on the ends while it’s still wet. It really adds a nice shine.
lovetobenatural, MSM is an organic form of sulphur which is quickly lost when we cook our foods. Also, because of pollution in our atmosphere its harder to obtain naturally. Check out this link: http://www.davedraper.com/msm.html
One other thing to consider is iron levels. This might also explain why you stopped having your period. My hair has thinned also, and when I went to donate blood I barely passed the iron test. Nettles have 3x the iron as spinach and it’s more absorbable also. You can buy them from health food stores already dried, or you can pick them and dry your own. Mine dried in about a day. Once they’re dry they can’t sting you anymore. Try to stick to the new growth through as I read that older leaves contain an irritant to the kidneys.
Thanks for the list Queenfluff. I read the book but haven’t put it all together yet and don’t always eat enough variety.
If I were to focus on certain things in the list – just based on what I know about hair – I would focus on the things with iron, MSM, zinc and protein (although David Wolfe says that what is normally referred to as a protein deficiency is really an MSM deficiency but he does mention protein in the book). You really need a combo of things to get good hair. Hemp seeds cover alot of the important nutrients. In fact, in the book the list of things that hemp seeds have is really long. I think they have all the minerals listed above and some other great ones too. They have sulfur, zinc, iron, manganese, silicon – the only one not on the list is selenium. They also have tin (david wolfe says a tin deficiency is responsible for male pattern baldness) and iodine – two other minerals that have been said to be important for hair.
Raw Chocoholic – Good point about the iron – I have always been slightly anemic since I went veg. Iron is important.
lovetobenatural – Just wondering if you have alot of stress in your life too? You mentioned “stressful environment”. Stress is one of the number one causes of hair loss. You may not notice the corelation. You have a super stressful time and it is over and than a month or two later your hair loss might increase. Also too just wanted to mention (so you don’t get discouraged), that it can take a while to recover from hair loss – if you have been deficient in many thing for a long time, it can take a while to build up those deficiences and as such it can take just as long to recover from them. Definatley keep up your new regime for more than three months. I would look for improvement at around six months.
Darn it! I am very VERY stessed out, personally. In fact, I visited a doctor back in..january I believe, because of these really bad upper stomach pains and he told me I have dypepsia due to chronic extreme stress (I’m still recovering from a really bad trauma, worse than you can ever imagine in your entire lives! Worse, but I’m not ready to share it. Still keeping it inside, keeping all the pain to build up in me, thus, dypepsia). So there’s MY answer to my hair problem. Thank you for pointing it out Queenfluff! And thanks for the nutritions tips!!! On this site, I consider you the hair expert!
I think there is a direct correlation between my hair thinning, loss of my period, and the amount of emotional stress I have been under. This being said, I am confused if this is something I can correct through nutrition or if I have to reduce the stress, which I am not sure how to do. Samilicious, did you notice your hair problems arose after your stress levels increased?
lovetobenatural – Yes, you can correct this. The thing is that stress depletes nutrition. You could have been eating everything good for your hair, taking MSM, doing scalp massages etc – the works – if you were very stressed out, that would trump it all.
So, if your stressful period is over, you can now start over again. But at this point it doesn’t matter whether your hair loss is from stress or bad diet. Either way your body is deficient right now so start on getting the right things in you. But also, stress reduction is part of the regime – if you have too much stress (not talking everyday stress – unless you have problem controling that too – but major stressful life events) and dont get it under control, it will hard for your hair to recover.
If you are in a constant state of high stress for a long time, yes, you can suffer hair loss from that.
One thing you might want to check out is your scalp: does your scalp feel tense? Is it normally like that? Having a tense scalp can be a sign of stress – this is bad for the hair in the way that the tension in your scalp can reduce the circulation to the follicles. Scalp massages (esp if you use an electric one) can definately help with this. When my scalp gets tense the electric scalp massager really helps. Gets rid of headaches too! :)
Just do a search for stress and hair loss – you will tons of articles on it.
lovetobenatural, yes, I’m pretty sure there is a connection there. Even for my non-raw dad! He has been under SO much stress through most of his life and he is nearly 45 years old and mostly bald. I’ve seen others his age with WAY more hair then him. He has been this bald since I was pretty young, but recently when I started forcing him to try some of my morning green smoothies, he has little bits of hair growing (he is also less stress now)!
Also, I don’t know if this is the case for you but I am confident that the weather plays a huge role in contributing to my depression. Especially during winter time, I’m in an aweful mood. And then when I’m in the sun, all of a sudden I feel this eruption of happiness and relaxation spread through me. I don’t know how to describe it but it feels so good to be in the sun! I thought of getting some vitamin D supplements but spring is here and the weather should be getting warmer so I thought I’ll leave it until next fall. In addition, sunflower seeds are a good source of vitamin D (but I don’t have it often enough), and there is the spectrum light bulbs that you can use instead of regular light bulbs that are supposed to be good because they mimick sunlight and many claim they are effective (lasts longer and saves more energy than regular light bulbs too!)
I wish there was cure for stress but there isn’t. Its all up to us…
Samilicious, When I was not raw this much I used to have the same problem winter time.However it might can be related to the stress of exams too. My best ideas against depression is exercise, aromatherapics oils, hot bathes, I have a salt lamp, its light is really nice and it sends negative ions to the air, which is very good against the harmful earth radiation, eg Hartmann lines wich surrounds us.
I was just browsing through David Wolfe’s site and I noticed he had an aritcle on there about Eating for Beauty. It is short article but talks about silicon and hair and a few other things.
So I thought it might be a nice read for those getting on the “hair diet” :
im gonna chime in on awhim..lst time i went to the stylist she said my hair looks better than it ever ahs since she has been doing my hair like 7 years….granted i swam a ton for most of those years and now rely on yoga and biking instead( chlorine started to affect me negatively and im to chicken shit to swim in the ocean! ;) any how the two new additions to my diet since my last appointment have been daily kombucha and hemp seeds (only a tablespoon of those)my hair is long and its abused regularly in the sun, and with highlights….. jsut my two cents worth
Stock up on red bell peppers, brazil nuts, and MSM. These foods are all very high in sulphur and will help to build up your hair and nails as well as rejuvenate your skin. Also try to consume avocados and flax seeds or flax oil. like flybaby stated above. God bless!
I just have to say, there is a remedy for stress. There are calmers like lobelia and kava kava but for me what really worked was a supplement from Gaia herbs for adrenal fatigue, When we stress, our adrenals release cortisol and other feel good chemicals, over time our adrenals become depleted. This supplement has rhodiola, holy basil, ashwaganda, wold oats and schisandra. I started laughing-alot more and alot longer than ever before. I felt a new sense of calm I hadn’t experienced, like I could ride the waves instead of geetin’ all streesed out about every little thing! Highly recommend it!
Hey omshanti, that is great! I guess those hemp seeds are really worth it! They really do have ALOT of good stuff in them! I want to start adding them in my diet again.
Greens! Hi there, you didn’t mention how many blended greens you consume. Try having a quart of blended greens a day (mix them in a high speed blender with fruit so they’re tasty) that might help!
Hi Winona -
If you do green smoothies, I would do the greens that have the thing you need for the hair – like spinach.
I don’t eat any blended greens at all. I don’t like green smoothies. Honestly, I haven’t really noticed that rawies who are into green smoothies really have any better hair than people who don’t do green smoothies.
I thought I would bump up this topic to see how everyone is doing with their hair loss. I for one am still having problems. I am currently eating 2 to 3 tablespoons of hemp seed and am taking 1 tablespoon of Vitamineral Green daily.
I also bought John Masters Deep Scalp Follicle Treatment & Volumizer for Thinning Hair in addition to trying a new supplement, GNC’s Women’s Ultra Nourishair. I just started using these products so it is way too early to notice any difference.
Nuttgirl – I know you might not want to hear this but you are wasting your money with the some of the products you are buying. I have used products similar to that john Masters products before in my life too and I can tell you they don’t work. You want good hair you have to grow it.
The ingredients in the John Masters products aren’t all that bad except it is mostly water and glyercin. There are lots of herbs in there that are good for hair. But honeslty you would be better off buying these bulk and drinking them as a tea or making a rinse out of them and massageing it into your scalp. It is always best to have these things at full strength and not diluted in the mixture.
I am not a big supporter of vitamins for hair (and I used to take those hair vitamins ALL the time – I had rows of them on my dresser!) because I have come to realize that to get your vitamins and nutrients from your food is the best source of them. The only supplement I take is MSM.
I am starting to develop some natural herbal products for hair including a hair tea which I will be selling soon. Look for post in the Other section when they are ready for purchase.
If you haven’t been doing it, start doing scalp massages. Getting circulation up to your scalp is really important and honestly in all my years of trying to get my hair to grow it has been the one thing that always works when I go back to it.
I am not sure of your hair condition and your lifestyle (do you have alot of stress?) but hair loss can be a combo of many factors. Keep your stress down, eat raw foods that are good for hair, get your massages in and keep your hair in good shape (if you hair is fragile and damaged, your hair will continue to fall out – get a good trim or cut a lot of it off).