This past weekend as I was admiring my daughter Britta’s thick tresses I began to feel a little melancholy creep in, remembering when MY hair was like that. The last several years my hair has thinned dramatically compared to its’ “glory days.” It’s disconcerting to say the least when you run your fingers through your hair as you’re washing it and LOTS of hair comes out. I’ve even talked to my doctor about it because I know there are medical conditions that can cause higher than normal hair loss. Fortunately (unfortunately?) my hair loss seems to be your garden variety hair loss that comes along with the honor of growing older. :-)
However, even though it seems to be my destiny to have thinner hair as I “mature” (my mother has experienced the same fate,) I have discovered there are quite a few things I could be doing that would give my hair more of a fighting chance.
Here are 13 natural remedies for hair loss for your consideration (and mine), to help slow the progression of hair loss and maintain healthy locks for as long as possible.
Consider Your Diet
Protein is the building block of the tissues in your body, including your hair. Make sure you are consuming enough proteins in your diet. The best sources of protein are milk, egg whites and fish.
You also want to eat foods high in omega-3 fatty acids—such as salmon and mackerel—two or three times a week, or sprinkle a tablespoon or two of freshly ground flaxseed onto salads or cereal each day.
Increase Vitamins & Minerals
Vitamin A is crucial to healthy hair because it “works with the fat synthesis.” Food products rich in vitamin A include leafy greens, carrots, and eggs.
Vitamin B12 creates more creation of red blood cells, which ultimately provides more oxygen for your body!
Vitamin C and Iron – save your hair with iron supplements paired with vitamin C (which aids iron absorption.)
Vitamin E also encourages circulation in the body and helps grow new blood vessels, which helps hair to grow.
Some of the most important minerals for hair health are — calcium, copper, iron, magnesium and zinc. You can find lots of these in your favorite vegetables, or you may want to consider taking a daily mineral supplement.
Many people who begin losing their hair early or without explanation find they have a hormonal imbalance. If you have other hormonal symptoms, look into natural supplements for hormone regulation and foods that promote healthy hormone levels.
Talk To Your Doctor
There are several health conditions that can lead to hair loss, including stress, thyroid disease, anemia, and medications for heart disease. Talk to your doctor to make sure it’s not one of these other issues.
Drink More Water
Staying hydrated is crucial in tissue growth and health. The hair shaft itself is largely made up of water. Set a goal to drink AT LEAST 64 ounces each day. Also, avoid carbonated sodas all of which will weaken your immune system and make your hair more likely to fall out.
Smoking reduces circulation, and this includes blood flow to the scalp. Drinking alcohol and caffeine will hamper the immune system and cause further hair fallout.
Keep The Peace
Believe it or not, most of the time, the root cause for hair loss is stress and tension. Try meditation or yoga to help reduce stress and calm your mind.
Regular exercise allows sweat to clean out and unclog your hair pores. The exercise will also make you healthier overall which will help you grow longer, stronger locks.
Oil Scalp Massages
Scalp massages help stimulate the hair follicles to increase hair growth! Take any natural oil – olive, coconut, almond – add a few drops of lavender or rosemary essential oil to it, and massage gently into your scalp. Put on a shower cap and leave it on for an hour, then shampoo your hair. Follow this remedy once a week. It smells great and is very relaxing! Your locks will seem thicker and stronger than ever.
Lavender, rosemary, and thyme have been shown to help hair growth and prevent thinning or balding. Try massaging the essential oils into your hair after shampooing, or you can make this Rosemary & Lavender Hair Rinse that my sister Rebecca created.
You can rub your scalp with garlic juice, onion juice or ginger juice. Leave it on overnight and wash it thoroughly in the morning. (I personally will stick with essential oils!)
Green tea contains antioxidants which prevent hair loss and boost hair growth. Apply warm green tea (two bags brewed in one cup of water) on your scalp and leave this mixture on for an hour and then rinse.
Be Kind To Your Hair
- Set your hair dryer on cool and low settings, and minimize your use of flat irons.
- Don’t dye your hair more than one or two shades its normal color: The more severe the color change, the more chemicals you require, which can make hair break.
- If you use hair gel or hair spray, don’t wait for it to dry before you comb through it, because the hair will harden and be more likely to break.
- When hair is wet, use a wide-toothed comb instead of a brush, and LIGHTLY comb through hair; avoiding any pulling and tugging.
- Avoid unnecessary brushing, combing, curling or straightening. Excessive use of these tools and techniques will weaken the hair at the root level.
Getting on board with these natural hair loss remedies can help a LOT in preserving the hair you have and making it thicker and lusher in the process. However, despite doing everything “right”, there’s always the chance that our genes may dictate that continued hair growth just isn’t in the cards.
We can’t necessarily alter what nature has in store for us, but by using these natural remedies, we can slow the progression of hair loss and maintain healthy locks for as long as possible.