Does a Vegan Diet Cause Hair Loss and Balding?
A few days ago, a friend contacted me with a question regarding veganism and hair loss.
“Have you ever heard of hair weakening or losing strength due to being vegan? We’ve (him and his girlfriend) been vegetarian for years and vegan for almost half and my girlfriend feels her hair isn’t as strong so we’ve researched and found some stuff but wanted an opinion from you.”
From my understanding and experience helping a friend with his hair thinning / loss issues, I can say that the health of your hair has very little to do with eating animal products or not. However, I do know that losing hair may be part of a detox phase as well, where your scalp is pushing out the toxic malnourished hair to make way for strong healthy hair to grow in it’s place. This happened to me when I started my raw vegan journey. Most people at this point will freak out and go back to eating the way they used to. Sadly, they are unaware that this is a natural process taking place. In any case, here’s what I suggest you try, and what has helped my friend really strengthen his hair and even regrow it!
1. Vitamin & Mineral Uptake: Hair loss and hair thinning can often be connected to vitamin and mineral deficiencies. Even though you may be eating a vegan diet, you’re most likely not getting all of the nutrients you need. It is essential to increase more raw foods into your diet. Cooked and processed foods tend to be low or even completely void of vitamins & minerals. But it goes even deeper than raw foods. I’ve discovered that although raw, organic fruits and vegetables are higher in nutrients than any other foods, they can still be low in minerals because most of the soil the food is grown in (throughout most of the world) is depleted / low in minerals. It’s difficult to find produce grown in mineral rich soils. I wrote a whole post on this issue because when I was on the 801010 diet, I discovered I wasn’t getting enough minerals. This led me to inform myself more on this topic and I realized that for many who don’t have access to the best quality foods (most of the world population), it’s REALLY important to supplement. I highly recommend these two complete mineral supplement brands:
-Vital Earth Humic Fulvic Blend (best in the market IMO)
-Concentrace (sold on Amazon) – cheaper.
Also B12 is really important too, and said to be essential when it comes to hair growth. Most people, whether vegan or not, are deficient in B12. For this reason, I recommend a raw vegan b12 supplement. I believe Dr. Gabriel Cousens makes and sells his own living b12 brand on his site, one of the best in my opinion.
2. Be really mindful of hair products you use. Avoid commercial products like the plague! For the longest time I thought I was safe using natural, organic hair care brands found at Whole Foods. What I found is that even the ones that had the least amount of chemicals are deceptive and toxic, and are gradually weakening the hair and scalp.
In light of this, the best options I have found are:
• The “No-Poo Alternative”, a.k.a Baking Soda to wash / Apple Cider Vinegar to condition. This is what my male friend has been using and his hair stopped shedding like it used to.
• Morrocco Method Products. This is what I’ve been using for the last 5 months and recommend over Baking Soda and ACV, specially for long hair. I have researched hair care for so long and this truly the most natural, 100% chemical free, raw vegan hair care line you can find. Anthony Morocco is a hair shaman and his story is truly amazing. You can find the link to their website (the only place they sell their products) on my blog’s homepage sidebar.
• Dr. Bronners Castile Liquid Soaps. I haven’t tried this personally, but some people swear by it – particularly Dr. Bronner’s Peppermint Castile Soap in its liquid form.
3. Detox, Detox, Detox! One can be consuming the best possible foods and using the best hair care products, but if one is not able to absorb the nutrients and eliminate properly, then all these efforts are of no use and a waste of your hard earned money. Your body is set up to function effectively when all of its channels of elimination are open. I highly recommend colonics, coffee enemas (2nd option after colonics because they only clean the colon) and liver flushes. I personally find that colon hydrotherapy is the best way to clean the colon and intestines. When these channels are clean, every single body function will work much more efficiently. One great benefit for hair loss issues is that intestinal flora will be restored, and this not only helps your digestive system and detox process, but it will also help your body produce its own b12 (again, important for hair health). For colon hydrotherapy, I highly recommend the Open System, rather than Closed for colon hydrotherapy, it’s much easier and surprisingly comfortable.
Does liver flushing solve hair loss problems?
In general, you are toast without a healthy liver. It is our largest internal organ and a vital detoxification system in the body. Unfortunately, damaging the liver is much easier than people think– 75% of North Americans have compromised livers. Your liver does many things: it produces bile to aid digestion, it processes nutrients, filters blood, and breaks down potentially toxic substances into harmless ones that your body can use or excrete.
Here three quotes from Andreas Moritz, a detoxification expert that specializes in liver cleanses / flushes:
“If you are referring to Liver Flushes and colon cleansing, yes, they help prevent waste and toxins entering the hair follicles, and they also improve circulation to and lymph drainage from the head area, all important factors for proper hair growth.”
“Hair health reflects how well the intestines function. When digestion of food and proper elimination of waste improve, hair growth improves as well, along with other areas of the body such as the skin.”
“When people go off a non-nutritious diet and live a more healthy lifestyle, the body goes from the mode of accumulating toxins and waste to the mode of eliminating toxins and waste. As the body is trying to rid itself of the toxins, the pathways of elimination can easily get clogged up. If protein foods such as meat, fish, cheese, etc. were part of the diet, the body may also throw out a lot of the excessive proteins stored in the blood vessel walls. Hair is basically a protein waste product of the body, and so are the nails. If too much of all of this travels to the hair follicles, they may suffocate and the hair falls out. When making such changes in your life, make sure to keep the colon, kidneys and liver bile ducts as clean as possible, in order to prevent the body from using other routes of elimination such as the skin and hair.
In addition, when detoxifying strongly (versus accumulating toxins) the body has to give up more minerals than is usual, especially sulphur, the primary mineral for detoxification. This can affect hair health. Many plant foods, especially green leafy vegetables contain sulfur and are very helpful. Also broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, legumes and sunflower seeds contain sulphur.
If not enough, MSM is a great good source of it. There are studies to show signifant improvement in hair growth and nails among people using MSM, in fact, in 80% of the subjects compared with the placebo group. When starting on MSM, though it is important to start slowly at a the lowest dosage and then gradually build up every few days to 3,000-5,000 milligrams ,otherwise there will be unpleasant side-effects (not that MSM has anything in it to harm the body, but making adjustments too fast can upset the body). Follow directions on product bottles.”
I hope this post has been helpful in clarifying your concerns about the health of your hair.
Thank you for reading! This article was written by Diana Paez, a living foods devotee, natural hygienist, and raw chef in the making. If you liked this post, and want to show your appreciation please like, share or comment below. I’d love to hear from you! I am always open to any questions, suggestions, or comments. You are more than welcome to share the information in this article in your own blog or page, all I ask is that you link back to this post. Love, Peace and Health to you, friends. ❤
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3 Responses to “Does a Vegan Diet Cause Hair Loss and Balding?”
Ah, the title “Real Hairloss Solutions” comes off as marketing spam in a Retweet. Just mentioning since post titles are important for that reason. Still, very interesting!
Thanks for pointing that out Paul! I changed the title. Hopefully that helps. 🙂
No problem, Diana. Your site is kicking- really interesting vantage on familiar fabrics, as if a new loom has spun itself from the base threads themselves. Cool stuff. Just one fellow vegan (though, admittedly, not raw foodist) looking out for another.