You are what you ‘digest and absorb’. For a lot of us, our digestive system is not operating properly, it’s sluggish, it doesn’t digest fully, and it doesn’t absorb as it should. All of those things negatively impact in the way our hair looks and feels.
You might notice excessive breakage, slow growth, or that your hair is dry and lifeless. Like your skin, your hair reflects what’s happening on the inside. Stress, sleep, medications, nutrient status, and the type of hair products you use can all be impacting your hair.
What to do
Eat the rainbow. High antioxidant intake and a diet high in plant fibre is crucial for establishing good hair growth, because it ensures we are getting a wide variety of nutrients every day.
Eat nourishing omega 3 fatty acids. These good fats are so important for strong and conditioned hair. Fatty fish such as salmon, nuts and seeds such as walnuts, chia seeds, flaxseeds, hemp seeds, as well as healthy oils such as olive oil (unheated) coconut oil, and avocado for strengthening protein and nourishing fat.
Get your nutrient levels tested. Low iron, zinc, and other key nutrients can impact hair growth. Eat a mix of plant and animal sources of iron to help keep iron levels high, and ensure to pair iron-rich foods with vitamin c-rich foods when possible. i.e spirulina (iron) with berries (vitamin c)
Some health conditions can accelerate hair loss or hair breakage. One of the conditions which commonly affects women is an under-performing thyroid. If you are experiencing hair loss as well as symptoms of fatigue, weight gain, hair thinning, dry skin or brain fog it may be worth checking in with your naturopath who can run some tests to see how you’re thyroid is performing.
Lastly, don’t over-wash your hair because it can strip it of its natural oils and result in excessive breakage. Try a beautiful vegan or plant-based hair mask at least once per week (avoid parabens, petrochemicals, sles, als).
Hair deficiency signs
Dry, dull hair – deficiency in essential fatty acids, vitamin A
Hair loss – deficiency in vitamin B12, essential fatty acids, iron, zinc, biotin
Course, brittle hair – deficiency in zinc
Dry, brittle hair – deficiency in iron
Prematurely greying hair – deficiency in copper, biotin, vitamin B12
Yvette is a qualified Melbourne-based Naturopath and Nutritionist, MINDD Practitioner, member of the Naturopaths and Herbalists Association of Australia, and Complementary Medicine Association. Yvette specialises in the treatment of conditions commonly affecting women and children, with a key interest in children’s digestive and neurological conditions, as well as women’s hormonal concerns, digestive issues, fatigue, anxiety, and skin concerns. Yvette consults in South Yarra, Melbourne, as well as Australia-wide via skype/zoom/phone.
The Naturopathic Co. Melbourne Naturopath 2020