What causes hair loss?
Although hair loss can be attributed to genetics (thanks mom and dad) there are other causes as well. Some are preventable ones and include nutritional deficiency, infection, emotional stress, chemical hair products, and even prescription drugs . Addressing causes which are preventable while focusing on ways to stimulate growth should help and keep you ahead of others in your hair-loss-prevention quest.
Eat plenty of fish
Fish is very healthy and is stacked with protein and minerals. More important as it relates to hair loss, fish is also an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids and vitamin D. Both nutrients have been linked to preventing hair loss in chemotherapy patients. I am not aware of any studies on healthy men but both nutrients offer various other health benefits so there should be nothing stopping you from including more fish in your diet.
Maintain proper Iron Levels
Iron-deficiency anemia, which is usually more common in women as opposed to men is a well-known cause of unexpected hair loss. Though the loss may be so slight that you barely notice it first, long term iron deficiency can cause extensive hair loss. Consider adding some iron-rich foods to your diet like pumpkin seeds and tofu for those who are vegetarians and red meats,eggs for those who are not.
Crucial for hair growth are B vitamins biotin, folate, B2, and B12. Biotin for example is so important that its sometimes prescribed alongside medical treatments for hair loss prevention (like Rogaine). If you think you’re lacking vitamin B or any nutrient for that matter (like iron), definitely speak to your doctor before you get yourself tested or go down the supplements route. An even simpler solution is to structure your diet accordingly, although getting enough biotin may present to be a challenge.
Manage your stress
At any given time, roughly 85% of the hair on your head is in its growing phase while the other 15% is in its final “death” stages. Sometimes stressful events can actually produce a "shock to the system" further deteriorating the natural cycle and decreasing the growth balance causing as much as 30%–40% of the hairs to start to die. Although the events that cause these are usually related to some major life crisis or a severe illness, it’s possible that prolonged stress could have a similar, though lesser, effect. With that being said, finding ways to manage stress is key to preventing hair loss.
Other easy-to-follow hair loss prevention tips...
Carefully read the labels of your prescription drugs
Most of us know that chemotherapy can increase hair loss, but did you know that there are plenty of prescription drugs out there that can cause hair loss as well? Blood thinners like warfarin, several arthritic medications and psychiatric drugs like lithium are just a few examples of prescription drugs that can stimulate hair loss. Next time you acquire prescription medication, please take a look at the label and think hard about what you are putting in your body. I covered the legal meds but what about the illegal ones? Well, drugs like steroids can do wonders for your muscles but cause bold spots visible from miles away.
Keep up on personal hygiene
Though it’s not exactly a direct cause of hair loss, A general lack of personal hygiene is not really a direct cause of hair loss but it can lead to fungal scalp infections like tinea capitis that result in patchy hair loss. Maintaining a clean scalp through regular shampooing will help prevent any fungal infections and help prevent baldness in the process. With that being said, certainly don’t overdo it. Too much shampooing can cause damage to the sebaceous glands of the scalp that are responsible for making sebum, which naturally moisturizes the hair and skin.
Don't hesitate to see your doctor
When it comes to preventing hair loss, seeing a doctor can sometimes be the optimal solution. Your local dermatologist see's balding on a regular basis so don’t be embarrassed. Doctors don't always have all the answers, but they will be able to provide some help which include prescribing certain meds,testing for nutritional deficiencies, and further recommending the proper supplements if one is identified.
Regular exercise is one of the most important tips pertaining to hair loss prevention. Exercise should help to relieve stress and usually improves circulation to the skin. Sweat which is a byproduct of exercise helps the skin by pumping out impurities from the surface. Though there is very limited info on exercise and hair loss prevention, the worst case scenario may be that you will one of the many bold men out there with a great body... Not so bad if you think about it..
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