Have you ever brushed your hair and noticed strands tangling in the bristles? Or wash out shampoo, only to find a clump of what you washed collected in the shower drain?
Whether due to stress, health problems, lack of nutrition or other factors, hair loss is bound to affect everyone at some point—it’s only natural.3 In fact, according to the American Academy of Dermatology, over the course of a regular hair growth cycle, 50 to 100 hairs are shed daily. This may sound like a lot, but considering this amount is normal provides some comfort. Perhaps our brush and shower drain aren’t as daunting as we make them out to be.
However, adding to the amount of hair we lose naturally, outside factors, such as the keto diet, have been found to exacerbate the issue. Although uncommon, some keto participants have noticed an increase in hair loss. Although this isn’t a permeant issue and can be reversed with proper care, it can affect our confidence and sense of beauty.8,9
Looking deeper into hair loss, it is important to address the root of the problem, starting with the root of your hair.
The structure of hair is made up of two components, the follicle, and the shaft. The follicle is the source of growth and the point where the strand attaches to your skin. The shaft, comprised of an inner and outer layer, is the actual strand we see, style and brush. The keto diet cares for our body, but it does not help keep hair healthy. Therefore, we need to be cognizant of loss and maintenance in order to have strong and beautiful hair.5
Despite how often we may brush or condition, what causes keto hair loss?
Hair loss can be linked to a variety of factors. Some people are genetically predisposed to hair loss while others experience hair loss due to an increase in stress and protein deficiency.
Within the keto context, stress can derive from shifting into a new diet. If you don’t get enough sleep and consume a lot of caffeine in conjunction with greatly reducing carbs, increasing fats and maintaining a moderate amount of protein, this can alter your internal composition. Balance is key. What our bodies are unaccustomed to could unintentionally bring on stress.6
Keto calls for a moderate amount of protein, but those who are new to the diet may struggle with deciding how much to consume. If not enough protein is consumed regularly, the first sign of deficiency is hair loss.7
Here Are Three Helpful Tips And Tricks For Getting Past Keto Hair Loss:
1Keratin- This fibrous protein is responsible for our nails, hair, and epidermis. Its powerful properties allow for healing wounds, retaining hydration and strengthening our skin. Keratin can easily be introduced into our diets and is found in nuts, red meat, and seafood. It can also be consumed in supplement form as a 500mg capsule or powder (great for smoothies). Not only will keratin help restore your hair, but it will also create a beautiful shine, ensure thickness and strengthen the follicle.2
2Sleep- Catching some much-needed z’s does much more than reduce the circles under our eyes. Sleep can greatly impact our health and impact our hair due to the production of human growth hormones (HGH). HGH is created during uninterrupted sleep cycles. Those who are unable to sleep through the night or get enough sleep, may not produce enough HGH, which can lead to thinning hair. Additionally, lack of sleep can lead to stress and also result in hair loss.11
3Protein- Hair is made from protein and requires plenty of it in order to continuously grow and be healthy. 90% of our hair is constantly growing while the remaining 10% is inactive. Hair loss can be seen after 2 to 3 months of inadequate protein intake. Although keto requires a moderate amount of protein, it is important to keep track of exactly how much is being consumed. If not enough protein is introduced to your diet, hair loss may be a side effect. Foods rich in keratin, such as nuts and red meat, are also rich in protein, serving a dual purpose.1,4,10