Hair – if you are a mammal, you have it and you may be interested in nutritional ways to keep it healthy and looking good. Think about your pets and livestock. You can really tell when they are in good shape by looking at their coat. A good shiny silky coat on an animal reflects good internal health. The same is true in humans.
Let’s think about animal care for hair. When one of my pets has a rough coat, the first thing I do is worm them. Typically that fixes the problem. If not, I add a trace mineral supplement and some omega 3 oils to their diet (my pets stay on these.)
For animals, the issues tend to be relatively simple because they usually eat diets that are good for them. For humans the issues tend to be more complex because there are so many foods we can eat that can really upset our metabolism over the long run.
The simple things to do to improve the look of your hair are to fix digestion and add trace minerals and omega 3 oils. By fixing digestion, I mean to make sure that you are actually able to assimilate the nutrients in your food and in any supplements you may be taking. This typically means adding a digestive enzyme and sometimes doing a whole body cleanse and a parasite cleanse. It does not mean taking anything that blocks stomach acid. Stomach acid is necessary for health and for assimilation essential nutrients such as those that help make healthy hair.
Another issue with hair is acidity. If the pH of the body is too acid, hair will fall out. The Atkins diet is a great example of an acid diet. I have met many who had hair loss on the Atkins diet. You can get the pH of your body more balanced by eating more vegetables and cutting out the really acid forming foods in your diet. The most acid forming foods are the artificial sweeteners, sugar, sodas and coffee. You can also balance your pH by taking coral calcium.
The hardest issues to deal with on hair are hormonal. Hypothyroidism is a common cause of hair loss, particularly in women. The most prevalent reason for hypothyroidism is heavy metal toxicity. There are good natural supplements that help the body detoxify heavy metals and there are good supplements that help nourish and balance the thyroid gland.
For men, the hormonal issues tend to be a renegade form of testosterone which can be managed with supplements like chrysin and beta-sitosterol. However, if the loss is due to genetic male pattern baldness, I find that you can slow it down, but it is really hard to stop.
Other products that I have seen help with hair include Ho Shu Wu, a Chinese herb whose name translates to something like “full head of shiny black hair”. Ho Shu Wu is also known as Fo Ti and is found in the Shen Min products that many people love for hair growth. Horsetail is another popular herb for hair growth. It contains silica, a trace mineral that is an essential building block for hair, bones and fingernails. I have also seen great results with noni and super green food supplements like chlorella and blue-green algae.
Margaret Durst owns The Green House, a vitamin, herb and health food store in Mason, Texas. www.naturalcowgirl.wordpress.com