I went to my favorite makeup store Sephora and took note of several women buying expensive hair serums and shampoos to deal with hair loss. I didn’t want to be off-putting and approach them with better suggestions, so I’m writing today’s article instead. Save your money! Good grief! Most of those ingredients listed on the label, some of which are completely made up words, do not help to regrow your hair, although they might make it shinier and softer. I’m all about “the fix” not the fancy label!
Correcting a hormonal imbalance in your body makes regrowing hair easy. Restoring a nutrient that is insufficient due to the ‘drug mugging’ effect also works. There are dozens of reasons for hair loss, this is why Minoxidil (for as good as it is) doesn’t work for every individual. The root cause of hair loss varies from person to person. Let’s go over some possibilities. You may assume that lab work is expensive, but if it teases out the underlying cause, it’s still cheaper than useless products.
First, the hormonal imbalances associated with hair loss:
Elevated estrogen or Estrogen Dominance.
This is sometimes referred to as “testosterone deficiency” in the scientific literature. When this imbalance is corrected, hair grows back; the goal is more testosterone, less estrogen.
Hypothyroidism or Hashimoto’s.
This is a thyroid hormone imbalance and it’s a biggie. When you’re ‘thyroid sick’ instead of ‘thyroid healthy’ the outer edges of your eyebrows begin to thin or fall out. You may completely lose your eyebrows and eyelashes. It becomes brittle and dry. Restoring thyroid hormone is the fix; learn how in my “Thyroid Healthy” book.
Iron is measured usually as “ferritin” and when it is deficient, your hair falls out faster. Low iron goes hand in hand with thyroid disease and the ulcer bug Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori).
This stands for Sex Hormone Binding Globulin and low levels lead to hair loss. FYI, green tea raises SHBG.
Now the medications that cause hair loss:
It causes hair to fall out. It usually grows back after your treatment series. The best way to offset chemo is to take supplements and eat foods that support mitochondrial health.
Carbamazepine is one example. Antibiotics crush biotin levels too. When biotin is tanked, your hair can fall out. Restoring probiotics and biotin can improve hair regrowth.
Acid blockers for Reflux and Heartburn.
What do gut drugs have to do with your head?! I know this one is a real head-scratcher! But this category of medications is a strong drug mugger of zinc, and zinc is needed for healthy hair growth. Zinc is also needed for Superoxide Dismutase, a natural enzyme in your body that captures microscopic fireballs (free radicals) and escorts them out. Corticosteroids like prednisone also zap zinc.
Estrogen or Menopausal drugs.
These drugs are used for birth control and hormone replacement. The reason is “estrogen dominance,” but for the final nail in the coffin, these drugs deplete almost all your B vitamins! Taking a B complex can certainly offset the drug-induced nutrient depletion, but it only does so much. Improving estrogen metabolism and breakdown (or discontinuing the estrogen-derived medicine) is your fastest path to luscious locks.
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Suzy Cohen, has been a licensed pharmacist for over 30 years and believes the best approach to chronic illness is a combination of natural medicine and conventional. She founded her own dietary supplement company specializing in custom-formulas, some of which have patents. With a special focus on functional medicine, thyroid health and drug nutrient depletion, Suzy is the author of several related books including Thyroid Healthy, Drug Muggers, Diabetes Without Drugs, and a nationally syndicated column.