What Your Hair Says About Your Nutrient Status

I’ve had a lot of women mention during their consults that they are unhappy with their hair. The most common complaints are that:

  • their hair is frizzy
  • their hair is dry
  • or that their hair is thinning.

This is often followed by the question what can I take to make my hair grow thicker, longer, and healthier?.

Nutrients Needed for Good Hair

Our hair requires amino acids from protein, minerals like zinc and silica, and vitamins especially vitamin A and C. It’s also important to include lots of essential fatty acids.   Try to eat raw, healthy plant fats to keep your brain, body, and your hair in top condition. Great sources are nuts and seeds, raw plant oils like: cold pressed olive, hemp and flax oil; avocados, raw coconut shreds, raw coconut butter, and coconut oil.  Non-vegetable sources of essential fatty acids include salmon and tuna.

While supplementing with these nutrients may give a “quick fix” for your hair, it is important find the real problem.   I have found that healthy hair is directly related to your nutritional status.  Frizzy, dry, thinning hair, like skin and nail problems, are a clear sign of nutrient deficiency.  In particular I have found that lack of absorption from prolonged stress means that your hair will start to look dry, break easily and have spilt ends. It’s always important to investigate what this external sign is saying about what is happening inside the body.

Hair, skin, and nails are always considered “secondary” when it comes to nutrient allocation. In times of shortage, or where nutrient absorption is impaired, your body will always delegate nutrients first to the essential organs for living such as the brain, liver, heart and kidneys. Only, if there is surplus, does it go to skin, nails, and hair.

Underlying Causes of Poor Hair

Stress is one common reason that this occurs. If you have been through a prolonged period of stress your body will “rob” these essential nutrients to help produce hormones.  Your body does this to help you get through this “stressful” period. Unfortunately though, this leaves no extra minerals and your hair, skin, and nails are where this will show.

Thinning and drying hair may also be a sign of thyroid dysfunction and you should ask your doctor about comprehensive thyroid function testing. Please note just testing TSH does not provide a comprehensive overview of thyroid function.

In my clinic I utilise the Oligoscan Heavy Metal and Mineral Analsysis to provide real time testing of your mineral levels. Combined with visual signs of deficiency, this test can really help to identify specific deficiencies and allow me to create a personalised treatment program. Mention this article and I’ll take 25% off your Oligoscan Heavy Metal and Mineral Analysis test.