Hair Problems, from Weight Loss?
Hair loss aka alopecia can be experienced by both males and females, even more so as they get older. But can losing weight also be a reason your hair starts to thin? For one to understand the link between hair loss and losing weight, it would be beneficial to understand what causes your hair to thin.
Common Hair Loss Causes
According to Dermatologists, there are quite a few more common reasons that one may experience the loss of hair. However, they do draw quite a clear line between hair loss and losing hair. They say that losing hair is quite normal, everyday one can lose about 50 to 100 hairs. Hair loss, on the other hand, occurs when abnormal thinning or patches of less hair begins to appear on your head.
Why does hair loss happen? You may ask, well, there are a number of common reasons.
Male-pattern baldness is probably a phrase you’ve heard, but, did you know, women can also experience this? Female-pattern baldness is something that can run in families, although, for women, it is usually experienced around the crown area and on top of the head. It’s more likely to experience female-pattern baldness if there has been a history of it in your family.
Based on studies conducted by the NIH (National Institutes of Health), hormone level changes can also attribute to hair loss. Changes in your androgen levels can likely cause the hair on your head to thin and your facial hair to feel more coarse. You may also notice changes during menopause, roughly 3 out of 4 women experience some form of postmenopausal hair loss.
A lack of nutrition
A lack of iron can also be a cause of hair losses, if you’re a vegetarian, have heavier than normal periods or have a history of Anemia, you may experience hair loss due to a deficiency in iron. Iron supplements to reverse the condition, however, no real evidence exists to support the effectiveness of said supplements for hair loss.
A lack of protein in one’s diet, as well as very-low-calorie diets, may also lead to hair loss, based on the fact they don’t offer nearly enough nutrition for your body, as well as your hair follicles, to behave normally.
Experts say that it is not uncommon for one to experience hair loss when you are also experiencing unusual levels of stress or anxiety. Unintentional weight loss may also occur in times of stress.
Hyperthyroidism (having an overactive thyroid), can also be a cause of hair loss, In fact, thyroid patients can experience hair loss, routine tests can be run to establish if your thyroid gland is functioning normally.
Weight loss, alone, isn’t a cause for hair loss, that doesn’t mean you won’t experience hair loss when you do lose weight though. A change in your diet can be taxing on your body and can lead to nutritional deficiencies that cause hair loss. Quite a few women can experience weight gain as they get older or in their menopausal period and may go on a diet as a result, and with such a combination, thinning of the hair may occur.
What to Do
If you notice unusual hair loss patterns, pay your doctor a visit. Your healthcare provider can tell you if a related medical condition can be the possible cause of changes to your hair. If not, they may refer you to a dietitian or a health specialist if nutrition problems or stress happens to be the cause.
You may also be referred to a dermatologist, who can run additional tests to find out what may be causing you to lose hair and what can be done to treat it.
There are medications that can be used to treat hair loss during weight loss. Your dermatologist may be able to determine which one is right for you. Lasers and hair transplants are also avenues that can be explored, in extreme cases, however, they don’t always work and are not for everyone. One can work with their healthcare provider to see what treatments are more suitable for them if you experience hair loss during weight loss.