Does weight loss cause hair loss?
By Prof. Dr. Soner Tatlidede 2020-11-01
Does weight loss cause hair loss? Sometimes we need to lose weight quickly to improve our figure before going on holidays, for a wedding, and so on. To get this, we usually resort to so-called "miracle diets" that make us temporary lose weight, but that at the same time imply very drastic changes and a big stress load for our body.
These drastic changes normally carry out heavy consequences for our body, including hair loss, which partly explains why female hair transplant demand is increasing. If you are one of those people concerned about weight loss and hair loss, since you are doing diet and see how your hair is deteriorating and falling out... you must read this article.
What causes rapid weight loss and hair loss?
Hair loss because of weight loss is more common than we think. There are lots of wrongly called "miracle" diets that can make us lose several kilos in a few weeks... and then regain them even quicker, and the reason is clear: to lose weight permanently, it is necessary to change our lifestyle habits. Practicing poor diets that manage to lose weight in a record time ends up being disastrous for our body, and thus causes hair loss.
But the damage is not just for hair; when our body has to support big weight and metabolic changes in such a short time, our muscle tissues and heart can also be damaged, as well as the metabolic system of our body. Another added problem is when, at the same time we practice these aggressive and insufficient diets, we combine them with intense physical exercise to accelerate weight loss, thus increasing stress for our body and hair loss due to telogen effluvium.
Even if we are not doing any diet, when physical exercise is carried out, hair loss occurs to a greater or lesser degree, especially when those exercises are aimed at increasing muscle mass. In fact, besides the relation between hair loss and weight loss, exercises such as weight lifting cause hair loss, because our body use part of the proteins that normally would be used for hair regeneration to create muscles and supply them with more energy.
Nutrition experts confirm that even if we intake extra protein supplements, id does not prevent our body from optimising its "resources" and give priority to the increased protein needs of our muscles. Sweating is another important factor that can accelerate hair loss, since when sweating our scalp secretes sebum, which suffocates follicles and causes hair to fall out. Lastly, in the same way that losing weight affects our hair, there is also a link between weight gain and hair loss since it causes metabolic changes and stress in our body.
How long does hair fall out after weight loss?
Although it is true that doing diet may do cause hair loss, especially in the early stages, there are remedies to avoid losing hair. Additionally, a diet under supervision of a nutritionist is a safe way of losing weight, does not have to be deficient in nutrients, and does not have necessarily to cause hair loss after weight loss.
If we do not consult an expert in nutrition, doing diet by ourselves means that hair loss may occur because of the lack of nutrients and trace elements such as iron or zinc, as long as we do not supply our body with enough of them; also, another cause of hair loss if there is a weight loss is the aforementioned telogen effluvium, which is a type of alopecia that our body generates due to stress or shocks, injuries, diseases, etc.
Telogen effluvium in people doing "miracle diets" or losing weight too quickly is quite common, and causes hair to fall out abundantly during 2-3 months, due to hair own growth cycles. But don't worry: telogen effluvium is temporary, and hair will grow back again, recovering its usual appearance after 6 months.
To avoid further hair loss, for those doing diet is important to avoid stress to not to trigger telogen effluvium, and to apply treatments and cares capable of strengthening hair and stop hair loss, such as conditioners, massages, and products containing green tea, which inhibits the production of DHT, the main cause of male pattern baldness.
How do you stop hair loss when dieting?
As we have seen, there is a clear relation between sudden weight loss and hair loss. Whatever the type of diet you are doing is, it is important to reduce weight through a balanced diet and changing our eating and lifestyle habits, in order to avoid any damage to our health - and to prevent hair loss - and making weight loss permanent. Doing exercise is healthy, but always in a moderate way.
Another key is to avoid subjecting our hair to aggressive hairdressing treatments and hairstyles that may damage follicles, especially in the initial phases of the diet, when our body is still adapting to dietary changes and our hair is more susceptible to fall out due to the reasons we already have explained. We can also help taking vitamins or specific supplements to strengthen hair, such as biotin.
Being aware of the relation between weight loss and hair loss is important because, if we do not take action in time, damages to our hair can be permanent. Therefore, always consult an expert to do diet or to take care of your hair: at Clinicana we are experts in all hair treatments, and the best hair transplant clinic in Turkey. Ask for a free consultation now, no obligations!