PDA

View Full Version : Possible diet/greasy scalp connection



MsBubbles
March 24th, 2009, 11:33 AM
Tentative first impressions: whenever I get my act together and cut out excessive wheat and refined sugar from my diet for even a few days, my scalp is remarkably less greasy on the 2nd day after a wash! :D :happydance:

This may be a seborrhoeic dermatitis- related thing, because my scalp itches less too.

It may simply be due to me eating more fruits and vegetables. I don't know.

I wasn't sure if this was really happening back 2 months ago when I actually managed to avoid eating wheat and sugar for about 4 days. I noticed my hair was less greasy on my 2nd day. But then I fell back off that wagon again and my usual scalp-grease levels continued. Now, fingers crossed, I've managed to stick to fruit, veg and lean protein for a whole week - gasp! - and yesterday I noticed my hair was still blonde in my front hairline instead of dark with grease as it normally would be.

I used to be an every day washer because my fine, thin, blonde hair looks lank and wet after 24 hours of washing. I started going every other day about 6 months ago and just resigned myself to having a flat, miniscule, wet-looking head on the 2nd day, wearing it up to minimize how yucky it felt. It did NOT improve the longer I 'stretched' my washes, and actually made it worse.

I am really excited to think I may be one of the lucky ones who can go longer if I just keep sugar and wheat to a few times a week instead of a few times a meal!!

My ends get very dry very fast when I wash every day so I'd love to be able to go 2-3 days at some point.

I have been tested for celiac's disease due to past hives breakouts and intestinal issues, but it always came back negative. I am, however, allergic to other weird things, such as rice. So this may all be related.

Hurray4Henna
March 24th, 2009, 12:00 PM
This is interesting. I find when I eat a lot of wheat/gluten/unsoaked nuts, I break out and get really oily skin/hair. I thought it was in my head, but perhaps not, hmmmm. Also, my flakies and itchies are much better. I think it digestive related.

chrissy-b
March 24th, 2009, 02:50 PM
It makes sense. I know when I'm eating well, my skin is less greasy, less prone to breakouts, and generally brighter and healthier looking. Makes sense that it would have the same effect on your scalp.

Katze
March 25th, 2009, 05:31 AM
MsBubbles, I have had almost the same exact experience, except I had hair loss, too.

To make a long story short my chronic depression hit a new low after 9/11. I was suicidal, and sought help, but psychiatry, group therapy, etc was more of a band-aid over a flesh wound. On the advice of a friend I started getting acupuncture, and the acupuncturist started treating my depression, weight gain, hair loss, scalp and skin problems, all together as symptoms of suspected borderline low thyroid. Although I didn't test for low thyroid, she had had it herself, and felt I had many symptoms, so in addition to Chinese herbs and acupuncture she also had me cut out dairy, wheat, and sugar for three months. This was one of the hardest things I ever did but my hair started coming back in and my depression started going away.

Slowly but surely, by cutting out sugar, alcohol, and caffeine, and cutting back on wheat and dairy, in addition to the TCM treatments, I cured my depression, lost weight, and healed my scalp. My hair is much less greasy, and everything else is much better. I literally transformed my life this way.

Fast forward to LHC. I'm still eating fairly well, can occasionally enjoy sugar but not every day, take fish oil, eat more fresh fruits and veggies, and my hair and scalp have never been healthier. I drink (when not pregnant) almost no alcohol, which is also a sugar, and avoid too much caffeine. I can, and do, eat wheat and dairy, though I should probably cut down on wheat, it's hard here in 'bread land.'

I realize this is an extreme case. Not everyone has the same systemic imbalance I had, not all greasy or itchy scalps are connected with diet (but I suspect many are!), and not everyone is able to heal their lives as I did. BUT there is definitely a connection between skin and hair health and diet.

In your case, MsBubbles, it could very well be allergies, or candida, or just some kind of sensitivity. If you have access to a holistic health care practicioner, see if they are willing to work with you on finding this out, and supporting you in your quest to eat better. I bet fish oil would help you too - there are just so many factors to consider, which is why I suggest asking a professional to help guide you.

good luck and hope you keep figuring out things that make your scalp happier! And sorry for the long rambling post. :D

MsBubbles
March 25th, 2009, 09:38 AM
Candida - I totally forgot about that. Thanks Katze! Thanks for the other replies too. It might seem obvious to most people, especially if I said 'potato chips and donuts make my hair greasy', but in reality it's something as lame as 'cocoa crunchies make my hair greasy'! Or key lime pie yogurt, or something.

And ditto the depression thing...since I've managed to eat fruit, veg and lean protein 90% of the time, my mood has been calm. Which is rare.

I haven't had any alcohol in 10 years, save one dose of Nyquil which totally knocked me out for hours, so that's not a problem, but I haven't yet managed to slay the caffeine monster...

It'd be great to be even more gentle on my hair by getting an extra no-wash day out of it.

Darkhorse1
March 25th, 2009, 10:27 AM
I've found my hormones can make my skin/hair excessively greasy--been that way since I hit puberty. But, if I eat excessive refined sugars/junk food and highly greasy/oily foods, like potato chips, my skin will break out and my hair gets really greasy.

Treating your body right will almost guarentee healthy hair :) Whenever I start drinking more milk, my hair looks amazing.

SmellyJelly
March 25th, 2009, 12:52 PM
My hair gets greasy like yours, I think Im gonna try to cut out wheat and sugars as you have done and see if it makes a difference. Also have you tried massaging diluted lemon essential oil into your scalp? I tried Dabur Vatika Enriched Coconut Oil which contained lemon oil which reduces sebum flow and I found that helped my hair to become less greasy. Unfortunatly I have run out of that product but Im getting lemon oil in a couple of days :)

Thanks for the interesting thread, Sophie x

Katze
March 25th, 2009, 12:58 PM
My hair gets greasy like yours, I think Im gonna try to cut out wheat and sugars as you have done and see if it makes a difference. Also have you tried massaging diluted lemon essential oil into your scalp? I tried Dabur Vatika Enriched Coconut Oil which contained lemon oil which reduces sebum flow and I found that helped my hair to become less greasy. Unfortunatly I have run out of that product but Im getting lemon oil in a couple of days :)

Thanks for the interesting thread, Sophie x

Just a word on lemon oil: if you are at all sun sensitive, or burn easily, citrus oils are counterindicated as they increase sun sensitivity. So use with caution, and on cloudy days! the last time I did anything with citrus on a sunny day I ended up with terrible burns on my forehead. If you are looking for something acidic to cut grease, vinegar rinses are a safer bet...

just my two cents.

SmellyJelly
March 25th, 2009, 01:04 PM
Just a word on lemon oil: if you are at all sun sensitive, or burn easily, citrus oils are counterindicated as they increase sun sensitivity. So use with caution, and on cloudy days! the last time I did anything with citrus on a sunny day I ended up with terrible burns on my forehead. If you are looking for something acidic to cut grease, vinegar rinses are a safer bet...

just my two cents.

Thanks for that :) usually I apply it a few hours before I wash my hair so even if I washed it out would it still leave me sensitive to the sun?

Katze
March 25th, 2009, 01:34 PM
Thanks for that :) usually I apply it a few hours before I wash my hair so even if I washed it out would it still leave me sensitive to the sun?

From what I recall, it increases your body's sensitivity, but my course in aromatherapy was a LONG time ago so take this with a grain of salt. I've used citrus EOs in burners, and currently have a massage oil with citrus in it, but it is very grey where I live and I would be careful to not ever put anything containing citrus EOs (this includes Bergamot) on my skin if I were to be going out into the sun.

I find it a bit worrisome that citrus essential oils are added to hair oil, but, as a very pale northern type with some skin damage from the sun anyway, I am extra careful about these things.

MsBubbles
March 25th, 2009, 01:53 PM
My hair gets greasy like yours, I think Im gonna try to cut out wheat and sugars as you have done and see if it makes a difference. Also have you tried massaging diluted lemon essential oil into your scalp?
Thanks for the interesting thread, Sophie x

Glad you like the thread topic! I haven't cut out wheat and refined sugar 100%...but I have stopped having either one at every meal. I'm not very good at banning myself completely from various foods. I get a bit obsessive, then rebel against myself and end up in eating-disorder-land. I'm not avoiding 'sugars', because I still get plenty of fruit sugar in the fresh and frozen fruit I eat. It's the refined stuff I have to try to avoid.

Also...try for yourself what works for your body. I really think my scalp would be fine if I ate potato chips and hamburgers - it's the wheat and sugar that upset my system, apparently. See if anything is making your scalp worse...it may be different for you.

UP Lisa
August 22nd, 2013, 10:34 AM
I believe I inherited my oily scalp from my Dad. His scalp was still oily at 87. Therefore I doubt a change in diet would help me, but I could be wrong.........

spidermom
August 22nd, 2013, 11:28 AM
I haven't tied it with anything specifically dietary, but I have noticed that sometimes my sebum seems to be more liquid. It spreads faster and is absorbed faster. I'll have oily hair, brush, and it's almost like washing my hair. Other times my sebum is more tacky. It doesn't spread and isn't absorbed. I believe it's probably diet related, but I haven't narrowed it down to anything, not even when I was keeping a food diary.

Emichiee
August 22nd, 2013, 11:29 AM
I believe I inherited my oily scalp from my Dad. His scalp was still oily at 87. Therefore I doubt a change in diet would help me, but I could be wrong.........

You don't inherit a trait like that straight. It is a tendency to develop certain traits and with certain actions you can switch these tendencies (even genes) on and off. So diet might help.

On another note, if certain foods make your hair and skin oily or make you break out, worsen problems like dermatitis and eczema - they are not good for you. That is your body telling you to stop.

Many people can not handle modern refined foods well. I can't, even though I don't have any clinical intolerances. I will get oily hair, oily skin, less good skin overall...a bit bumpy, I get body aches and general inflammation. I used to have diseases like Hashimoto's that I don't have not eating wheat among other things.

Leeloo
August 22nd, 2013, 12:24 PM
A healthy diet is directly reflected in our skin. Itís just so hard to maintain a healthy diet. Mmmmm pizza

Melika
August 22nd, 2013, 12:49 PM
The food I eat is very related to my skin. I've been WO and my scalp was not scaly until my cramps sent me to therapy: peanut M&Ms. Now there are little scales and my face and scalp are much greasier. And all I did was add sugar to my diet. Granted, a lot of sugar, for two days... but still that's all I changed. Now I have to go through recovery for my body.

Ah, we're wheat/grain free in this house since DH is sensitive.

ravenheather
August 23rd, 2013, 08:26 AM
I try to not eat wheat and sugar. For more info on how these affect us try reading Wheat Belly or The Gut and Psychology Syndrome. These books have changed how I view nutrition and health completely. You can also just google gaps diet.