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Kapri
February 1st, 2012, 07:05 AM
2 years ago, my hairdresser commented that my hair had doubled in density. Was it because it because I was especially happy? she asked. No, in fact, I was going through a very stressful work redundancy. But at the same time, I had started cooking with coconut oil and following a diet by Barry Sears called Eat Fat get Thin (can't remember precise title).

I am not convinced that the diet helped me get thin. I am into moderate low carbing. But my o' my..my hair looked so much better than it had in years even with sophisticated hair drops from the trichologist etc I still use the drops, take iron to keep my ferritin levels up and still cook with coconut oil but have cut back on the fat in my diet. I am wondering about exploring that approach again.

It may be that because some hair issues are insulin balance related, that I had leveled out my blood sugar, improved hormone balance and that was why my hair doubled in thickness.

Who knows?

Anyone have any stories about how dietary changes affected their hair?:)

Amber_Maiden
February 1st, 2012, 07:24 AM
Hmmm... being vegan hasn't affected my hair much. I do know that when I was a raw vegan it barely grew and broke a lot!

Kapri
February 1st, 2012, 07:29 AM
Amber Maiden

Now that you are not a raw vegan what extra nutritional elements are there in your diet that will have improved things hair wise?

Thanks!

Kapru

Manny1826
February 1st, 2012, 07:39 AM
Amber maiden-- I would like to know what kapri is asking as well! very interesting!

CashmereHair
February 1st, 2012, 10:54 AM
to much sugar make me shed :-(

Annalouise
February 1st, 2012, 11:01 AM
My hair is growing back after a major shed, with a vegan diet and vitamins. It has gone from a i to a ii. :) Which I'm very happy about.

PixieKitten
February 1st, 2012, 11:04 AM
I'm on a primal diet, whit is basically lots of fat, low carbs, no grains and processed foods etc and my hair's gone even thicker that usual, and grew from a short pixie cut right down to my shoulders in juts under a year! It's got so much more shine than usual, and I have less breakage and shedding, but that could be from no longer blowfrying an straightening it!
When I was vegetarian a few years before, my hair was limp, dull and lifeless. Come to think of it, so was the rest of me. I was pale and had no energy and I wasn't happy at all. Pass me the steak!! =D

princessp
February 1st, 2012, 11:24 AM
I've been a vegetarian for 25 years and I don't think anyone would describe my hair as thin (or slow growing, limp, dull etc.) You don't need meat to grow healthy hair. My take on this subject is everyone is different and you need to find what works for you by experimenting.

ETA: Kapri, coconut oil is just awesome stuff all around: "Coconut oil is also good for the immune system. It strengthens the immune system as it contains antimicrobial lipids, lauric acid, capric acid and caprylic acid which have antifungal, antibacterial and antiviral properties. The human body converts lauric acid into monolaurin which is claimed to help in dealing with viruses and bacteria causing diseases such as herpes, influenza, cytomegalovirus, and even HIV. It helps in fighting harmful bacteria such as listeria monocytogenes and heliobacter pylori, and harmful protozoa such as giardia lamblia."

Kapri
February 1st, 2012, 12:23 PM
I'm on a primal diet, whit is basically lots of fat, low carbs, no grains and processed foods etc and my hair's gone even thicker that usual, and grew from a short pixie cut right down to my shoulders in juts under a year! It's got so much more shine than usual, and I have less breakage and shedding, but that could be from no longer blowfrying an straightening it!
When I was vegetarian a few years before, my hair was limp, dull and lifeless. Come to think of it, so was the rest of me. I was pale and had no energy and I wasn't happy at all. Pass me the steak!! =D

Pixiekitten. I ordered Lauren Corden's cook book and I have the very book you are using. He and his wife look A-may-zING!!! If I have a body like hers in a few years time. Glad it's good for your hair. That's kind of the direction I want to go in too!;)

Kapri
February 1st, 2012, 12:25 PM
I've been a vegetarian for 25 years and I don't think anyone would describe my hair as thin (or slow growing, limp, dull etc.) You don't need meat to grow healthy hair. My take on this subject is everyone is different and you need to find what works for you by experimenting.

ETA: Kapri, coconut oil is just awesome stuff all around: "Coconut oil is also good for the immune system. It strengthens the immune system as it contains antimicrobial lipids, lauric acid, capric acid and caprylic acid which have antifungal, antibacterial and antiviral properties. The human body converts lauric acid into monolaurin which is claimed to help in dealing with viruses and bacteria causing diseases such as herpes, influenza, cytomegalovirus, and even HIV. It helps in fighting harmful bacteria such as listeria monocytogenes and heliobacter pylori, and harmful protozoa such as giardia lamblia."

It's interesting you should write that. My immune system which used to be poor following ME in my late twenties has never been so solid. I'm sure that CO is the reason it has nothing to do with lack of stress!!! Thank you !

turtlelover
February 1st, 2012, 12:57 PM
The lower the amount of refined carbs and processed food in my diet, the better my hair looks. Certain supplements have also helped my general health as well as my hair.

88Marisa
February 1st, 2012, 02:03 PM
I haven't noticed any really serious changes in my hair from diet alone and I've been omni, vegetarian, vegan, raw (high-fat) vegan, raw (high-carb) vegan. I have found that my skin looks best when I'm eating raw, especially when I eat low fat (ie, a lot of fruit).

However, I have been on a Water-only routine for my hair for almost 8 months now, and have seen tremendous improvements in my hair on this routine. Very few splits (even in the color-damaged parts), much shinier, less shed, much less frizz, etc. If I eat higher fat, my hair looks lanky and not as nice, so I try to stick to low fat. There is a woman I know who started experiencing really fast growth of her hair after about 2 years on a low-fat raw vegan diet (like 2+ inches a month) and I'd be very pleased if that happened to me as well. I don't know that I've been doing it long enough to make a huge difference in growth rate yet though.

jacqueline101
February 1st, 2012, 02:10 PM
I don't know about vegan diets but starvation diets will take a major toll on your body and so does the ephedra dieting pills I know I did it for over a year and my health is not like it was.

Lala3488
February 1st, 2012, 03:39 PM
i noticed a link in my diet and hair. I was going through a really stressful period in my life, lost 30 lbs in a few months and lost alot of my hair. Now that I am healthy, i barely notice shedding in the shower like it was doing when i was barely eating from the stress..

Orangerthanred
February 1st, 2012, 03:58 PM
Fresh fish is like a hair miracle to me.

Moonlake
February 1st, 2012, 06:28 PM
**********

the.fee.fairy
February 2nd, 2012, 05:03 AM
Since moving to China and having a Chinese diet high in oils, fresh vegetables and rice, i've noticed that my nails grow long and strong.

At first, my hair shed like crazy, but afterwards it started growing back.

I think the high oil diet really helps. Mostly, it's vegetable oil, so not too unhealthy.

Sheryl
February 2nd, 2012, 06:25 AM
I would love to do a lot more with coconut oil, dirctly on my hair and cooking but it's so expensive here. The cheapest I can find it is $10/ lb!

I am much healthier and so is my hair on a low carb, little sugar, higher natural fat diet. The type of fat is important for health. I think they are all the same as far as weight loss goes, however. Pure, unadulterated natural vegetable oils are very good for you, especially olive.

Jessibear2854
February 2nd, 2012, 09:54 AM
I'm on a primal diet, whit is basically lots of fat, low carbs, no grains and processed foods etc and my hair's gone even thicker that usual, and grew from a short pixie cut right down to my shoulders in juts under a year! It's got so much more shine than usual, and I have less breakage and shedding, but that could be from no longer blowfrying an straightening it!
When I was vegetarian a few years before, my hair was limp, dull and lifeless. Come to think of it, so was the rest of me. I was pale and had no energy and I wasn't happy at all. Pass me the steak!! =D

Yay for primal! I'm primal too and have noticed my hair growth sped up since I changed my diet :) I also think my skin looks as lot better with less processed carbs/sugar.

princessp
February 2nd, 2012, 11:51 AM
It's interesting you should write that. My immune system which used to be poor following ME in my late twenties has never been so solid. I'm sure that CO is the reason it has nothing to do with lack of stress!!! Thank you !

Yeah it's fantastic stuff! This thread is reminding me that I need to pick up another jar for cooking. I've been using mine on my hair and armpits :p (baking soda + coconut oil is the best deodorant I've ever used) so it's not really in great shape for consumption. I usually give a little (like 1/2 tsp) to my dogs too, they also love it (and it's good for them). :)

long.again
February 2nd, 2012, 06:30 PM
I'm a recovering anorexic and I know my hair (and nails) have definitely had their ups and downs over the years. I notice having normal amounts of protein is super important. I have far, far less shedding and nail breakage if I focus on protein. Of course, proper amounts of anything will always be a struggle, but I try.

Kapri
February 3rd, 2012, 09:49 AM
This is all really interesting stuff. Thank you all for contributing. I see now there's another thread about protein diet and hair which I'm going to check out too!

Long.Again ..your hair is beautiful, I love the colour and the style.

luxepiggy
February 3rd, 2012, 05:33 PM
For my hair, overall thickness seems to correlate with total caloric intake, while the composition of the diet affects the strength/texture of the individual strands. It usually takes about a year for major changes in my diet to show up in my hair.

My hair's condition was definitely at its peak when I was consuming ~2000 calories/day. At the time, I was washing and blow drying with high heat every single day, yet my TBL hair was still shiny and thick with no splits. It grew faster too: ~7" yearly.

When I cut my intake to ~1200 calories/day and simultaneously limited dietary fats, and my hair was not at all pleased. It got a LOT thinner due to increased shedding, and I started seeing some breakage, which had never been an issue before.

For the past couple of years, I've continued to consume ~1200 calories/day, but I've completely overhauled the composition of my diet. I've discovered my local farmer's market, so I've replaced processed foods with a lot more fresh produce. I also stopped limiting my fat intake. My hair is really starting to show improvement - it has recovered a great deal of its previous shine and strength.

Kapri
February 5th, 2012, 05:59 AM
Luxe Piggy,

VERY interesting indeed. It was the high fat (eggs, organic chicken etc) intake in my own diet two years ago that caused my hair density to double.

So you are higher fat but keeping the calories down. That must mean you are relatively low grain/starch.

Thank you !

Kapri
February 5th, 2012, 06:15 AM
The connection between hair growth and fat may be to do with the way the body appropriates certain vitamins. If nutrients are fat soluble, the body benefits more if there is adequate fat content in the diet. Of course we are not talking de-natured, trans fats nor rancid cooking oils ..fats need to be understood and respected.

Kapri
February 5th, 2012, 06:26 AM
also... if fat, protein, fresh stuff and starchy carbs are in the right ratio, a woman will be more likely to have a balanced blood sugar, healthy insulin balance and good hormonal balance in general ... this is also key for great hair.

A low fat approach which is too starchy/complext carb oriented ain't great for healthy hair. If my reading is correct. I know this is disputed!

EtherealDoll
February 5th, 2012, 06:32 AM
Three years ago, when I was eating 500 calories a day, my hair thinned out quite a lot. I was limiting my fat intake back then as well, so no wonder I was shedding like crazy. Later, after a few month of eating 1200-1300 calories a day, the shedding stopped. And when I stopped limiting fat intake, my hair started growing faster and looked much better. But even now it's still not as thick as it used to be.

Kapri
February 5th, 2012, 06:47 AM
Ethereal Doll,

Gosh that was a very low cal diet. I can see that it would take a while for your hair to be happy again. But you will. Be encouraged. The body looks after the hair last according to Philip Kingsley the well-known trichologist (where i go from time to time) so if your body is getting what it needs the hair will benefit next.

My hair was super thin, dropping out and thinning on the scalp actually in my late twenties due to high calorie but overly sugary intake in conjunction with polycystic ovaries etc I really do have to watch the sugar/starch etc and eat healthily. I also need to make sure I have fun and treat myself to naughty fun food too from time to time! I am still learning to listen to my body. I have discovered that very rigid approaches only cause me to get bored and rebel. I have to do the healthy thing ( I am very careful with carbs, try to have protein with all my meals and avoid sugary stuff and too many grains, but loads of green veggies and salad) but sometimes break out and go and by a lovely bar of good quality milk chocolate!

Kapri
February 5th, 2012, 07:04 AM
http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/showthread.php?t=16951&page=1799

Moor tu lyfe has some interesting things to say about diet and hair colour and density on the Salt and Pepper thread both on this page and the following page if you read down the discussion.

Annalouise
February 5th, 2012, 09:51 AM
Luxepiggy, my husband says the same thing to me about fats being good for hair.
Would you tell me what you mean by fats? What fats specifically?

bunzfan
February 5th, 2012, 10:15 AM
I have noticed when ever i eat more protein my hair really grew! i'm back on more protein as i'm trying to pile on a few pounds and my hair seems to be growing a lot so i believe it does work if their is protein or fats lacking in your diet, great for your bust to:wink:

TheMechaGinger
February 8th, 2012, 06:03 PM
Going low carb/high fat&protein saved my hair too. I was a vegetarian for about 2 1/2 years and I was sick all the time, my hair was coming out in handfuls and I always had bags under my eyes. Now my diet is about 85-90% protein and fat (and has been for about two months now) and I can't tell for certain about quality yet but my hair is growing in faster. I did a full henna dec 19 and by jan 19 I had a full inch of strawberry blonde roots sticking out from the rest of my dark red hair. Now it's closer to an inch and a half and it's really shiny. I've also noticed a lot of frizzies on the top of my head, the kind indicative of new growth. I'm stoked :D

FrenchTwist
February 8th, 2012, 07:44 PM
This is a really interesting thread. I have been eating about 5-7 almonds daily or every other day and think my hair has been growing faster since I started that - nothing else has really changed in my diet.

leslissocool
February 8th, 2012, 07:56 PM
I'm a low carb/ high protein person. I lost weight (over 70 lb), and my hair is the thickest it's ever been!

I think eating fats has actually helped my hair. I eat things like coconut oil, peanut butter, almond butter and whole milk. My hair is really shiny too. I eat 70g of protein a day, about 1700+ calories.

ETA: I'm also with the people who don't eat many grains (none, except for popcorn), and absolutely no processed food.

ludwig20
February 8th, 2012, 08:58 PM
I'm not sure what's helped my hair the most because I've modified my diet a lot. No more processed foods. Dark leafy greens for lunch and dinner. Carrot juice. No more caffeine and sugary drinks. More seafood and nuts, too. And a lot of water.

PixxieStix
February 8th, 2012, 09:56 PM
I do not like to rely on supplements, (but realize that the soil much of our food is grown in is deficient right now, so I do take a few), and instead try to eat very healthy. Lots of protein and healthy fats (organic eggs and chicken, raw almonds, sunflower seeds, walnuts, pine nuts, coconut oil, etc.), with plenty of fresh vegetables and fruit. I drink organic juice, tea, and lots of water. I haven't noticed any difference really with diet and hair growth, but then again, I never made any sort of correlation until I started hanging out around here, and by then I'd been eating healthy for quite a while. I still get pretty average growth, ~ 0.5 inch a month, but that's okay with me. I'm not sure what my calorie intake is, but according to the My Pyramid website a few months back when I had to track my diet for a school project in nutrition class it told me if I cut my intake back by 500 calories a day I could see some significant weight loss. Gee, at 115 pounds, I'm sure that's exactly what I need! :p I need to remember about that peanut butter though, that's some good stuff to eat too!

Kapri
February 9th, 2012, 06:08 AM
I have noticed when ever i eat more protein my hair really grew! i'm back on more protein as i'm trying to pile on a few pounds and my hair seems to be growing a lot so i believe it does work if their is protein or fats lacking in your diet, great for your bust to:wink:

Good news re hair. Although I don't want to put on pounds but I'm pleased it is having this effect. :)

Kapri
February 9th, 2012, 06:09 AM
Going low carb/high fat&protein saved my hair too. I was a vegetarian for about 2 1/2 years and I was sick all the time, my hair was coming out in handfuls and I always had bags under my eyes. Now my diet is about 85-90% protein and fat (and has been for about two months now) and I can't tell for certain about quality yet but my hair is growing in faster. I did a full henna dec 19 and by jan 19 I had a full inch of strawberry blonde roots sticking out from the rest of my dark red hair. Now it's closer to an inch and a half and it's really shiny. I've also noticed a lot of frizzies on the top of my head, the kind indicative of new growth. I'm stoked :D

ooh this is so encouraging. It's great too that it helped with bags under the eyes..I wonder what caused that?

Kapri
February 9th, 2012, 06:11 AM
I'm a low carb/ high protein person. I lost weight (over 70 lb), and my hair is the thickest it's ever been!

I think eating fats has actually helped my hair. I eat things like coconut oil, peanut butter, almond butter and whole milk. My hair is really shiny too. I eat 70g of protein a day, about 1700+ calories.

ETA: I'm also with the people who don't eat many grains (none, except for popcorn), and absolutely no processed food.

Lesliesocool, I'd be interested in knowing which approach you took. I would really like to lose weight as well as keep my hair strong and growing. Fantastic that you lost 70 pounds as well. Your hair looks molto shiny! Lovely.

Kapri
February 9th, 2012, 06:13 AM
I do not like to rely on supplements, (but realize that the soil much of our food is grown in is deficient right now, so I do take a few), and instead try to eat very healthy. Lots of protein and healthy fats (organic eggs and chicken, raw almonds, sunflower seeds, walnuts, pine nuts, coconut oil, etc.), with plenty of fresh vegetables and fruit. I drink organic juice, tea, and lots of water. I haven't noticed any difference really with diet and hair growth, but then again, I never made any sort of correlation until I started hanging out around here, and by then I'd been eating healthy for quite a while. I still get pretty average growth, ~ 0.5 inch a month, but that's okay with me. I'm not sure what my calorie intake is, but according to the My Pyramid website a few months back when I had to track my diet for a school project in nutrition class it told me if I cut my intake back by 500 calories a day I could see some significant weight loss. Gee, at 115 pounds, I'm sure that's exactly what I need! :p I need to remember about that peanut butter though, that's some good stuff to eat too!

It sounds like you're doing everything right. And a lot of research says that it is the ratio and quality of food that affects calorie usage rather than a straight calories in..energy used ..weight put on ..ratio. I like the sound of your approach too.

Kapri
February 9th, 2012, 09:32 AM
I'm not sure what's helped my hair the most because I've modified my diet a lot. No more processed foods. Dark leafy greens for lunch and dinner. Carrot juice. No more caffeine and sugary drinks. More seafood and nuts, too. And a lot of water.

I've cut down on coffee too...it causes all sorts of blood sugar issues when used too heavily and insulin related imbalances are significant for the hair. WATER...I need to drink more water!

Othala
February 9th, 2012, 01:23 PM
I mainline meat....steak, burgers, ribs, you name it. I used to be a strict vegan. That lasted six years and I had bad skin, anemia and fine, wimpy hair. Now my bloodwork is great, ferritin levels are popping and my hair is strong at the root and thick on the strands.

BlazingHeart
February 9th, 2012, 03:50 PM
For me, the main thing is to make sure I've got enough iron and b-12. I find I do the best with enough red meat, grass-fed beef or lamb being the best. Corn-fed beef is waaaay lower in nutrients and has a lot more of the 'bad' fats.

I know some people can manage this on vegetarian diets, but I am not one of them. I just can't maintain the same health without red meat (which is a shame, because I would like to mostly eliminate eating other mammals). My doctors have actually told me that I shouldn't go without red meat. *shrug* We all have different absorption patterns, when it comes to food, and mine just don't support a vegetarian diet.

Kapri
February 10th, 2012, 04:07 AM
Meat, iron, b12... a trichologist put me on regular iron and b12 when my hair started thinning in my late twenties. He said that the improvement was such that whereas he had been planning to photograph my scalp for a medical lecture (!) ..he could no longer do so after I had taken the supplements for 6 months. You do need to make sure you have blood tests though to check iron levels if you supplement regularly ...

SeaLamb
March 12th, 2012, 07:09 AM
although i didn't go vegan to help my hair and actually became veg to help animals, i noticed that my hair, nails and skin are definitely more healthy now. my hair used to grow sooo slow and now it grows much faster and feels so much healthier, as do my nails. :D

Amber_Maiden
March 12th, 2012, 07:30 AM
Amber Maiden

Now that you are not a raw vegan what extra nutritional elements are there in your diet that will have improved things hair wise?

Thanks!

Kapru


Amber maiden-- I would like to know what kapri is asking as well! very interesting!


Apologies for not getting back quicker!

So the question is what nutritional elements I have now which I didn't as a raw vegan?
Well, for example, I can eat extra nutrition from cooked tomatoes- you don't get the same vitamins from a raw tomato, you get different ones when cooked!
I eat more cooked beans which gives me more iron, protein, etc. I drink soy milk, eat tofu, etc... Which is more protein and iron, as well as calcium.
Grain products which contain folic acid....
TONS of stuff!!!

I should point out I am still on a limited diet, even if I am not longer a raw vegan. I am a gluten-free vegan, and have been for the last 3 years. I was raw vegan for two years before that, and just plain vegan 3 years before that. That's a grand total of 8 years being vegan. I've been vegetarian since I was eight years old, so that's 15 years of no meat!

I definitely haven't noticed thinning- and I have TONS of hair. My nails don't break and grow very long, as well.

I do not take vitamins usually, but am currently taking a prenatal vitamin as I am pregnant, and yes, I am still vegan.