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Can Losing Weight Too Fast Cause Hair Loss?

Posted Jun 06 2012 7:00am

losing hair

losing hair Most people take good care of their hair and are often dismayed when it begins to thin. The average person normally loses between 50 and 100 hairs every day, which is typically not noticeable. However, when hair loss is extreme it can be disconcerting, especially when hair begins to look thin and sparse.

Causes of Hair Loss There are several causes of hair loss in adults who are generally healthy. In women, the most common causes of rapid hair loss are hormonal changes during or after pregnancy, menopause or when oral contraceptives such as birth control pills are discontinued.  A variety of medical conditions can also cause hair to thin. Thyroid disorders, infections of the scalp and diseases such as lupus can all be the cause of hair loss. Undergoing radiation or chemotherapy for cancer can also cause hair to fall out in large quantities. In years past, healthy adults who began losing their hair struggled to find an answer. However, studies have now shown that hair loss can be caused when the body undergoes a physical shock. Extreme dieting or losing weight rapidly can cause hair to fall out, as well as other traumatic events such as the death of a loved one.

Hair Loss as a Result of Dieting Those who are dieting should be careful to consume plenty of foods that are rich in nutrients, as poor nutrition can cause hair to fall out. Dieters should strive to eat plenty of lean protein, which should include some red meat as it is rich in iron. Eating cereal that is iron fortified will also keep hair well nourished. People who are dieting should always avoid unhealthy crash diets, as they can cause physical shock and hair loss. Many people who suffer from anorexia or bulimia lose their hair from a lack of nutrients.

What Can I Do? People who are losing their hair should consult a doctor for a full evaluation to accurately determine the cause of hair loss. Most doctors will run a battery of tests including blood tests to screen for diseases such as lupus, diabetes or thyroid disorders that can cause hair to fall out. Doctors may also take a small sample from the scalp, to determine if any underlying skin diseases exist. When hair loss is due to poor nutrition, most doctors will recommend a consultation with a registered dietician, which can help patients develop healthy eating habits. If an underlying medical condition is the cause of hair loss, doctors will prescribe medication to treat the underlying cause which should promote the growth of healthy hair.

There are a variety of products designed to grow healthy hair and reduce thinning. Minoxidil is available over-the-counter to treat hair loss. This product is rubbed into the scalp twice each day to help hair grow. When hair loss is due to weight loss, it usually returns to its normal growth pattern once the body is receiving adequate nutrients.

Author Bio:

Author Bio: Jenny Ellison is a hair growth consultant at Lucinda Ellery , a premier hair loss consulting agency specializing in thinning hair remedies and treatment.


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