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Fight Baldness Without Drugs

By    |   Friday, 27 June 2014 02:59 PM

Hair loss can be devastating to both men and women, and it's more common than you might think.
According to the American Academy of Dermatology, half of men are balding by age 50.
And although few women talk about it openly because of embarrassment or stigma, some 40 percent of them will suffer hair loss in their lifetime.
"Men talk about it more and we're more aware of it in men, but women suffer silently," says nationally renowned anti-aging expert Erika Schwartz, M.D. 
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Genes play a big role, and experts agree there's not much you can do to prevent genetic balding, although some medications can ease hair loss.
The most popular are minoxidil (Rogaine) and finasteride (Propecia), both of which have limited effectiveness and can have serious side effects.
But there are numerous causes of hair loss that you can control, says Dr. Schwartz, author of Healthy Balance, a women's health newsletter. Something as simple as changing grooming practices, can lead to hair regrowth.
Dying hair, styling it too often (especially tight braids and hair weaves), and using chemical relaxers and other harsh treatments can cause hair to fall out.
"Even just pulling your hair too tight in a ponytail can cause hair loss," Dr. Schwartz tells Newsmax Health. The American Academy of Dermatology suggests regularly using a conditioner, and limiting the use of hair dryers and curling irons to once a week.
Common medications can also cause hair loss. "We know that people who undergo chemotherapy and radiation for cancer lose their hair, but nobody talks about how antibiotics can cause hair loss," says Dr. Schwartz.
Other medications linked to baldness include blood thinners, beta-blocker and calcium channel-blocker blood pressure drugs, antidepressants, and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS) taken for pain, including ibuprofen.
Stress often leads to hair loss. "Taking care of yourself will help your hair grow back," Dr. Schwartz says. That includes a healthy diet, getting eight hours of sleep, and regular exercise.
Thyroid disorders also cause loss of hair. "Most people who have thyroid problems will lose hair," says Dr. Schwartz. Hair that thins, becomes rough, and breaks easily is a common sign of thyroid malfunction.
Dr. Schwartz recommends these essential nutrients for hair growth:
Iron: Dermatologists at Cleveland Clinic have linked iron deficiency, with or without anemia, with hair loss, and have found that treating iron deficiency can maximize patients' ability to regrow hair. Iron-rich foods include red meat, dark leafy greens, whole grains, eggs, and oysters.
Magnesium: Too little magnesium, in relation to calcium levels, can cause hair loss. To correct it, reduce your sugar intake and eat spinach, pumpkin seeds, mackerel, and lentils.
Selenium: Selenium stimulates the growth of hair follicles. A 2010 study found that low selenium levels cause abnormalities in hair follicles and hair loss. Selenium is found in Brazil nuts, tuna, and sardines.
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Biotin: Several B vitamins are important for hair growth, especially biotin, says Dr. Schwartz. Some experts believe biotin can regrow hair and even reverse premature graying. Swiss chard, brewer's yeast, walnuts, eggs, and sardines contain generous amounts of biotin.
"Even massive hair loss isn't necessarily permanent," says Dr. Schwartz. "Once you find and correct the problem, you should start to get your hair back in three to six months."
The full version of this article appeared in Health Radar newsletter. To read more, click here.

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Hair loss strikes about half of men by age 50 and 40 percent of women. Some medications can ease hair loss, which is often genetic, but drugs aren't the only option. There are numerous causes of hair loss that you can control, says renowned anti-aging expert Dr. Erika Schwartz.
baldness, without, drugs
Friday, 27 June 2014 02:59 PM
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