Natural regular shedding of hair is natural as hair grows in cycles. Generally, humans shed between 50 and 100 single hairs per day. Hair shedding is part of a natural balance, some hairs fall out, new ones grow in. However, hair loss in women can be defined as when a woman experiences heavy loss of hair. When the balance is interrupted, as when hair falls out and less hair grows in hair loss happens. Hair loss is different from normal hair shedding. The medical term for hair loss is “alopecia.”
Light, fine, short hair is called vellus hair. Terminal, androgenic hair is thicker, darker and longer.
Many people think that hair loss only affects men. However, it is estimated that more than 50% of women will experience noticeable hair loss in their lifetimes. The good news is there are ways to support it through lifestyle, diet and supplementation. A nutritional therapy appointment will help to ascertain where the diet and supplement intake can be improved. We can also suggest testing options and provide recommendations based on your test results.
Women older than 40.
Women who have had chemotherapy and those who have been affected by other medications.
Women who use harsh chemicals on their hair.
Hairstyle: Your style of hair can cause hair loss when your hair is arranged in ways that pull on your roots, like tight ponytails.
Vitamin deficiencies or insufficiencies
Dieting (rapid weight loss)/ Restrictive diets.
Extreme physical stress or shock to your body causes temporary hair loss/ Extreme emotional stress: mental illness, the death of a loved one, etc. There’s around a three-month delay between when a stressful event happens and when you might see hair loss, so you may not pinpoint the trigger right away.
An abnormal thyroid (hypothyroidism)
Medications and supplements: including some blood pressure medicines and gout medicines
Hormone changes can be caused by pregnancy, menopause or birth control pills.
This is characterised by thinning of hair along the top of the scalp.
Alopecia areata is an autoimmune skin disease that causes patchy hair loss on your head and possibly other places on your body. The effects are not usually permanent.
Hair loss in menopause:
During and after menopause, hair might become finer (thinner) because hair follicles shrink. Hair grows more slowly and falls out more easily in these cases. During menopause, oestrogen and progesterone levels fall, meaning that the effects of the androgens, male hormones, are increased.
What are the signs of hair loss in women?
A Summary of conditions that may lead to hair loss includes:
Massage - Massaging the scalp, which can be used in conjunction with hair oils and masks, stimulates the scalp and may improve hair thickness[i].
Rosemary - Rosemary is a common essential oil that people use to promote hair growth and reduce hair loss[ii]. Mix a few drops of rosemary oil into a carrier oil, like argan oil or jojoba oil, and massage it into your hair and scalp before rinsing. You can do this a few times per week. Try: Rosemary - Organic (10ml) Jojoba Oil - Organic (100ml)
Biotin - Biotin, also known as vitamin B7, stimulates keratin production in hair and can increase the rate of follicle growth. Try Biotin.
Zinc - Zinc plays an important role in hair tissue growth and repair. It also helps keep the oil glands around the follicles working properly. Try Nano zinc (1 ltr)
Silica - Silica doesn't promote hair growth, but it does strengthen hair and prevent thinning. It does this by delivering essential nutrients to your hair follicles. Try Silica Complex
B Vitamins - B vitamins do help in hair growth by encouraging healthy cell rejuvenation through abundant red blood cells which naturally support your hair follicles.Try High Two B-Complex
Our Favourites for Healthy Hair:
DUTCH Test: For finding hormonal patterns and links to female health concerns, the Complete Hormone Panel - DUTCH Test, is a comprehensive, accurate and non-invasive test. The majority of women are often not aware that they are suffering from a hormonal imbalance, presenting with symptoms such as abnormal menstruation (heavy/painful periods), PMS, headaches, decreased sex drive, bloating, mood swings, fatigue, anxiety & depression, breast tenderness, endometriosis, fibroids, and hormonal weight gain. The DUTCH test tests reproductive and adrenal hormones as well as melatonin and oxidative stress.
The DUTCH test stands for Dried Urine Test for Comprehensive Hormones and involves a collection of a small amount of urine on filtered paper four times a day. The DUTCH TEST measures hormone metabolites from the dried urine samples. The hormones measured in the test include:
[i] Koyama T, Kobayashi K, Hama T, Murakami K, Ogawa R. Standardized Scalp Massage Results in Increased Hair Thickness by Inducing Stretching Forces to Dermal Papilla Cells in the Subcutaneous Tissue. Eplasty. 2016 Jan 25;16:e8. P]
[ii] Panahi Y, Taghizadeh M, Marzony ET, Sahebkar A. Rosemary oil vs minoxidil 2% for the treatment of androgenetic alopecia: a randomized comparative trial. Skinmed. 2015 Jan-Feb;13(1):15-21.
[iii] Saxena, R., Mittal, P., Clavaud, C. et al. Longitudinal study of the scalp microbiome suggests coconut oil to enrich healthy scalp commensals. Sci Rep 11, 7220 (2021).
Please note that the information contained within this website does not and should not replace medical advice, and is not intended to treat or diagnose. We always recommend you consult with your doctor. Our Nutritional Therapy team is highly trained and we offer one to one Nutritional Therapy Consultations, which are designed to be complementary to any medical treatment from a functional medicine approach, as well as offering a preventative & optimal health focus.