There are various reasons why a diet change could cause your hair to thin out or even fall out. When it comes to hair growth, much of the process of how fast it grows and how healthy it is, comes from the nutrients your body is receiving. If your body does not get the nutrients it needs, it is not possible for your hair to grow as well. By that same reasoning, if you change your diet significantly – especially drastically – it may make it very difficult for you to have healthy hair.
The keto diet is one of those diets that causes a drastic change. For that reason, it is important to correlate the change in your hair growth and your diet. Here are a few reasons why the two are linked.
You Are Getting Fewer Calories
One of the reasons many people lose hair when they start the keto diet is because of the significant change in the calories you take in. Though keto is not necessarily a calorie restriction diet, it is one that creates a natural drop in the number of calories a person consumes. As a result of this big drop, the body goes into somewhat of a shock stage. All types of non-important functions – such as hair growth – are paused so the body can funnel those calories it receives goes to the places where it is needed.
This often occurs as a result of dropping the carbs. In keto, people stop consuming carbohydrates in a goal to encourage the body to burn stored body fat. However, most people do not replace the calories they take in from the carbs they were eating with enough to compensate for it. This creates the weight loss that occurs, but it also limits the body’s available calories for things like hair growth.
You Are Not Getting the Right Nutrients
Another way to see these changes is to look at the vitamins and nutrients you are taking in. Many people who start keto will focus on a low carb diet that reduces the amount of fruits and vegetables they consume. They focus on high fat and high protein. While that may help to encourage weight loss, it can translate into health problems down the road, including a lack of nutrients that your body needs for hair growth.
Keep in mind that keto is not meant to restrict access to nutrients, especially those found in vegetables. However, many people choose to limit the vegetables they take in because they have a higher fiber count, making it easier to drop weight by eliminating those carbohydrates as well. If you are having hair loss, it probably means you are not getting enough potassium, Vitamin K, magnesium, and iron in your diet. You may also want to balance your electrolytes, which are also impacted by keto. When you stop eating carbs, your electrolyte balance changes, leading to deficiencies in key nutrients like magnesium, potassium, and iodine.
The Stress Of It
Most people will not like to hear that keto causes stress, but it can. For many, this stress comes in the form of not knowing what to eat and worrying about eating the wrong thing. For others, the stress comes from not having access to the foods their body naturally wants to consume. Further, the simple shock on the body is a form of stress itself. These stresses can cause a number of complications for your body – including the inability to grow hair properly.
When your body is under stress, it does not work in the same way. It turns off nonessential tasks – such as hair growth – so it can focus on others. Because the stress of a drastic diet change like this can be so taxing on the body and your natural hormone levels, it is likely that it can cause hair loss in itself.
If you are having hair loss or just noticing your hair does not seem as healthy as it used to, that may mean now is the time to make some changes. That does not mean giving up keto, but better balancing your nutrient level and your stress levels to help your body to adjust. To learn more about promoting healthy hair growth, contact the team at Unique Hair Concepts for a complimentary and private consultation.