We offer our important list of symptoms so you can learn how to spot protein-related hair loss early. The rising popularity of meat-free diets has made it a challenge for many to get enough protein in their diet, with a direct effect on the quality and health of their hair.
Protein-Related Hair Loss
According to Harvard Health, we need around 0.8g of protein a day for every kilo of bodyweight. For a 50-year-old woman, weighing in at 10 stone, this equates to a little over 50g. It is not a huge amount, but eat any less for a prolonged period and there can be repercussions.
A range of issues can be associated with a lack of protein. A general rise in the risk of infections is a great example of a symptom that on its own is extremely difficult to spot. Even if it comes accompanied by a loss of muscle mass and a rise in the risk of fractures. Even if these symptoms are identified as due to a lack of protein, the condition is well advanced and serious by this stage.
Our hair and nails are made of a protein, which means they are often the earliest indicator. Unlike everything else on the list our hair, skin, and nails offer visual clues.
How To Spot Protein Related Hair Loss
There are a number of clues to be on the lookout for, particularly important if you have recently moved to a vegetarian diet.
While we all naturally shed hair every day, any noticeable increase is to be noted. Hair follicles that have gone into their rest phase will typically shed from the root. If you are noticing hairs that are broken elsewhere that is a sure sign of a lack of hair health.
Hair With Increased Porosity
If you notice that your hair has become more absorbent, especially of atmospheric humidity, this can be a sign. A companion feature is often hair that is more frizzy, due to the speed with which it will also lose moisture.
Hair Lacking Elasticity
When wet our hair should stretch and spring back to its starting position. If your hair is tending to stay in its pulled out state it is another sign of poor hair health. All the truer if the hair is also breaking.
Hair Loss For Women
The Western diet was once notoriously high in protein. As many opt towards healthier food choices that protein, with meat removed from the diet, has become far harder to access. Supplements are available though there are plenty of protein-rich vegetarian food options.
The importance of protein in our diet cannot be underestimated. It should be something that is given much thought when planning a meat-free diet. 50 to 70g of protein is not much, and easy to get with a small portion of meat. Without meat, it requires some thinking about. Not everyone wants to chomp their way through half a kilo of oats every day, or the same weight in lentils. Nuts, for those who can deal with their high-fat content, are also a fantastic source at around 20% protein. You can find more advice on healthy eating at this NHS webpage
Keep your protein levels up and your hair will thank you. But spot a protein deficiency by seeing it in your hair at its early stages, and you will be thanking your hair.
We would like to offer you the opportunity to discuss your hair loss situation with a friendly, globally recognized, expert. Ranbir is a qualified trichologist and a full member of The Institute of Trichologists. A committed hair professional, Ranbir has years of experience and a well-earned reputation for thought-leadership and innovation in the industry. If you would like to discuss your hair loss situation with an expert, sympathetic and experienced ear, please use the contact form to get in touch.
You can read more about Ranbir here.