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produce hair cell protein. “Its levels are
rarely tested in a routine blood test,
but if you are experiencing hair loss or
thinning, you should ask your doctor
to check this,” he says, and even more
so than with thyroid readings, low to
normal ferritin levels can adversely
affect your hair. He advises that there
are many good supplements you
can take to increase ferritin levels,
but always consult with your doctor
before choosing one. “Rest assured
though – as your ferritin levels reach
a healthy figure, your hair will benefit
immensely,” he says. “You can also help
increase ferritin levels by eating red
meat, such as steak and liver, twice a
week as part of a well-balanced diet.”
Diffuse hair loss in females is not
normal, asserts Ryan and in fact, it can
be treated very successfully providing
the cause has been diagnosed correctly.
“During a consultation, a full medical
history is taken wherein diet/nutrition,
life style, and stress levels are all
explored,” he says which then usually
results in blood tests being obtained to
establish the correct levels for optimal
hair growth. These levels are very
different than the levels for health.
Once the hair fall is diagnosed, Ryan
points out that he uses a combination
of scalp therapies and nutritional
supplementation to improve the hair
fall. At home, treatment is usually
prescribed as daily regime.
Prevention is Better than the
We have all heard the saying “You are
what you eat” and according to Ryan,
this actually has great relevance to
hair as it is a barometer of our health.
“The reality is that those who try
different diets and cut out major food
groups are depriving their bodies,”
he says, as we obtain 50 percent of
our energy for our bodies through
carbohydrates, 15 percent via proteins
and 35 percent through good fats. We
all need energy to synthesise our body’s
skin cells which includes making new
hair cells, he says, as this provides
normal functioning for our body’s
development and renewal. “Lacking in
an essential food type will, in time, take
its toll on the body,” he says.
Your Hair and Your Food
Breakfast is King:
The most important meal for your hair
is breakfast, urges Ryan. “Breakfast
is the most important meal for your
hair because the energy levels of your
hair follicles are at their lowest first
thing in the morning, and they need
a boost,” he says. “Dinner, however, is
the least important meal for your hair
so it is here that you could indulge or
Breakfast Ideas
Choice or combination
of the following:
• Eggs
• A serving of turkey ham
• Kippers or smoked salmon (or any
other fish or meat)
180g (6oz) of low fat cottage cheese
* Fruits * Bread
* Cereals * Jam or honey
* Yoghurt * Juices
* Tea or coffee
Next is Lunch:
The second most important meal for
protein, tells Ryan is lunch. Some ideal
lunch suggestions are as follows:
• Minimum of 120g (4.5oz) of any
meat, fish, eggs, poultry or 180g
(6oz) of low fat cottage cheese
• Any vegetables, or salads
• Dessert in the form of fruit is
In-Between meals:
Eat between meals if you don’t eat for
more than four hours. After this time,
the energy to your hair follicles gets
depleted. If you feel a little lethargic
around late afternoon – so do your
hair follicles, but you just don’t feel
Energy Boosting Snacks:
• Fruit – fresh or dried
• Raw vegetables
• Slice of bread or whole meal biscuit
Daily must do:
• Drink 1.5 to 2 liters of water
• Not too much salt or high fat
content foods
• No black tea as there is evidence
that drinking tea without milk can
decrease iron storage.
Credit: The Dubai Hair Doctor;
July/Aug 2014