Keto and Hair Loss. Does Keto Diet Cause Hair Loss?

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Hair loss is a common occurrence with low carb keto dieters mainly due to the lack of protein and severe calorie restriction.

Luckily, like all the other side effects of keto, this too is a temporary and short-lived side effect that will go away.

And the good news is, after a few months your hair follicles will begin to regrow just as thick as before.

In this article we will discuss the reasons for hair loss on keto diet and how you can prevent it.

There’s no doubt that a keto diet can be an effective weight loss strategy. But its restrictive nature can sometimes lead to hair loss.

If you’re not following keto in a careful way, it’s quite possible that you might miss out on important nutrients which are essential for healthy hair.

How does Keto cause Hair loss?

#1. You may not be eating adequate protein.

To keep your body in ketosis, you must limit your protein intake and consume mostly fats.

But, it’s possible that being so focused on fat in the keto diet, you’re not getting adequate protein.

90 percent of your hair follicles are in the growth phase, so they require adequate protein, vitamins, and minerals to maintain a healthy head of hair.

Without enough of these nutrients, including protein, the skin will not have the necessary building blocks for healthy hair growth.

#2. You may be eating too few calories

During low calorie intakes, your body spends less energy on non-vital systems such as hair growth.

Many people who are new to the ketogenic diet don’t replace the calories they would usually get from carbohydrates with healthy fats and protein. 

Also, because of the high fat intake, people generally are not as hungry and end up cutting calories.

This leads to a drastic calorie deficit and any low calorie diets can impact hair health.

#3. You might be missing out in key vitamins and minerals

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By limiting your intake of carbohydrates, including some higher carb fruits and vegetables, you may be reducing the variety of nutrients your body typically needs for healthy hair. 

This could cause you to lose more hair than normal, or for your hair growth to slow down.

#4. Your body may be under stress.

Stress is one of the main culprits behind hair loss, and when your body undergoes major dietary transitions, stress is at an all-time high.

The stress of both losing weight quickly and slashing protein intake can contribute to  temporary hair loss.

it’s important to keep stress to a minimum in every other area of your life during the beginning stages of your keto journey.

Luckily, it’s not difficult to prevent keto-induced hair loss if you’re intentional about your nutrient intake from the beginning.

Tips To Avoid Hair Loss on Keto

Tip #1. Take multivitamins.

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To help prevent hair loss, we recommend taking a multivitamin to cover any potential vitamin deficiencies.

Tip #2. Get an adequate amount of protein

Get the protein you need from high-quality sources, such as eggs, poultry and red meat.

But if you’re on the keto diet and vegan or vegetarian, try to include a good amount of plant based protein sources in your eating plan. 

You can consider food sources such as seitan, soybean products like tofu, edamame, and tempeh, nuts and nut butters, chia seeds or green peas.

Tip #3. Get adequate Biotin

Biotin deficiency is strongly associated with a keto diet. Because many foods rich in biotin, such as fruit and legumes, are usually avoided or consumed only in small portions on a keto diet.

You can consume foods that are good sources of biotin and are also keto-friendly such as egg yolks, nuts, including almonds, walnuts, and peanuts, mushrooms or dairy products.

You can even take Biotin supplements.

#4. Include Bone broth in your diet

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Bone broth and the ketogenic diet are extremely complementary. Bone broth enhances hair health thanks to its collagen content and its positive effects on the gut.

Collagen is the most abundant protein in your body and it’s essential for skin strength and elasticity, hair growth and muscle growth. Bone broth also helps in absorption of nutrients needed for healthier hair.

#5. Have foods rich in Zinc

Several studies have shown that zinc deficiencies can lead to hypothyroidism and extreme hair loss.

Try including Zinc rich keto-friendly foods in your diet, such as, Grass-fed beef, Cacao powder, Pumpkin seeds, Cashews, Mushrooms and Chicken.

#6. Have more Coconut oil

Coconut oil may not directly improve growth, but it can help prevent hair loss. Regular application and consumption of coconut oil can make your hair softer and moisturized.

Additionally, coconut oil is loaded with essential nutrients and antioxidants like vitamin K, vitamin E and iron.

Wherever you are in your keto journey, always remember that keto induced hair loss is only a temporary setback.

It usually happens three to six months after any new diet and only a small percentage of your hair will fall out.

The truth is, any major nutritional changes will cause additional stress on your body, which could trigger temporary hair loss. 

Once your metabolism gets used to your new, healthier way of eating, your hair will go back to normal.

If you continue to experience hair loss on a keto diet after following these recommendations, seek medical advice from your healthcare provider.

Pay attention to factors like calorie deficits, nutrient deficiencies and stress before blaming the ketogenic diet.

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