Medically reviewed by Dr. Shunmukha Priya, Ph.D. in Food Science and Nutrition
A healthy woman without any clinical condition will have 80,000 to 120,000 terminal hairs on their scalp. But what if the woman has PCOS? Today we will brief on the PCOS hair loss and certain home remedies that can help you reduce hair fall.
Before we jump onto the causes of hair fall due to PCOS, what is PCOS exactly? PCOS or Polycystic Ovary Syndrome is a hormonal disorder that is common among women of reproductive age. They generally have infrequent periods or prolonged menstrual cycles. And this polycystic ovary syndrome treatable with some natural foods, contact Possible for PCOS Diet.
When a woman is suffering from PCOS, there are a lot of health issues that occur in her; one such being hair fall. Although it is not as severe as other symptoms of PCOS, hair is the most important aspect in a woman’s life, hence it is necessary to protect them.
PCOS And Hair Fall
Hormonal imbalance is one of the common symptoms in a woman with PCOS. This results in a decline in metabolic rate that affects the health and physical appearance of a woman. Here is the diet for PCOS.
Among the many, hair fall is a major one. Usually, this can be due to:
1. Deficiency of essential nutrients: It is important to consume or add healthy and nutrient-dense foods in your diet. All of these essential nutrients serve each of the issues that occur in your body. The deficiency of essential nutrients can result in hair fall as well.
2. Unhealthy food habits: Consuming food made of unhealthy oils and sauces; fried foods; foods rich in bad fat, etc can result in hair fall.
3. Following an unhealthy lifestyle: Unhealthy lifestyle such as partying frequently overnight, regular alcohol consumption or sugary beverages, consumption of junk foods, sleeplessness can affect your health and in turn, effects and harms your hair growth.
4. Stress: Stress is common among adults today and causes many health issues. Stress and anxiety have a far greater effect on your body than anything.
5. Usage of chemicals in the hair: Coloring or bleaching can cause severe problems such as thinning, breakage, dandruff, frizzy, and also hair fall. Usage of curling or straightening iron can also be one of the reasons.
6. Side effects of medications: Most medicines come with side effects and one such side effect is hair fall. Before you take up any medications or supplements be knowledgeable about its side effects and consult a doc.
7. Maintaining poor hair hygiene: Hair hygiene is commonly neglected by all. Irregular washes and brushing; rarely oiling can result in severe damage to hair like hair loss, breakage, and dandruff.
8. Environmental pollution: One of the major reasons, pollution, causes hair fall and also regulates growth sometimes. Not just pollution, exposing your it to the harsh sunlight can also damage it.
During PCOS, the body produces too many androgens resulting in a condition called hyperandrogenism. With this condition, the woman is likely to develop body and facial hair growth and also experiences less growth on the scalp.
Usually, healthy hair growth occurs at a rate of 0.35 mm/day, which is approximately 0.5 in a month or 6 inches in a year. A new hair should start to grow soon after the old one has fallen out. At any given time, 85% of our hair is in a growth phase whilst 15% is in the resting phase.
The problem with PCOS hair loss is that it enters the resting phase but does not re-enter a growth phase, leading to thinning and baldness.
Reasons For Why PCOS Causes Hair Fall
1. High Testosterone Levels
- During PCOS, cysts in the ovaries produce too many androgens (known as hyperandrogenism), which is responsible for blocking the hair follicles thus causing Androgenic alopecia or AGA.
- This results in hair thinning and also becomes shorter in length. Sometimes it can lead to lighter hair color and finally stops producing.
- Testosterone hormones split into many Dihydrotestosterone (DHT) are present in the oil glands of the hair follicle. These DHT circles the receptor sites in the hair follicle resulting in shrinkage and finally killing the follicles.
- Some women have more sensitive receptors or are more efficient in producing DHT and hence they are more susceptible to hair fall.
- The “stress hormone” Cortisol hormone worsens hair loss. It can also increase your risks of more serious health complications like hypertension, increased weight, lowered bone density, weakened immune system, and heart disease.
- Stress also increases the risk of insulin resistance. So, some simple stress buster techniques can relieve your stress temporarily.
- Stress also helps in gaining weight. This can also be one of the reasons for hair loss. This blog post helps you understand how important to know “How to lose weight with PCOS.” Losing weight with PCOS and avoid the risk of losing it.
3. Hormonal Imbalance And Hair Thinning
- Thinning can often happen in the beginning stages of female and male when sensitivity occurs to the normal androgen that circulates around hair follicles.
- This sensitivity causes miniaturization and the change of diameter of the hair follicle. This is caused by the androgen DHT or Dihydrotestosterone.
4. Lack Of Sleep
- Sleep is controlled by two hormones; melatonin and serotonin. A lack of sleep will cause an imbalance in the levels of these two hormones. This will, in turn, imbalance other hormones, including insulin.
- Regular eating will help in keeping your insulin levels normal and absorption of nutrients it requires.
Possible Superfoods To Be Added In Diet
- Premium Foods – Tru Juice, Trugreen, Teatox-D, Trufiber-D
- Drinks – Aloe vera drink, Hibiscus tea, Wow drink, Amla drink, Shake a day
- Snacks – Flax seed ladoo, Seeds cocktail, Almond Coconut Bar
- Breakfast – Quinoa Dal dosa mix, foxtail millet mix, Multigrain premix Atta
- Soups – Moringa Soup, Tomato Moong Soup
Tips To Manage PCOS Hair Loss
Foods that are rich in protein such as whole legumes, egg whites, fishes, lean meats, mushrooms, avocado, sweet potatoes, nuts, etc can promote growth. One of the best-known vitamins for hair growth is Vitamin B12.
2. Sleep And Exercise:
Getting enough sleep is especially important. Depriving in sleep can cause stress and anxiety and in turn, reduces damage. A minimum of 7 to 8 hrs sleep is sufficient. Yoga or Meditation or Exercise in the early morning can keep you away from stress and also helps reduce PCOS hair loss.
3. Reduction in alcohol:
Consumption of alcohol dehydrates your body and hence affects your hair health. Body dehydration makes it dry and brittle and damages it.
4. Regular Hair Wash:
Wash regularly with a mild shampoo. Washing regularly can help cleaning specks of dust, soil, germs and thus helps to avoid dandruff and other related problems.
5. Avoid Hair Color And Bleach:
Coloring or bleaching can damage your hair follicles and thus causing hair loss. Avoid the application of bleaches and hair colors.
6. Oil Massage:
Regular scalp massage can open up the pores which helps better oil absorption. Oil massage promotes hair growth and strengthens roots.
7. Brush Your Hair Often:
Brush your hair at least twice a day and avoid brushing it wet. Wet brushing causes dandruff and hair fall.
8. Exposure To Sun:
Do not expose it directly to the harsh sunlight. While going out cover your it properly with a stole or scarf.
OCP / Metformin, Essential Oils like (Rosemary/ jojoba oil), Apple cider vinegar, and supplements can help promote hair growth and recover the lost ones.
12 Easy Home Remedies For Hair Fall Due To PCOS
- Egg Mask: Separate the egg yolk from the egg whites and beat it. Apply this egg mask on to your scalp thoroughly and wash it after an hour with a mild shampoo.
- Licorice root: Licorice root opens pores and strengthens hair follicles and hence prevents the damage. To make a paste add a tablespoon of ground licorice root into a half cup milk. Apply this to your scalp and leave it on overnight.
- Coconut Milk: The essential fats present in coconut milk are believed to promote hair growth and also reduces damages. To make this paste, take a medium-sized coconut and grind or grate it.
Slightly simmer it in a pan for 5-10 minutes. Apply this coconut milk paste on your scalp and leave it for 20 minutes and later rinse it with a mild shampoo.
- Green Tea: Drink green tea at least 4 times a day. This relaxes your mind and keeps you away from stress and hence avoids the risk of losing it.
- Beetroot Juice: Regular applying of beetroot juice to the hair to prevent losing it. It helps to tighten the pores and reduces the risk of losing it. Squeeze out the juice from the grated beetroot and apply on hair. After an hour or over, rinse and shampoo.
- Greek Yoghurt and Honey: Mix 3-4 tablespoon of Greek yogurt with a spoon of honey and apply it on the hair. After 20-30 minutes, wash it with a mild shampoo.
- Aloe Vera: Apply freshly removed aloe vera on to the hair. Leave it for an hour and wash it with mild shampoo.
- Fenugreek Seeds: Grind the fenugreek seeds and add a tablespoon of coconut oil. Apply it from scalp to tip and wash it after an hour with shampoo.
- Onion Juice: Grind 1-2 onions and squeeze out the juice. Apply it and leave for an hour.
- Amla and Lime: Mix amla and lime juice and mask it over the hair. Leave for an hour or overnight and wash.
- Leaves of Chinese Hibiscus: Take around 3-4 Hibiscus leaves and one Hibiscus flower and grind them to make a smooth paste. Add a cup of low-fat yogurt to this paste. Apply it and rinse it after an hour.
- Curry Leaves: Take a hand full of curry leaves as much as need and thoroughly blend it. Take one tablespoon of this paste and add it to a cup of yogurt; mix well. Massage this paste over your scalp and hair, and rinse it after an hour or so.
PCOS can be treated with the right and healthy lifestyle and so is hair fall. Living healthy leads many things into a better version. Stress is one of the most important aspects of PCOS hair loss, can be avoided only with your effort, and has no home remedies for that. Hence always stay calm and positive.
Things like PCOS hair loss have to be understood well with respect to its cause and what can you do about it. To know and understand more about these, contact us!