Losing weight can truly feel like a victory. But along with the celebratory feeling of weight loss many people experience while using new GPL1 weight loss drugs like Ozempic – there can be another unwelcome side effect: loss of hair health. While the exact connection is still being investigated, many are looking for immediate solutions for their hair, which is thinning right alongside their waistline.
Hair tells the truth about you
In a social society, the volume, health, color, or lack of hair communicates a simple message when people meet. It’s hard to fake good hair health. While there are ways to change the appearance of the hair temporarily, some methods can impact hair health long term. Hair is a constantly growing feature of the body and many of the short-term treatments that can be used to change the appearance of visible hair can also damage the underlying roots, which is where hair grows from. As people age, hair color, density, and strength changes are almost inevitable signs of aging and are not easy to reverse.
Fixing one part of your appearance can cause problems with others
Rapid weight loss with a restrictive diet can cause the condition known as acute telogen effluvium (TE), a common cause of hair loss on the scalp. TE typically occurs about three months after a triggering event like rapid weight loss and can last for up to six months. The dietary deficiencies that come as a result of restrictive diets can also cause other types of hair loss, such as hair follicle health challenges that can cause androgenic alopecia.
There has been a revolution in weight loss treatments over the past few years. There has been an avalanche of interest in a new form of drug known as glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor agonist (GLP-1RA). These drugs were initially developed to treat type 2 diabetes, but very quickly were found to enable very rapid weight loss.
All over the world, people rushed to start weight management treatment with GLP-1-type drugs, most notably Ozempic. After two years of gathering evidence, there is a growing body of opinion that one of the less common side effects of Ozempic may be a slowing down of the rate of hair regrowth or even triggering the onset of baldness after persistent use of the weight-loss drug.
What affects your hair’s appearance?
The number one cause of changes in hair health and appearance is aging. Nearly everyone will show signs of either hair loss, thinning, or color changing with aging. The rate of hair growth also slows. Many hair follicles stop producing new hairs, or the hairs produced are thinner and have less pigment. In the case of men, they will develop male pattern baldness, either as a receding hairline or as a bald patch at the back of the head.
Men may start showing signs of baldness from age 30, and many are nearly bald by age 60. This type of baldness is related to declines in the male hormone levels called androgens.
The causes of female pattern baldness are also related to aging. It usually comes from changes in the balance between levels of testosterone (a male hormone that is present in low quantities in fertile women) and estrogen, which is the main female hormone and which drops off dramatically when a woman enters menopause. In female pattern baldness, the changes occur mainly on the top of the head (the crown) in what’s known as the Christmas tree pattern. Unlike men, the hairline for women tends to remain largely unaffected. For women, total baldness coming just from aging is rare. For most women, it ends up that their thicker and coarser hair eventually becomes thinner, finer, and lighter-colored.
What else can cause the loss of hair health?
The biochemistry of the cells strongly influences the hair’s strength, color, and thickness. Many external factors can influence how well the cells are doing their work.
Other conditions which disrupt the health of hair follicles and cause damage to hair appearance or replacement include:
- Scalp conditions like dandruff (seborrheic dermatitis), psoriasis, or fungal infections.
- Imbalances in sebum (oil) levels can lead to either a dry scalp or excessively oily conditions.
- Damage or blockage to hair follicles coming from inflammation, scarring, or diseases in the scalp.
- A lack of proteins in the diet affects the basic protein keratin that hair is made up of.
- Deficiencies in vitamins and minerals like biotin, iron, zinc, and vitamin D.
- Imbalances in thyroid hormones (hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism).
- Shortages of testosterone in males can cause the condition known as androgenetic alopecia.
- Hormonal fluctuations during pregnancy and menopause.
- High stress levels can trigger hair follicle health challenges, resulting in telogen effluvium.
In persistent hair growth issues or scalp conditions, consulting with a healthcare professional or a dermatologist is recommended to address underlying causes and develop appropriate treatment plans.
Loss of hair health can have social and psychological consequences, especially for women. Even though only approximately 13% of women show hair loss before menopause, this can make it even more stressful for them because the lack of beautiful hair is less common.
How can hair health be restored?
A few conventional treatments can stop hair thinning, and one can even reverse the process and restore hair health. On the one hand, dermatologists can prescribe drugs like Propecia (finasteride), which was primarily designed to treat another male condition (enlarged prostate) but has been shown to stimulate regrowth of lost hair in about two-thirds of cases.
Alternatively, there is a popular over-the-counter, all -natural supplement called Phyllotex. For those that don’t want to combat the affects of a pharmaceutical intervention with another pharmaceutical intervention, Phyllotex is a great option. It boosts hair regeneration without drugs by supplying the necessary vitamins and minerals for hair health. Phyllotex works to both slow down loss of hair health and promote recovery. After three months, tests showed that the hair count of many patients had doubled, and if they went on, it doubled again after six months.
More on Phyllotex here:
Phyllotex is a proprietary patented all-natural product containing a combination of green coffee beans, acai, tabebuia avellanedae (Pau D’arco), and olive leaf, together with vitamins and minerals such as vitamin D, vitamin B5 (pantothenic acid), zinc and magnesium. These combine to protect and stimulate hair follicles and reverse hair loss naturally.
Scientific studies have demonstrated that Phyllotex stimulates growth in the hair follicles. Phyllotex can reduce excess hair shedding and promote faster growth of thicker and longer hair. It is completely natural, vegetarian, without side effects, and intended for both women and men. It also shows evidence that Phyllotex can improve general health by reducing inflammation and boosting immune health.