In my previous post I discussed possible underlying causes of hair loss. I promised a follow-on post and here it is! Here I explain different natural hair loss treatment options available. This post is written from my knowledge of natural medicine. I’m Natasha, a registered naturopath and medical herbalist based in Waikato, New Zealand.
Hair Loss Causes
In my previous post, I outlined the different possible underlying causes of hair loss. I mentioned the following health issues:
- Thyroid imbalances – An over or under-active thyroid, along with postpartum thyroiditis.
- Hormone imbalances – Polycystic ovary syndrome.
- Gut health – Poor nutrient absorption from food intolerances.
- Nutrition – Poor nutrient intake from a restrictive diet.
Natural Hair Loss Treatment Options
Everyone has a unique health history. This means that each approach to treating hair loss will be individual. Treatment options are based on the client’s own health journey.
This is my general approach as a naturopath and medical herbalist:
- Identify why hair loss is occurring.
- Remove the current barriers to healthy hair growth.
- Support general healing of the body using natural methods.
- Additional support for healthy hair growth and renewal.
Hair Loss Client Case Example
Client S has been slowly losing hair for months. She now has noticed that her hair is much thinner than it used to be. Client S has a history of crash dieting and not eating regular meals. She also gets bloating after large meals, especially those with wheat and dairy.
Identify the ‘Why’
I’m looking to find out why my client is experiencing hair loss. As naturopaths, we treat the cause and the whole person – not symptom management.
Based on the example above, I would start my investigation with the following areas:
- 3-5 day food intake and symptom diary.
- Gut health investigation with appropriate testing for microbiome imbalances.
- Food sensitivity testing.
- Nutrition analysis to pick up on any gaps in nutrients.
- Relevant blood testing to rule out any other possible underlying causes of hair loss.
In this case, I would also be looking at stress levels and cosmetic/hair care products too, just to be certain that these areas are covered.
Remember, each case is unique. If the client was experiencing hair loss due to hormonal or thyroid imbalances, then the treatment plan would tailored according to these conditions and their unique health history.
Removing Barriers to Health
The body has the ability to self-heal. When we remove the barriers to health, the body automatically begins the process of healing.
In this case example, there may be several barriers to health and self-healing.
Let’s say that testing and the food diary showed client S has intolerances to wheat and dairy, and this led to a leaky gut.
The leaky gut was creating issues with nutrient absorption and digestion. So, in combination with a history of crash dieting, poor diet and gut health has been identified as the main cause for her hair loss.
Temporarily removing these foods is now important for client S to heal.
Support General Health and Healing
Here, I would introduce a wellness plan for client S. It would include the following elements:
- Details of how to follow an elimination diet.
- Gut healing protocol using herbal medicine. Some examples of gut healing herbs include slippery elm, marshmallow, turmeric, chamomile, peppermint, ginger and more.
Please note: a personalised herbal formula all depends on the unique case of the client, their medications and constitution.
- Healthy balanced diet and nutrition recommendations. This includes recipes and meal plans if required.
- Additional supplements to support gut health as required.
- Lifestyle recommendations. For example, use natural hair care products and reduce stress levels if these are relevant to the case.
Healthy Hair Growth and Renewal Support
This is where I can use targeted nutrition, herbs and supplements to support healthy hair growth.
At this point, we have covered the true underlying cause for the client’s hair loss. We have also removed the barriers to self-healing. And finally, we have supported the body towards a state of healing and optimal health.
What’s next, then? Support healthy hair growth and renewal!
This part is often the part people want to jump straight into at the beginning. However, we have to go through all the previous phases first.
We must build a strong foundation of health. This how we set ourselves up for success. Otherwise, the recommendations in this section won’t be nearly as effective!
Natural Hair Loss Treatment Options
When looking to promote hair growth, we can look to the following areas:
These can be found in a range of food sources, or supplementation. I recommend choosing whole food sources first. Supplements can be really tricky to get right, and often the vitamins in the grocery store aren’t high quality.
These can be taken as tincture, herbal teas or used topically in a range of ways. There are many different herbs that offer help with hair growth. This is a short list of the possible options.
- Nettle – Rich in silica and used as a hair rinse, hair oil or herbal tea and tincture.
- Rosemary – Used topically on the scalp as essential oil form with a suitable carrier oil.
- Fenugreek – Seeds made into a paste and applied topically as a hair mask.
- Peppermint – Used topically on the scalp as essential oil form with a suitable carrier oil.
- Lavender – Used topically on the scalp as essential oil form with a suitable carrier oil.
- Aloe Vera – The inner leaf gel made into a paste and applied topically as a hair masque.
- Reduce stress levels through mindfulness, breathing exercises or meditation.
- Exercise for at least 45 minutes each day.
- Eat in a mindful manner without screens or stress during meal times.
- Drink plenty of clean water, around 2L per day.
- Minimise coffee/black tea intake (1-2 cups per day maximum!), especially after midday.
- Eat a whole foods, plant based diet with a variety of fruits, vegetables, nuts and seeds.
- If you choose to eat animal protein, opt for grass fed, free range and organic.
- Choose natural beauty and household products to reduce daily chemical load.
Natural Hair Loss Treatment Summary
As you can see, this is a comprehensive approach to hair loss treatment from a natural health perspective.
We have investigated the true underlying cause of hair loss and based our treatment plan on this true cause. This may vary from individual to individual.
We have also removed the barriers to health and wellness. Further, we have supported the body toward its natural state of healing and balance.
Finally, we looked at additional hair growth and renewal natural treatment options. This gives a targeted approach to restoring hair loss. Each person may find a certain approach to treatment works better for them. For example, they may prefer to take a herbal tincture daily than to prepare a hair mask.
Holistic Health Consultations
I work with each client based on their own health goals. In this way, I create realistic and successful treatment plans based on my clients current day to day lifestyle.
I love seeing my clients succeed and thrive in health and well being. If you have any questions, please feel free to write a comment below, or use my contact form.
If you are interested in a consultation with me, visit my bookings page here. I offer a free 15 minute discovery call so we can discuss your health goals.