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Could Protein Shakes Be Causing Your Hair to Fall Out?
by April Maguire
For the health-conscious among us, protein shakes are a godsend. Drinking down a shake once or twice a day is an efficient, easy way to increase your protein intake, give your body the energy that it needs to function and provide your muscles with the fuel to exercise, all while keeping your calorie intake to a minimum. Sounds too good to be true, right? Well, maybe it is, as recent research may have uncovered a link between the consumption of protein shakes and premature hair loss.
The Basics of Hair Loss
Whether you like it or not, hair loss is likely going to strike you at some point in your life. In fact, more than half of men start to see a noticeable amount of thinning or loss by the time they reach 50 years old. Most male hair loss is due to a condition known as androgenetic alopecia, or simply male pattern baldness.
With androgenetic alopecia, the follicles on your head begin to shrink, producing hair that is finer and finer. Eventually, the follicles stop growing new hair entirely, resulting in the common patches of baldness that men get along their hairline and around the crown of the head.
Testosterone and DHT
Consuming protein shakes may be good for improving the quality of your workouts and increasing your muscle mass, but many of these shakes contain ingredients that could be contributing to hair loss. Some protein shakes are infused with growth hormones, such as DHEA and creatine, which raise the level of testosterone that your body produces. Unfortunately, this testosterone also produces a chemical called DHT, which interacts negatively with hair follicles, inducing follicle shrinkage and causing baldness.
Before you get too alarmed, it's important to keep in mind that protein shakes can't cause hair loss in and of themselves. In order for the DHT to impact your follicles and cause them to stop working, you need to already be prone to androgenetic alopecia. As such, drinking protein shakes won't lead to you going bald, but they can dramatically speed up the rate of hair loss if you were going to go bald anyway.
Fortunately, there is an easy solution. By simply avoiding protein shakes that include testosterone boosters, you should be able to keep the DHT in your system to a minimum. Also, there are many foods you can eat, such as eggs and chicken, which are high in protein that won't contribute to your hair loss. In fact, many high-protein foods contain essential vitamins and nutrients that will strengthen your hair and keep it on your head where it belongs.
If you or someone you know would like to learn more about hair loss and how to treat it, please feel free to schedule a consultation or contact one of our representatives today!