Hair Scare: The bald-face truth about hair loss
8/9/2016 1:54 PM
When men go bald, they tend to lose two things: hair and confidence. Thick hair has historically been associated with youth and vitality. Fortunately, today’s man can join the shaved head movement and be viewed as taller, more masculine and more dominant.
If your hair is only on the sides and middle top of your head, the bare areas create a letter M. This is normal. But thinning that spreads across your scalp and not to the crown or temples can indicate a health issue.
One of the biggest reasons why men suffer from male pattern baldness (androgenetic alopecia) is genetic sensitivity to dihydrotestosterone (DHT). DHT binds to the receptors on the scalp follicles, causing hair follicles to shrink and making it impossible for healthy hair to survive. When the hair strand dies, it falls out.
DHT is a byproduct of testosterone and two thirds of men face hair loss by the age of 35. Other causes of hair loss could be hormone imbalance and poor nutrition.
A Finnish study found that men with high blood pressure, insulin resistance and obesity were a lot more likely to be bald. The results showed that a diet high in sugar and carbohydrates leads to insulin resistance and balding. Minimizing sugar in your diet decreases the release of testosterone and the development of DHT.
Some changes you could make to help your hair hang on include regular shampooing, good nutrition and head massages. Ketoconazole, an antifungal used to fight dandruff, may save your hair by slowing the production of testosterone (and therefore DHT) in hair follicles.
You might not be able to make your hair grow back, but you might be able to prevent it from falling out as quickly. Don’t fall for products that promise to grow hair back in a week.
Most of those products have not been clinically studied or approved by the FDA. If your goal is to keep what you have, stick with FDA-approved finasteride (Propecia) and minox idil (Rogaine).