What Causes Black Hair to Turn Grey? Vitamin Remedies for Grey Hair
If you told family and friends that you just heard of a cure for grey hair, they may laugh or at least appear to be skeptical. Most people believe that going grey is one of the inevitable misfortunes of growing old. The truth is some people go grey in their twenties. Understanding what causes hair to turn grey, is the key to knowing how to treat and prevent it.
Deep within the hair follicle lies tiny pigment cells called melanocytes. These cells manufacturer the pigment known as melanin, which gives hair its color. The greater the concentration of melanin, the darker the hair color. Hydrogen peroxide, a bleaching agent produced by the body, which effects the amount of melanin produced, is regulated by an enzyme called catalase. When the enzyme is lacking, the body produces too much hydrogen peroxide, which diminishes melanin, resulting in grey hair.
According to traditional chinese medicine (TCM), hair health reflects the strength of the kidneys and the quality of the blood. Weak liver blood and kidneys are believed to be the underlying causes of greying hair and rapid aging.
Poor diet and smoking have been found to cause deficiencies in important nutrients needed for healthy liver and kidney function. According to TCM it’s important to avoid excessive consumption of dairy, red meat and salt. Foods believed to be effective at strengthening the kidneys and the blood include chlorophyl (rich sources are green, leafy vegetables), blackstrap molasses, black sesame seeds, hijiki seaweed, nettles and wheatgrass.
Recent studies with animals have revealed that certain nutrients, which still have not been positively identified, have the ability to reverse grey hair, and restore normal color. The experiments were conducted at the laboratories of Dr. Agnes Fay Morgan of the University of California less than a year ago.
The animals were fed a mixture made by shaking water solutions of liver or rice bran and yeast with Fuller's earth. For several months, the animals were fed a diet that contained four B vitamins separated from the mixture. After the time had elapsed, they began to go grey and look less healthy. After being fed this diet, they were fed a diet with the filtrate that contained all the nutrients from the mixture. Before long, there normal hair color and appearance returned. Other recent studies have been conducted with similar results.
Many researchers believe that pantothenic acid is responsible for restoring and preventing grey hair. Others believe it is involved but that it needs to work with other nutrients to be effective. Another B vitamin, para-aminobenzoic acid has also been found effective in restoring original hair color in animal tests conducted.
There are many factors that may contribute to how effective key nutrients are in restoring normal hair color. The best approach to treating and preventing grey hair is to abstain from unhealthy foods and tobacco which weaken the liver and kidneys. Consume a healthy diet, particularly foods rich in nutrients thought to strengthen the kidney and liver. A liver and kidney will help maintain the appropriate production of hair pigment. Supplementing with key nutrients (high quality multivitamin/mineral supplement) believed to restore natural hair color may also be beneficial. For supplement information click here to fill out the client profile form.