Many of them we’ve already talked about in the course, but I would say go through the Gottfried protocol so that you are addressing those nutritional gaps. For instance, I found out that my copper was low. I also found out that I had mercury toxicity. Those are some of the reasons for my thyroid being borderline and also for my hair loss.
In terms of root causes, we talked about the low ferritin, low iron. Number two, the borderline thyroid and how that sometimes can go together with the iron.
Pretty much every hormonal change can cause hair loss. That’s one of the reasons why women increase their hair when they’re pregnant and then lose it when they’re postpartum. After they deliver their baby and their estrogen and progesterone levels go down to zero from being sky high, that triggers hair loss. Dramatic hormone shifts can cause hair loss. That’s a really common one.
Some of the things that we also see include a few other players. You know, I like to talk about hormones come also as if they’re part of this cast of characters that we’re trying to watch and manage.
The character here is insulin. If you’re someone who is stressed out or…
I know that doesn’t apply to the first woman that I mentioned, but if you’re someone who has insulin that is higher than normal. Insulin is a fat storage hormone. It does a number of things to the body, including causing increased belly fat. But if your cells become numb to insulin. If you have insulin resistance, it also increases your chance of hair loss.
Number one low iron, low ferritin. Number two thyroid problems, borderline or low thyroid function. Number three dramatic changes in your hormones generally. Number four insulin resistance.
Number five I’m just going to group together some different less common reasons, including heredity. Take a look at your mother’s hairline. That might be your future. Fortunately, there are some things you can do about it, but this is called “familial hair loss.” That’s a common one.
Another one I would put here is auto-immune problems. And when you have a doctor who’s checking you out for hair loss, you should have a long list of labs that they should check, ranging from looking at your iron levels, looking at something called your CBC to see if you have anemia.
That stands for “complete blood count.” Also looking at whether you have auto-immune problems. Looking at your fasting glucose. We want that fasting glucose to be less than 87. Otherwise there’s a big chance that you’ve got a problem with insulin resistance.
We want to look at some other hormones. We definitely want to look at your thyroid, of course. I like to look at the balance between progesterone and estrogen.
One other thing I want to mention here is something related to testosterone and the androgen family. This will be the last thing that I mention here. Women who have either really high testosterone, like their DHEA is high or something called dihydrotestosterone.
Women who have high androgens, which is the name of the family that testosterone belongs to. These are the brothers and sisters. DHEA gets made into testosterone. Testosterone then gets made into dihydrotestosterone.
If those levels are high, any of those can cause hair loss. And if they’re low, testosterone especially, it can cause loss of hair elsewhere, like pubic hair for instance.
Those are the most common causes of hair loss. The list is actually quite a bit longer, but that’s valuable just to help people get into action.
Jackie: This has been extremely informative, because even if you are not 100 percent experiencing it in an acute level like one of these questions. These are just things where if it affects such a high percentage.
If it does affect you in the future, at least you have a game plan. That you know, “OK, I’m going to ask my doctor these questions.” It just gives you at least some starting point versus someone just saying, “Here’s some Rogaine.”
Extremely informative. I definitely want to do a full course on this, when you have a go to plan, you can really feel, at least confident that you know where to start.
Dr. Sara: That’s right. You just described, Jackie, perhaps my most important mission, which is I want women to have choices. I want them to step into their power. I want them to feel empowered. Feeling beautiful, understanding the reason why they’re losing some hair is a really important part of that.
Related Free Webinar With Dr Sara Gottfried: The 3 Hormones That Make Women Miserable