How I Grew My Hair 6+ Inches After Years of Thinning, Breakage, Loss & Lack of Growth
After years of my dealing with hair loss, thinning, breakage and lack of growth, I decided to dive into the ‘why’ behind all things hair and figure out the potential causes not only to be able to regain the strength of my own hair, but to then help all of you! Finally, after much trial and error, my hair stopped falling out and actually started growing like crazy. I’m sharing the exact timeline of events, products and protocols I used to get my hair to grow 6+ inches in a few months.
Ladies, let’s talk hair. This can be a sensitive topic for many, and I totally understand. For some, hair loss is inevitable. I’d like to note that this blog post was thoroughly thought out, researched extensively and before going into the details, the following needs to be said—
At the end of the day, our hair is just hair. Our hair does not define our worth and will not make God love us any less.
There are a number of reasons why someone might experience hair thinning, breakage, loss or lack of growth. Post pregnancy, many women lose hair due to the imbalance of hormones. Therefore, there are seasons of life where it might just be inevitable. However, after a few years of losing hair by the handfuls, I dug into some research to discover the ‘why’ behind hair loss or lack of growth and discovered the ROOT cause must be identified and addressed.
Similar to everything I preach in my practice, if there is something that can be done to improve our confidence or quality of life to be able to better serve God, I will provide that information for you all. I hope this post sheds light on reasonings behind hair loss and provides you with the same knowledge and tools I have implemented to regrow mine 6+ inches in a few short months.
Over the course of two years, I struggled with flat, lifeless hair that kept breaking and falling out by the globs. As someone who eats healthy, takes care of he body and helps others overcome their own health struggles, it was beyond frustrating that I could not figure out my own.
After discovering my ‘why’ and root cause, I was able to address the issues and not only stop the loss, but grow it fairly quickly. In this post, I touch on 5 common causes of hair loss with actionable steps for each in identifying the potential root cause and then, how to go about addressing it.
I then proceed to share exactly what I did and used to regrow mine.
The information provided in this post is not meant to serve as a replacement for medical advice. You should always consult your doctor or PCP before starting any new food, supplement or lifestyle plan. The information in this post is solely for educational purposes and and I pray that through it, the Lord provides answers and healings for some of you.
5 Causes of Hair Loss with Action Steps
Let’s look at a few symptoms of stress— fatigue, insomnia, tendency to need sunglasses, chronic pain, headaches, migraines, anxiety, depression, weight gain, drastic weight loss, joint inflammation, GI issues, alternating constipation and diarrhea, tendonitis, bursitis, low libido, fibromyalgia, irritability, anger, nervousness, addictions, obsessive behaviors, frequent urination, heart disease, blood pressure problems, light-headedness, and dizziness upon rising from a bed or chair just to name a few.
A few other less known symptoms of stress are hormonal imbalances, such as infertility, changes in menstrual cycle, amenorrhea, thyroid imbalance and hair loss. On paper, stress can look like an imbalanced diurnal cortisol curve, or an adrenal insufficiency/dysregulated HPA Axis.
Stress was one of the reasons my hair was falling out. How did I find this out? Lab testing— I took a cortisol saliva test that collected samples of my saliva at 4 different times over the course of one day.
Cortisol production varies throughout the day with levels normally highest in the morning and lowest in the evening before bed. Mine was flopped, often termed tired but wired. My body was exhausted but I was up all night. The advantage of saliva testing is that it takes cortisol levels at different times of the day and lets you know how your cortisol levels vary during the day.
A C T I O N S T E P S F O R S T R E S S
If you suspect a cortisol imbalance, order an Adrenal Stress Lab Test
Implement stress lowering activities— deep breathing, epsom salt baths, SLEEP SLEEP SLEEP
Consider supplementing with a quality CBD oil and/or 100% organic Ganoderma Lucidum
2. Hormone Imbalance(s)
Ever wonder why many women experience hair growth during pregnancy and hair loss during the postpartum period…? Hormonal shifts. Our sex hormones, specifically estrogen, progesterone and testosterone all play a role in hair growth and hair loss. Too much estrogen relative to progesterone, termed estrogen dominance can lead to hair loss or lack of growth. Similarly, too high or low testosterone can create problems as well.
Testosterone is a hormone converted to DHT by Type II 5-alpha reductase, an enzyme present in the body. Most often people think testosterone is a hormone only for men, but women need a certain amount as well, as it provides self-confidence and improvements to mood. When testosterone gets too high, it can lead to baldness on the head and an overgrowth of hair on the chin or face, similar to hair patterns of males. This is a common symptom of PCOS, a condition I see in my practice quite often where women struggle with hirsutism, a condition of excessive body hair growth similar to that of men. Luckily, with the right food, lifestyle and supplements plan, PCOS is manageable and can even become asymptomatic.
One of the best herbs to block DHT is Ganoderma Lucidum. There are multiple studies, including this study that proves Ganoderma to be the most effective at inhibiting the 5-alpha reductase enzyme, somewhere between 70% and 80%.
A C T I O N S T E P S F O R H O R M O N E S
3. Thyroid Imbalance
Insufficient thyroid levels is another popular cause of hair loss. I recommend every women run a full thyroid panel to make sure your TSH, Free T4, Free T3, and TPOab levels are all in a functional and optimal range. Most tests will include “normal” reference ranges but these are not optimal. You can still have thyroid dysfunction and symptoms, including thyroid hair loss, even if your TSH and T4 are “normal” by a majority of tests, so getting your levels tested is important.
The following foods and nutrients are needed for a healthy thyroid
Iodine— I recommend that this come from food, as in sea vegetables, dulse and kelp
Activated B complex
See Supplements page for brand recommendations and how to get functional medicine supplements.
A C T I O N S T E P S F O R T H Y R O I D
If you suspect a thyroid problem, order a thyroid Lab Test to assess levels; I’m happy to read your labs and offer suggestions
Consider supplementing with 100% organic Ganoderma Lucidum— it provides multiple nutrients that support the thyroid, plus it boosts the immune system. See pictures below for reference.
4. Nutrient Deficiency
Nutrients play an important role in keeping the hair on our heads from falling out. A good quality multi-vitamin is important and of course a healthy diet is essential, but even then, sometimes we need additional supplementation to bring the body back into optimal balance.
There are a variety of vitamins and minerals for healthy hair— Iodine, Zinc, Selenium, Vitamin D, Vitamin B12, Boron and Magnesium. A Hair Tissue Mineral Analysis (HTMA) Lab Test is a great way to assess levels.
Nutrient deficiencies were also an issue for me and another cause of my hair loss. Therefore, I supplemented specific nutrients for three months at a therapeutic dose, specifically nutrients necessary for hair health, until the levels on my lab test returned to normal.
A C T I O N S T E P S F O R D E F I C I E N C I E S
Order a Complete Blood Count (CBC) to look at vitamin and mineral levels; you may need a HTMA Lab Test as well
Supplement with activated multivitamin/multimineral— 99% of people should be taking this; our soil is depleted and we are not getting the same amounts of nutrients in food in todays day in age as people used too. you can find my top recommendations on my supplements page
Consider supplementing with 100% organic Ganoderma Lucidum.
Consider supplementing with individual nutrients based on deficiency (i.e extra vitamin D, b12, magnesium, or the minerals listed above needed for hair growth if deficiency is present).
5. Autoimmune Disease
There are a few autoimmune conditions and diseases that lead to hair loss, such as Alopecia and Cancer. Alopecia is a condition that typically causes patchy bald spots on the scalp. It is an autoimmune disorder in which the immune system mistakenly attacks the hair follicles. Therefore, it is important to address what caused the autoimmune condition in the first place, and since we know autoimmune conditions stem from leaky gut, the leaky gut must also be addressed. I wrote a post on the Autoimmune Paleo Protocol as well as an AIP Survival Guide. I, personally, followed the protocol for 4 months and it helped me identify foods my body did not agree with.
A C T I O N S T E P S F O R D I S E A S E
Fix Leaky Gut — I offer this as a service when working with clients
Support body with an AIP diet to identify and eliminate food sensitivities and inflammatory triggers
Consider supplementing with CBD oil and/or 100% organic Ganoderma Lucidum, the king of herbs, used in various cancer treatments and autoimmune protocols across the world. Request video pictured above for pub med study references and details and/or seek more information.
How I Grew My Hair 6+ Inches
For those of you that are not familiar with my health history, I have hypothyroidism and a rare autoimmune liver disease, both of which I believe caused severe hair loss and a number of other not-so-fun side effects. By dedication and God’s graces, I have been able to put both completely into remission and manage naturally with herbs, a whole foods plant based diet and specific superfoods and nutrients. As a result, my hair has not only stopped falling out and thinning, it is growing like crazy, and I am excited to share with you all exactly what I did and will continue doing.
1. I Stopped Guessing and Finally Ran Lab Tests
I chose to run the following lab tests— CBC, Thyroid, Adrenal & Hormone Test and in-person food sensitivity. The lab tests exposed deficiencies in thyroid numbers at the time as well as issues in my diurnal cortisol curve. At this point, I had a better idea of what my body needed specifically.
2. I Supplemented
CBD oil— for stress, hormones, thyroid, cortisol and adrenals
100% Organic Ganoderma Lucidum— I consume this via Organic Ganoderma coffee and Ganoderma Spores, linked on my favorites page. This is used to boost immune system and help with sleep, stress, thyroid, cortisol, hormones, and adds nutritive values (such as vitamin C, D, iron and others). Please refer to this page for more information.
Activated Multivitamin/Multimineral— I switch between a few weekly: Equilibrium Shake powder, Thorne Mediclear Shake or one of the Multis listed on my Supplements page.
Selenium & L-Tyrosine— I supplemented with selenomethionine and L-tyorsine in addition to Ganoderma to naturally support my thyroid and the conversion of T4 to T3 (active form of thyroid)
C Salts— Vitamin C strengthens adrenals and thyroid; you can not take too much, as excess will be excreted through urine
Progessence Plus— my tests revealed very low progesterone levels; I’ve been naturally supporting my hormones with Young Living Progessense Plus— 2-4 drops 2x a day. I get this from my functional medicine doctor and a friend who sells YL.
Greens Powder— contains 22 organic fruits and vegetables and no fillers and the only greens powder I currently can recommend.
Each of these played a significant role in supporting my body during these past few months.
3. Added Ganoderma && Switched My Coffee
This was a pivotal point in my hair growth journey. As you dive further into this post, you will learn how beneficial Ganoderma mushroom can be for your body, due to the fact it works as an adaptogen, bringing the body back into balance and helping with a variety of unwanted symptoms and diseases. There is a ton of information regarding Ganoderma in the video I discussed above, as well as this page here. See pictures below for references as well.
Do not buy from amazon; it’s highly likely it is a counterfeit product or contains Ganoderma grown from artificial bags!!!
4. Utilized Essential Oils
Multiple research studies suggest the use of essential oils for hair growth and thickness. These oils work better when supplementing with vitamin c in the body as well since Vitamin C resists stress. I used the following essential oils 3x a week, in hair masks, my shampoo and conditioner bottles and scalp massages.
Bergamot essential oil— Helps to reduce inflammation and found to help produce hair growth and a healthy, balanced scalp.
Beautycounter No. 2 Oil— Contains jojoba oil and other oils that. This adds tone to scalp, shown to help hair grow faster. I used this as my carrier oil.
Hair Support Essential Oil— contains oils known to increase thickness of hair and balance pH of scalp. When scalp retains more moisture, it is a better environment to grow more hair.
Olive Oil or Sesame Oil- I used these as my carrier oils; both are also wonderful for hair
I choose to use Rocky Mountain Oils due to their purity, free shipping and quality and love the blend of the hair support essential oil.
See recipe below for how I used these to grow my hair.
EM’s Hair Oil Treatment
Use this treatment 3 times per week, the night before washing my hair, or apply treatment in the morning and wear a hat before washing that evening.
2 drop Bergamot essential oil from Rocky Mountain Oils
2 drops Hair support essential oil from Rocky Mountain Oils
3 drops Beautycounter No. 2 oil (I use this as face oil & hair oil)
1-2 tablespoons carrier oil (olive oil or sesame oil)
Massage onto scalp before bed. Cover your hair if you want. This allows it to sit for 8-10 hours and you can wash it out in morning. Massaging increases circulation which allows more hair growth. Don’t wash hair every day as it can be too drying.
When washing your hair, I highly recommend switching to a clean shampoo and conditioner without harsh chemicals. I often switch up the ones I use, but have been adding 2 drops of the hair support essential oil from Rocky Mountain Oils to them for the past year. I rotate between Beautycounter’s nourishing hair line, Rahua and EvolveH. As long as your shampoo and conditioner are a 2 or less on the EWG Skin Deep Database, you should be alright! The most up to date brands I am using can be found on my products page.
Note: if you’ve been using shampoo or conditioners with chemicals, that build up can create issues on the scalp and prevent hair growth. I highly encourage you to explore the detox and renew hair kit I have listed on my products page and complete a hair detox prior to starting this regimen.
5. Practiced Self Care & Self Love
There is something so powerful about self love. The more you practice self love, the less stress your body perceives. Stress alone is the number one cause of disease. The mind is such a powerful thing. A negative or stressful thought alone can turn off muscular function or digestion. Give yourself some grace, practice self care, journal, get a massage, take a day to yourself, meditate, sit in a sauna, etc.
Fill up your cup, then fill up others. - Em
I’d love to hear what you have done to keep your hair healthy or get it to grow! Feel free to comment below anything you think my readers would find beneficial and as always, If you have any questions, please not not hesitate to email me.